Day trip to Sundara Spa – Dells, WI

Took a friend for a belated birthday celebration to Sundara Spa. Was a rather positive experience and here is the synopsis — if and when you find yourself in WI its a place you can go.

Grounds of the spa are peaceful and there are 37 rooms I believe for overnight guests. We had a great day trip with Express Spa services and access to full facility.

The quiet room is a bit tired looking, could use an update but comfy, cozy overlooking the outdoor pool. Yes! even at 48 deg weather it is open. The outside floor is heated, pool is heated and there is hot tub next to it too. Now this is an impressive feature – makes me want to come back when it snows. IMG_2303.JPG
Express Spa package is perfect for a day trip. The practitioners are so good that 35 min are well done. Normally 35 min are never enough for me; barely get relaxing in 30 min. We had massage, facial, and pedi. They use fully vegan organic nail polish, and all of their treatment products are organic. IMG_2310.JPG
While spa services were great and reasonably priced – the food was meh!! Had lunch in between services and lounging; neither dish had much flavor. Later when chatting with other guests we learned people drive elsewhere to eat. We now know why 😉 They can improve this, and we recalled how amazing the food at Kohler Spa and Red Door Spa is. So this was a tiny let down.
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In any case… if you find yourself in WI and want a mid-level Spa experience Sundara will do great! Look at this… who can complain about huddling around an outdoor fire, cozy and brisk at the same time. IMG_2308.JPG

Guest Blogger Edition: Paradise Found at Majahuitas!

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Our good friend M had recently gone on an great trip that made us seriously envy her. She gracefully granted our wish to be a guest blogger and share this special trip with all of you!

In her words:
We needed a getaway from the Wisconsin winter and were craving something unlike our typical educational, sightseeing, ‘pack-as-much-as-possible into each day’ trips we were used to taking. This time we were looking for a place to unwind, eat well, surround ourselves with nature, and above all else, relax and rejuvenate.

Not at all interested in the conventional Mexico spring break trips or all-inclusive resorts jam-packed with people, we thought we found heaven when we came across Majahuitas. It is an extraordinary gem, an hour cab ride and a 15 minute boat ride from Puerto Vallarta. It’s an eco-friendly resort so no electricity – just solar energy for a few sparse lights and not a television, phone, or computer to be found. And I can honestly say I didn’t once miss being ‘plugged in’ during our stay.
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Our casita for the week was the Sunset House, where everything was open-air, including the bathroom & shower. We fell asleep to the sound of the ocean waves crashing against the beach and awoke to tropical birds singing outside our porch.
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The gong rang 3 times daily, signaling it was time to head down to the beach for an amazing meal – most often including a mexican breakfast with fresh fruit, local seafood and tapas for lunch, and a delightful dinner that was enjoyed by all guests, family-style, under a candlelight chandelier.

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After the evening meal and a beach bonfire, we would make our way back to the casita (all the paths and our bungalow were filled with hundreds of handmade candles that were lit while we were dining) to play some cribbage, enjoy our surroundings, and gush about how lucky we were to be staying at such a dream locale.

Some highlights of the trip included an intense hike through the jungle to a beautiful waterfall, an outdoor massage with the babbling river sounds in the background, spotting a sea turtle during our morning kayak excursion, and a little trip to the nearby fishing village of Yelapa – where we saw another gorgeous waterfall along with yoga studios and such for the many ex-pats that live there. Of course, relaxing on the beach with a book and, thanks to the yellow labs at the resort that would bark with excitement and run out to the beach at the first signs of whales and dolphins, we got to add those sightings to our list of great moments.
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It is hard to describe this magnificent place in just a few paragraphs and photos – in fact, now that we’re back in the snow and cold, it seems hard to imagine this treasure of a resort even really existed. It was the perfect marriage of luxury resort/dining and rustic camping. It’s remarkable how much you can leave behind and do without, as long as you have fresh air, good company, and outstanding food. What I wouldn’t do for some fresh octopus and empanadas on the beach right now…