From traditional Mayan treatments to modern, science-based restoration, Cancun’s spa offerings are diverse, and most are associated with one of the city’s top hotels or resorts, making it easy for travelers to get to the spa—whether it’s for a one-off facial or a weeklong getaway. It’s not uncommon for luxe spas to include private beauty salons and fitness centers, and the best are recognizable for their distinct, coastal Mexican aesthetic. My favorite spas are transportive: they allow you to relax while establishing a sense of space and self-indulgence. They heal the body with native products (quartz gemstones; mescal and chaya) and clear the mind of the stresses of travel (ayurvedic therapy; reiki), so that you can fully enjoy the rest of your vacation. Of course, for those who have indulged too fully, there are healing after-sun treatments and a variety of massages and facials meant to cleanse and detox the body from a week’s worth of unlimited tropical cocktails.
Leblanc Spa Resort
The most famed spa in the Cancun Hotel Zone can be found at Leblanc Resort, known for its sophisticated, nature-inspired design (polished stone walkways; columns of white chiffon curtains). This out-of-this-world oasis provides incredible luxury and relaxation with its renowned hydrotherapy stations, including cool and warm pools, a sauna, a steam room, and a hydro-reflexology pool.
Here, a beautiful sensations pool (featuring bubble geysers and cascades) overlooks the lagoon, and is the centerpiece of the immense, 40,0000 square foot spa. Tucked inside the Fiesta Americana Grand Coral Beach Resort, the Gem Spa takes its name from signature, stone-inspired treatments. Try the diamond-dust exfoliation or quartz stone massage, followed by chromo-therapy or the 10-step hydrotherapy program.
The Royal Sands
The lovely spa at The Royal Sands resort is known for its extensive menu of massages. Not to be missed? The new 90-minute bamboo massage, performed with a dried bamboo cane, or the wave-inspired lomi lomi massage. Many visitors enjoy the unusual fish therapy treatment, allowing tiny Garra Rufa fish to polish their feet.
Spa at the JW Marriot Cancun Resort
The three-story spa at the JW Marriott Cancun expertly combines Mayan ingredients with Asian techniques for an impressive menu of treatments and therapies. Enjoy separate lounges for men and women, along with a health bar serving smoothies and fresh-pressed juices. Sip an exotic green juice (grapefruit, pineapple, celery, parsley, nopales) while enjoying sweeping lagoon views from the indoor lap pool area.
Located at the iconic Xbalamque hotel in the heart of Downtown Cancun, this small-but-impressive spa offers ancient, regional techniques and rituals at affordable prices, making it a popular choice for both Cancun locals as well as budget travelers. My favorite experience? The group “temazcal” therapy: a Mayan sweat lodge using meditative instruction and medicinal herbs to refresh your mental energy.