Back (Rub) at the Ranch: The Dude Ranch/Spa Combo

by  Nora Zelevansky | Jun 6, 2011
Hacienda Santa Ines
Hacienda Santa Ines / Photo courtesy of the property

In the Wild West, scalps weren’t massaged – they were removed. Yet cowboy retreats from California to Costa Rica are trading leather for lavender and treating guests to some ranch-inspired pampering.

Hacienda Santa Ines, Costa Rica

The Ranch This winter, the 11-room Hacienda Santa Inés ranch debuted in a prime locale in Costa Rica – 5,000 feet up in the Tres Rios Mountain range. The 980-acre private estate features a 16-stall stable and lush gardens. ATV rides and trout fishing can be arranged.
The Spa Guests can book customized treatments 24/7 at the stone-designed spa, which is conveniently built beside the pool.
Signature Rubdown A four-hand massage targets specific muscle groups – upper thighs, glutes, calves – that take a beating on horseback. Villas from $12,000, including meals, drinks, and treatments;

Alisal Ranch, California

The Ranch Open since 1946, the 15,000-acre Alisal Ranch near Santa Barbara, California, offers horseback riding, campfire flapjack breakfasts, bass fishing, Solvang wine tasting, and 73 bungalows complete with fireplaces.
The Spa “We actually built our spa last year at the request of our guests!” says Marcy Payne, Director of Activities. Designed to evoke an old-fashioned ranch feel, the six treatment rooms feature river rock fireplaces, Pendleton blankets, and sepia-tone artwork.
Signature Rubdown The Chumash Indian-derived Nojoqui body wrap uses local mud. Rooms from $495; massages from $125;

Estancia Vik, Uruguay

The Ranch “Marlboro country meets San Tropez” at Estancia Vik, a new Spanish Colonial ranch retreat in the secluded José Ignacio region of Uruguay. At this beach-adjacent outpost, city slickers can horseback ride gaucho-style, sample parrillero (BBQ), and play polo.
The Spa Therapists give sports, hot stone, and deep tissue massages in rooms adorned with murals by artist José Trujillo.
Signature Rubdown Owners Alex and Carrie Vik created treatment potions that utilize yerba mate and wine from their own vineyard in Chile’s Millahue Valley. Rooms from $500; massages from $80;

Brush Creek Spa, Wyoming

The Ranch Wyoming’s new 37-room Lodge & Spa at Brush Creek Ranch was an active Angus farm in the 1880s. These days, as cattle roam the property’s 13,000 acres, visitors fly fish, hunt deer and buffalo, and hike or bike across 50 miles of wooded trails.
The Spa Brush Creek Ranch’s Trailhead Spa offers massages, facials, and energy treatments – with sessions available in teepees or yurts.
Signature Rubdown The Spirit of Brush Creek packs a dry-brush exfoliation, head-to-toe painting with Ylang Ylang and sandalwood, and a body wrap into one treatment. Rooms from $720; massages from $145;

Use our Travel Search price comparison tool to find the lowest rates and travel deals on hotels, flights, vacation packages, and more.

Find The Best Cruises
Find a cruise

Find the best deals!

Click on multiple sites to get the lowest prices

Click on multiple sites to get the lowest prices