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Sense, A Rosewood Spa - Review

A Tropical Getaway in the British Virgin Islands

by Sandy Samuels

A view from the spa pool at Sense, A Rosewood Spa™
A view from the spa pool at Sense, A Rosewood Spa™

Sense, A Rosewood Spa™ at Little Dix Bay, is perched on a cliffside above the palm frond canopies that stud the resort's half-mile long, curvilinear stretch of white sand beach. The Rosewood Little Dix Bay resort was formerly the Rock Resort, an eco-friendly hotel built before the word "green" was part of the lexicon. It's a seafront botanical garden with 100 luxurious accommodations and super service that's hidden in the lush 500-acre landscape. The bayfront land is one portion of the enormous pristine parcel of Virgin Gorda land that Laurence Rockefeller purchased and preserved (he subsequently donated much of it to the British Virgin Islands National Parks Trust).

The tropical, village-like spa complex An assortment of spa products
The tropical, village-like spa complex
An assortment of spa products

Sense—its tiny, tropical, village-like spa complex—includes six two-room windowed spa cottages (each with private patios) which are clustered amidst the greenery. The centerpiece is an outdoor lounging area on a sunny terrace with an infinity pool and Jacuzzi that sits at the edge of the cliffside. The view from that spot is incredible, overlooking an expansive, 25-mile view of the sea. Bougainvillea, hibiscus and frangipani-lined paths lead to treatment rooms and out to the Yoga Deck, which also serves as a wedding platform. From this vantage point, the distinctly different vista is of the crystalline, clear turquoise waters of the British Virgin Islands.

Sense spa offers changing rooms for men and women; a wet room with a Vichy shower that’s also used for facials; a double Cliff Spa Suite for couples with a whirlpool, indoor and outdoor shower; a manicure-pedicure suite; and a spa boutique. The spa's 26-person staff is trained to take advantage of healthful, indigenous Caribbean traditions that utilize local oils, herbs and flowers. The Little Dix Bay Sampler treats guests to 25-minute samplings of popular treatments: a salt scrub, island massage and facial.

A spa treatment cottage A woman poses on the Yoga Deck
A spa treatment cottage
A woman poses on the Yoga Deck

Hikes, nature walks, and other eco-educational programs complement spa treatments, yoga classes, and traditional Pilates mat sessions.  The signature wellness activity called Poolates™ is an innovative and highly soothing exercise that combines the flexibility and core-strengthening principles of Pilates with the joint-friendly benefits, buoyancy and resistance of water. Group sessions are offered in the stunning resort pool located on ground level next to the beach (near the covered-roof restaurants); private sessions are available to guests staying in the resort’s two luxury villas, which each have individual pools.

Dining options include butler-served dinner for two on the beach and a just-added Sense Spa™ dining menu, which features dishes aimed at helping guests maintain optimal health, including such fresh creations as Sense Waldorf Salad, Ceviche of Tropical Fruits and Vegetables as well as Tandoori Salmon.

Little Dix Bay, A Rosewood Resort
P.O. Box 70
Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands

(Updated: 02/12/09 KR)

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