A Sanctuary From Stress in Scottsdale

Scottsdale doesn’t lack for gorgeous, luxurious resorts, but if you’re looking for an escape designed to relax and rejuvenate, look no further than Sanctuary Resort and Spa.

The only Valley resort nestled on the city’s famous Camelback Mountain, Sanctuary is celebrating 10 years of offering travelers a respite from their stressful daily lives.

The property, with its Asian design and themes, is the perfect place to get back in touch with your inner self with a holistic weekend or day.

Begin with a relaxing morning spent in the large negative edge pool with stellar views of the mountains of Phoenix.  After a dip, enjoy  the terrific Spring weather with a great book or simply watch the parade of pretty people that pass by your chaise.

Relaxing can be hard work, so for lunch head to Elements to recharge and refuel.  Run by Food Network Star Beau MacMillan, Elements embodies the Asian spirit of the resort.  The minimalist dining room offers great views and great food that is based on the philosophy of using fresh, local, seasonal and organic ingredients.  The restaurant offers something for everyone including spa cuisine and a kitchen team that will work to tweak items to conform to a gluten-free diet.

Since the point of the trip is to get your Zen back, opt for one of the spa bento boxes.  With main features like miso salmon, flank steak or fire roasted shrimp that are accompanied with brown rice, Asian cucumber and pepper salad and steamed vegetables like bok choy and shitake mushrooms, it’s hard to believe that they all clock in under 400 calories total.  Bursting with flavor and expertly prepared, it’s easy to see why MacMillan is one of the few challengers to win on Iron Chef America.

Fully satiated, head to the spa for an indulgent and healing afternoon.  While the spa isn’t large by Valley spa standards, it offers one of the more unique treatment menus in the city.  Keep the Asian theme alive by choosing one of the Eastern modalities.  On a recent visit I tried Reiki.

Reiki is energy work that is focused on balancing the seven chakras of the body to leave you more centered and relaxed.  The therapist uses light touch all over your body to do this.  I was surprised that the experience left me sleepier and much more relaxed than massage usually does.  At the end of the treatment, I asked my therapist Ginny what she felt was going on with me based on the energy she felt.  She told me that I was stuffing my emotions and had recently experienced a great loss that has left me angry, resentful and slightly fearful.  All true.  When I told her that at one point during the session I felt an overwhelming sensation of heat and that my left leg become heavy and numb she told me that indicated that something was blocking me from moving forward.  Very interesting and I’m pretty sure I even know what it is.

After the treatment, hold on to your feelings of relaxation by resting in the lounge, taking a plunge in the hot tub or sitting in the steam room.

Wrap up your day of bliss at Jade bar and enjoy a signature cocktail like the Fiery Mandarin (Grey Goose, jalapeno, orange zest, cranberry and lemon) while you watch the sunset on the mountain and ponder your day of bliss at one of Scottsdale’s most exclusive enclaves.

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