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If January’s a time for resolutions, then February must be for realism. Something everyone can commit to long-term is self-care, and we’re here to help with reviews of six Nevadan spas, where we tried out treatments for hair, feet, and (almost) everything in between. If you have suggestions to add, send them to us! Meantime, happy relaxing.

Hot Stones on a Cold Day

The caldarium at Spa Toscana. A large fountain protrudes from the center of the pool.
Peppermill Reno

The Peppermill Resort’s Spa Toscana is a warm hug for the winter weary

As much as I love northern Nevada, I’m not a fan of the cold. That’s especially true on those days when the blustering wind whips through the frozen Sierra and into the valleys. It doesn’t seem to matter how many layers I’m wearing — that cold wind cuts through me. When it becomes too much to bear, I can think of nothing better than a schvitz to get the feeling back in my toes.


The three-story, 33,00-square-foot Spa Toscana and Salon is inspired by ancient Roman baths, from the top of its caldarium to the washroom floors. The Mediterranean theme is featured heavily throughout the property and adds a dated elegance to the experience. And since I was looking for something a little extra, a hot stone massage, this seemed like just the place.

Patrons who book a treatment or purchase a day pass are free to use any of the amenities on the first and third floor, including gendered steam rooms, saunas, and cascading showers. They can also spend the day lounging on the coed sun deck, order a drink around the indoor pool, or zone out while watching magnificent landscapes unveil themselves on a giant high-def screen in the darkened relaxation room.

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After exploring the spa’s amenities, I found my way to the treatment waiting area on the second floor. Soft music and softer light enveloped me as I poured myself a hot tea. I watched as others wandered about — most glowing like someone pampered into euphoria. Eventually, my massage therapist, Chris, led me to a private treatment room.

Chris was a great choice for someone, like me, who was looking for warmth. As I lay on a heated table, he used hot rocks to smooth out the stress and tension knots that had coiled their way across my back during the holidays. When he would finish one area, he’d wrap it in hot towels, moving from my back to my arms and then my legs. I felt warm, relaxed, comfortable, and, most importantly, happy.


You know that feeling of standing for the first time after receiving a heavy sedative? When your body feels like rubber, and your limbs are useless? When your eyes glaze over and the threat of drooling becomes real?

It was kind of like that, only better.

Paul serves as KNPR's producer and reporter in Northern Nevada. Based in Reno, Paul specializes in covering state government and the legislature.