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Exhale Spa

Exhale Spa

Review: Exhale Spa

4 out of 5 Highly Recommend

I recently had the opportunity to visit the Exhale Spa in the Epic boutique hotel in downtown Miami, Fl. I had never been to the hotel or the spa, I simply found them online and called for some very basic information on their spa before I booked our couples massage. My husband and I were just blessed with twins and needed a well-deserved break, so we thought a day at the spa is just what the doctor ordered. Below is a review of how we felt about the experience, one that we desperately needed to keep our sanity!

All of my remarks are on a scale of 1-10 with 1 being the lowest and 10 being the highest

Ease of Booking
On a scale of 1 to 10 this was definitely a 10. We booked the treatment the morning of and had no trouble getting in. We were able to get a couple's massage with two female massage therapists and we were able to pick a time that worked for us.

Location of the Spa
The hotel and spa were located on the bank of the Miami River where it meets Biscayne Bay. Driving to this location is a little tricky, but when you get there the views are beautiful. When we arrived we were greeted by the beautiful breeze that smelled like relaxation! There is valet parking at the hotel.

The Hotel
The hotel is a 10. You are greeted with an ultra-luxurious, modern lobby adorned with marble and wood accents, the epitome of class and beauty. I was very impressed and felt immediately calm and relaxed. It is a boutique hotel and the rooms are very nice. My husband and I even commented that we should come back for more of a spa weekend and stay at the hotel.

The Spa
The spa was a 7. After we found our way to the spa through the rich surroundings of the lobby, we entered through an orange welcoming area with gifts and supplies for the spa-goer. It wasn't the most welcoming area and I certainly didn't feel like I was in a spa, more like a gift shop. There is a check-in station on this level and the classrooms for yoga and other classes are behind the reception area. To get to the massage services, you had to go down a steep flight of stairs where the locker rooms, steam room and lounge were. There was a reception area there, but no one to receive us. It seemed poorly thought out and arranged.

The locker rooms were very clean, the showers were very nice and there was a women's only sauna in the locker room. The lockers were only half height which was a bit awkward, especially because I was assigned a lower locker and I would've preferred to have a full-height locker. I changed and put on my robe and sandals and went into the lounge area.

The lounge area was quiet and dark, very calming. They had hot water for tea and cold water to drink, but no snacks and the only magazines were those that others seemed to have left behind. The music was nice, very zen but the area was small. I felt like I was infringing on the space of my neighbor while I waited for my treatment.

The massage was very nice - an hour-long, couples massage with aromatherapy. The room for the massage was large and calm, the music they had was very calming and our massage therapists were very accommodating. They each asked us individually if we had any areas to concentrate on and where we might have extra stress. They were gentle and firm all at the same time. I nearly fell asleep many times and after the hour was over, I wanted more! I should've booked a longer massage. They were very professional, very kind and the highlight of the experience was the massage.

After we finished our massage, we decided to spend some time in the steam room. This is a great way to extend your relaxation through the calming effect of the warm air. We were able to relax together in the co-ed area of the steam room and really enjoyed the amazing light therapy and music they had during the experience.

Would I Recommend this Spa?
I would recommend this spa to anyone in the downtown area that is looking for a great massage and not a full-day, special spa experience. We had to travel over an hour to get to the spa and the traffic was difficult downtown. I would probably look for a place that had a co-ed sauna, larger relaxation area and more luxurious surroundings for a special occasion. Let's not forget the day at the spa is not an inexpensive one and for me, I feel like I might get more for my money elsewhere.

Posted by JoEllen Amato on 10/22/2010

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