Friday, June 12, 2009
Last week, I spent some time writing about taking a STAYcation, a vacation right in your own home. I started with some tips on how to transform your backyard and bedroom, into a 5 star resort. So lets continue today with the part of your transformation process I would like to call, STAYcation Relaxation. So, here are some tips on turning your bathroom into a luxury spa.I have to say, I have a pretty healthy obsession with hotels. Some people love expensive shoes, I love nice hotels. And let me tell you... a pair of designer shoes and a night at a fabulous hotel, are not that different in price! With that being said, there are a few things I always look for during my hotel adventures, that separates a nice hotel bathroom from a luxurious, spa-like bathroom. The weight of the towels, a nice terry robe, slippers, fine soaps, bubble baths and seasalts are among the top of my list. The first thing I check out in a hotel bathroom are the towels. Because I am a nutcase, I usually start by counting how many there are. I think I do this because of a french hotel, that scarred me for life by providing only a hand towel to dry off with... so now, I like to make sure I have at least two full towel sets and then some extra bath sheets. The next thing I notice is the color. Hotel towels are ALWAYS white! I always look for a color because, I have never been to hotel that didn't have white towels. Have you? I'd love to know if you have and where it is, because I would need to see this for myself. For your home spa, I think you should pick any color you want. We're trying to make your home into a personal resort for YOU, so add a color that represents your own style and taste. I'm personally stocked, at my home resort, with the Chase Towel, by Sferra shown below. This towel is built with everything you can think of and more, that makes a towel dreamy. To give you a little lesson in towels, a high gram weight is what makes a towel really absorbent and the material is what gives a towel the soft snuggly feel. The Chase Towel, has a 700 gram weight, making it a super absorbent towel. It is woven with plush, looped terry which gives it a luxuriously soft feeling. A quality towel like this, can be hard to find and once you own Chase, you will be drying off in luxury, forever. Another divine towel choice is the Etoile towel, by Yves Delorme, shown below. They are a blend of 100% terry cotton and modal, also a great quality towel that will last forever. They are so silky and soft, I sometimes get out of the shower and just sit around in my towel. Maybe watch some tv, eat some dinner, all the things you can do in a towel, while on STAYcation! Here's a picture of the Etoile Towel, below. Next on my list, of must have amenities, is a bath robe. If you don't already own a bath robe, you really must buy one. Having a big, soft bathrobe to slip on, after stepping out of the shower or getting up after a long soak in the bath tub, is just plain delightful. Plain and simple, a robe is an essential for your home and a necessity for your STAYcation. They are the first thing given to you at a spa to make you feel more relaxed. It's also funny how, when you see a robe hanging in a hotel bathroom, you know your staying in a nice place. The same reaction I have when I see the red soles on a pair of Christian Louboutins, I immediately think luxurious and expensive. It's insane how many kinds of robes there are to choose from. I personally like my robe to be extra soft with pockets, like the Etoile bath robe shown below.The Etoile bath robe from Yves Delorme, matches the Etoile towels mentioned above. The Etoile bath robe is, fo sho, my number one pick for a relaxing bath robe. It is made from a blend of terry cotton and modal. It is so absorbent, you can use it as a towel too. This bath robe is perfect for your STAYcation, it's so cuddley and soothing against the skin. I stated above about the Etoile towels, how I enjoy just sitting in them around the house, well I do the same with the Etoile bath robe. It's a little better of a choice to lounge around the house in and probably a bit more acceptable to answer the door in as well. Here is a picture of me wearing the Etoile bath robe around my family's linen store, Pioneer Linens. The other day I put it on, then got into our display bathtub and pulled the curtain back. One of the sales ladies came over to open the curtain back up, and I popped out and surprised her! It was pretty funny. I always enjoy a good laugh...I also want to share with you the Cairo Bath Robe by Matouk, it is very clean and elegant looking. I think the piping around the collar and the monogramming makes it look extra sophisticated. It is made from 100% Egyptian cotton and has a gram weight of 625, making it very thick and luscious. Here is a picture of the Cairo... Slippers are my next item you must have in your bathroom. Slippers are just like the bath robe, in the sense that they remind us of luxury and relaxation. You can put on some spa slippers and pretend your sitting in first class on a jet to anywhere in the world. An ideal item to give you the feeling your on vacation. They are great for putting you in a complete zen mode. The spa slippers below, are quite comfortable and cozy. They are very well made and 100% terry cotton. The best display I've ever seen of hotel slippers, was at The New York Palace Hotel. The housekeeper came to turn down the bed and laid down a towel on the floor, then put the slippers on top of the towel and laid the robe on top of the bed. It was fantastic and really nice to come back to after walking around the city all day long. The New York Palace has some of the nicest and most courteous staff members, I have ever met. I will definitely be modeling my STAYcation after that hotel. I just wish I could have the same view I had there, from my bedroom window at home! The towels, bath robes and slippers will surely transform your bathroom, but now we need those extra touches that really make it special. When I want to relax and really escape from the world, I love to light some candles, pour in the bath salts and take a nice warm bath. I like a candle that burns for hours, that really gives off a nice sent. The candle i'm really in love with at the moment is, The Lavender Fragrance by Thymes.The smell of lavender is extremely soothing and this particular lavender scented candle, is like having your own lavender garden right in your bathroom. I also like to add some Provence Bath Gel, to suds up my water a bit. It's like traveling to the south of france.The smell is very light and not too perfumey. I also enjoy the soaps and lotions, as well.If your going on STAYcation with your lover, you can make your tub scene romantic by adding some rose petals. Some soft music can also be pretty sweet. I personally, prefer not to share my bath water, but thats just me. Well, I hope this is a good start for making your home a bit more relaxing this summer. If you can think of anything I need to add, just leave a comment!