Coachella Valley: Pamper yourself in a desert oasis
By JIM FARBER
INDIAN WELLS, .Calif. There are so many reasons to choose the Coachella
Valley as the destination for a perfect getaway vacation.
If pampering appeals to you, an ideal choice might be the Miramonte Resort and
Spa. Nestled against the slopes of the Santa Rosa Mountains in Indian Wells,
this Mediterranean viflastyle resort offers all the traditional amenities (restaurant,
two swimming pools, cabanas, conference facilities, etc.) while maintaining a
sense of intimacy. The grounds are impeccably landscaped with flowers and fruit
trees, and restful hammocks are spotted strategically for an afternoon siesta. But
it is the Miramonte's 14,000-square-foot, Tuscan-style spa, The Well, that is the
resort's jewel. Enter, and you are in a world apart
The vast menu of messages, wraps, scrubs, baths and facials The Well offers
(for her, him or both) range from the traditional to the exotic, from New Age
meditative to the downright playful practice of "pittura festa" body painting with
"With a palate of colorful muds and clays along with brushes," the spa's literature
explains, "the therapist encourages guests to find their artistic side not to mention
their inner child painting shades of red, green, yellow and black upon themselves
and their partner."
I decided to pass on mud play in favor of a mud wrap. Here is how the brochure
describes my treatment: "Our strongest blended mud containing oarweed algae.
This treatment deeply stimulates circulation and the lymph system. Strong
sensations of cold and progressive warmth occur as a state of balance is
reached. The body is wrapped and attention is delivered through hands-on
compression work followed by a milky massage oil. 60 minutes."
Followed by a nice, deep massage on the outdoor patio, a Polynesian-style
flower petal and oil foot-washing ritual (accompanied by the ringing of Tibetan
ting shaw bells) and a leisurely soak in The Well's glistening warm water pools,