Hurrah! My daughter,
Erica, and I finally found some time in our hectic work schedules
to go away together. After much research, we agreed on a stay
at Lake Austin Spa in Texas. It was a lovely week of relaxation
and renewal --a perfect girls-only kind of paradise.
Pampering actually began
the moment Sarah, the spa's driver, spotted us at the airport.
She immediately took charge of the suitcases. Our only responsibility
was to get into her air-conditioned van and enjoy the scenic
drive to our destination.
The spa sits right on the
shoreline of tranquil Lake Austin. A profusion of bright flowers
fill the clay pots dotted 'round the beautifully maintained grounds,
blossoming vines make their way across arbors and you can pick the
fruit from the peach, pear and fig trees on the property. Sound
splendid? It was, with a capital "S."
loves boxercise, Mom practices meditation....
Happily, the spa program
is designed to suit diverse ages, interests, and multi-levels
of fitness -- perfectly suitable for an inter-generational
vacation. Erica loved the aerobic challenge of boxercise classes
and circuit training in the gym. I went on early morning powerwalks
and tried to master the basics of meditation -- chanting,
"oh-h-h-m-m-m-m" in the late afternoons. Erica used the treadmill,
I went to stretch classes. On the river, my daughter learned
the art of sculling while mom burnt calories by pedaling a
waterbike. Our big city senses were bombarded with refreshing
new sights -- lazy hawks circling overhead, big turtles sunning
on the rocks and a blue heron picking his way among the reeds.
reads at the pool, Mom enjoys a hammock...
Of course, guests can
be as busy or as idle as they choose to be. When my daughter
needed a break, she relaxed by reading at the outdoor pool.
I, on the other hand, lay in a hammock shaded by two huge
trees, listening to the birds calling to one another. Each
of us, in our own way, was slowly unwinding.
And we were being perfectly
pampered! Every day we chose from a list of over twenty different
treatments and beauty services with tantalizing titles --
Honey Mango Scrub, Texas Two Step Reflexology, Swedish relaxation
massage and OJA, an Indian Ayurvedic treatment that cleanses
and then nourishes the body. As the week wore on, Erica and
I joked privately about how beautiful we were becoming.
craves chocolate pecan pie, Mom picks perfect pancakes...
All one needs is one
meal in the spa diningroom (with it's picture-glass windows
overlooking the water) to understand that healthy low-fat
food is not necessarily boring food. We were offered so many
choices-- from the grilled fish of the day to vegetable stir
fries and chicken frajitas, each was seasoned inventively
and served with a smile. Erica is still dreaming about the
Friday evening Texas Bar-B-Q and the Chocolate Pecan Pie she
loved. I enjoyed the blueberry pancakes enough to order them
each and every morning and we both had at least one serving
of low fat yogurt once during the day. We both lost weight!
True, my daughter and
I are at very different stages of our life and looking for
different forms of relaxation. How nice it was to find one
special spot that could offer each of us, alone but together,
the very particular nurturing that we needed at that moment.
Next year, we're thinking of adding Erica's grandmother to
the equation. I'll bet that could work too!
Ed. note: For
information and rates, visit the Lake Austin Spa's website at
or contact them at 1-800-847-5637. I'm sure that even over the
phone you'll get a sense of their wonderful Texas hospitality.