Must-Do Spa: Gaylord Texan’s Relache Spa

Crossing over the bridge into Gaylord Texan hotel territory is like entering a city. You almost need a map to navigate. Once I chased down a few signs and found Relache Spa was located, I parked under a shady tree and headed into the the Riverwalk Atrium. I immediately felt like I was on vacation entering the river walk side of the resort hotel.

It’s on par with the Ritz-Carlton’s spa in terms of friendly concierge, amenities, and cozy quiet room. There’s even a lounge for men and women to mingle (good for couples’ spa days) and a ladies only lounge. Plus, there are plenty of amenities, including steam and sauna rooms and rows of products for showering post treatment. The menu includes massages, facials, manicures, pedicures, full body treatments, and a few fun seasonal treatments, like a Vanilla Ginger Massage and the Spike Pumpkin Pie mani/pedi special. But I highly recommend a facial. With Mendy Boisseau, lead aesthetician at the spa. Skin Authority invited me in for a complimentary treatment on the house, the Microderm Transformation Facial. It’s a pricey little bugger at $225, but it includes a relaxing cleansing and facial massage with Skin Authority goodness, a skin brightening round of intense exfoliation using the diamond tip microdermabrasion–which utilizes a diamond chip-encrusted wand for sloughing off dead skin cells and a vacuum feature to suck up the dead cell cemetery–a mild-but-effective gycolic peel, and lastly, a slathering of skin-soothing products and layer of Skin Authority SPF.

Microdermabrasion is loved for its visible effects of lightening and brightening, unclogging pores, and reducing the appearance of acne scars. I love it for the resulting baby soft skin that makes me feel like I’ve had a face transplant. But here’s where I think the real bang for the buck comes in: Mendy, my facialist, kept it both relaxing and informative. She put me in a trance with her face and neck massage, then gave me all the pointers I could possibly ask for. Instead of attempting to sell me product, she taught me how to put them to better use. She explained each step of the treatment process so I understood what was happening to my face and explained how skin cells work. She helped me rework through the appropriate skin care regimen based on my skin type, age, and aesthetic concerns.

I left her table giddy, relaxed, and excited for my complimentary glass of wine in the quiet room, but armed with a few new tips for caring for my new face at home. The best of both worlds. I highly recommend the experience at this spa and a trip under the able hands of skincare guru Mendy Boisseau. I’m looking forward to my next visit to Atlantis, I mean, the Gaylord Texan.