by Heather Vuchinich
Is there such a thing as healthy indulgence? On a recent visit to Meadowood Resort and Spa in Napa Valley, I made it my goal to find out. After arriving at the poolside spa and fitness center, I met up with spa director Kerry Brackett to try out Meadowoodâ€™s newly launched â€śEco-Fitnessâ€ť program. Designed as a personalized outdoor fitness class, this unique experience includes a trainer guided series of stretches, weights, and a hike through a portion of Meadowoodâ€™s stunning 250-acre property. Upon completion of the hour plus workout, I returned to the spa for a seasonal fresh juice drink with ingredients sourced directly from Meadowoodâ€™s organic gardens.
Pumped up on sun sourced Vitamin D, fresh air, endorphins, and the gorgeous views of the Napa Valley, I was feeling pretty good after finishing my workout and more than ready for something cool and refreshing. My â€śSpring Blendâ€ť cold pressed juice was a fresh and flavorful combo of veggie goodness which included Chantenay & Kuroda Carrots, Red Cardinal Spinach, and Bronze Fennel.
Having fulfilled the healthy portion of my â€śhealthy indulgenceâ€ť experiment, it was time to indulge. So after a sauna in the womenâ€™s locker room, I was ready for the next item on my agenda: a Valley Stone Massage. Thereâ€™s probably nothing better than a good workout followed by a hot stone massage. Sore muscles melt under the weight and gentle warmth of the stones, while stress and tension dissolve like a hot knife cutting through butter. I particularly loved how my practitioner used a firm touch on my feet, which, post Eco-Fitness, particularly appreciated the deep pressure and extra attention.
Basking in my massage haze, I decided to continue with the indulgence portion of my visit and so headed over to Meadowoodâ€™s lobby for complimentary wine and freshly baked cookies, offered every afternoon from 4:30-5:30. After enjoying a glass of red and a few delicious cookies, I wandered back to my gorgeous â€śOakviewâ€ť room to relax even more.
While you could describe the rooms at Meadowood as â€ścabin styleâ€ť it would a serious understatement. With spacious bathrooms (including a deep marble soaking tub and walk-in shower), silver fixtures, fireplace, a luscious bed, a view of the trees, and all the privacy you could ask for, Meadowoodâ€™s accomodations are nothing short of luxurious.
Though Meadowood is known for its Michelin starred restaurant, I decided to venture into nearby St. Helena for a delicious and yes, indulgent, dinner that included an extremely satisfying pistachio milkshake for dessert.
The next morning, fearing Iâ€™d tipped the balance and was veering a bit too far into the indulgent end of things, I set out determined to enjoy more of the broad range of health and fitness options at Meadowood. Though I had initially planned to take a yoga class (one of many indoor classes offered daily at the fitness center), I found I couldnâ€™t resist a tennis lesson on one of the resortâ€™s many outdoor courts.
After my hour long lesson, I took one more sauna and then enjoyed a short walk around the grounds, ending my Meadowood experience in a happy state perfectly balanced somewhere between healthiness and indulgence.