3 girls -- one from SF, one from SD and one from LA -- so anywhere in CA would work.
Hey Jen! Here's a few ideas. I'm not sure what moderately means exactly... so i'm probably going to be shooting a little too high on the dollar amount here... but here goes :)
There a lot of great places to chill, but here are a few that I've been to. Haven't been to the spa at all of them. For the more expensive ones, the tip would be to book a cheaper hotel nearby and then set up camp for the whole day to get the most out of the pricey treatments. I'll try to list them in order of pricey-ness.
Montage Laguna Beach - this could be one of the nicest hotels in the world IMO. It's 5 star and right on the bluff overlooking a beautiful beach. The spa is awesome and expensive. They have a great gym which overlooks the spa pool and the ocean so you can workout and take in the view. If you book a treatment here, plan on getting a work out in first and spending the ENTIRE day here to get your money's worth. Alternate accomodation option: Surf and Sand Resort - very nice and on the beach. Still not cheap, but WAY cheaper than Montage.
Montage Beverly Hills Same price as Laguna, but without the view. It's right in town though so easier.
Peninsula Spa is small but really nice. Rooftop pool for lunch makes this a nice option, but pricey.
Bacara Resort & Spa People really seem to like this spot and it always makes a lot of Top 10 lists, but it's comprable in price to the Montage in Laguna and not nearly as spectacular, IMO. But if you want to go up and do wine tasting in Santa Ynez along with spa, this would be a good option.
La Quinta Resort & Club This is one of my favorite places and a great option if you like the desert. The resort is mostly casitas with sprawling grounds. The spa is really nice too. Warm dry air in the desert helps with the relaxation.
Four Seasons Westlake Village This could be one of the nicest spa facilities anywhere so for the money it's a good value. Granted it's not cheap, but you get what you pay for and it's Four Seasons quality. Downside, it's in a random location.
La Costa Resort & Spa This is a more reasonable option, but I haven't seen the spa. This is a large resort with a lot of families, but I imagine the spa would be chill.
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If you're open to something a little more quaint and original, consider the Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort in Avila. It's about an hour north of Santa Barbara.
The suites are quite nice, and your stay gives you free access to the yoga and other on-site classes. You can add on massages, facials and such.
Your room will have a private outdoor hot tub with water from the natural mineral springs. You can also rent a bigger tub for a larger group up on the hillside. There's a heated outdoor pool if you just want to lounge. It's quiet and mellow.
You can hike to an ocean view right from the hotel. Walk or bike to the beach. It's really wonderful. And the nearby town of San Luis Obispo is fun to explore.
I don't know if you ladies like wine tasting, but Napa Valley is a great place for this! Super cheap for the ladies in SD and LA to fly up to San Francisco and drive up to Napa from there! As far as lodging goes, there are always tons of Napa deals on sites like LivingSocial and Groupon.
This would be a more nature-y tranquil experience. Here are the three most popular and highest rated spas in the area. They're all located in
Calistoga just a little north of Napa proper, and they all offer mineral soaks, mud baths, plus great massages:
And of course, tons of wineries and food there. Wineries and restaurants are everywhere. Let me know if you need any suggestions on those!
If you want more of a city experience, another destination option is San Francisco. You could go to
Kabuki Springs & Spa and get a Japanese bathhouse experience. Then there's
Imperial Spa for a Korean bathhouse experience. There's also
Archimedes Banya for a Turkish bathhouse experience. Being bathhouses, they're not for the prude, but quite the experience, especially the Korean one (read the Yelp reviews). Of course, outside of the spa, there's so much to do in SF.
Have fun, ladies! :)
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