Travel Inspiration: VALEO Spa in Chicago

June 09, 2011

Recently it was my pleasure to visit

a wellness and fitness center
located in the J.W. Marriott
in downtown Chicago.

Valeo surpassed my expectations.

Katie Hurley
brainchild of Valeo
prefers not to refer to this place of renwal as "spa,"
which may seem curious until you
experience its treatments and amenities.

Valeo is not one of those foo-foo
dayspas with heavy aromatics hanging in the air
and offering salon services or blow-outs.

Valeo is different.
It's an underground paradise hideaway.

You feel not just worlds away within its walls,
but since it draws inspiration from ancient traditions,
it also feels centuries away and temple-like.

Valeo features the only CLARITY CHAMBERS
(seen above) in the country.

I absolutely adored the chamber.

Covered with Turkish wraps,
I reclined on an enormous slab of marble
heated from within.

The fireplace with its modern stainless surround
added ambience and enhanced the mood.

So difficult to summon at times.
And yet it comes in the chamber.

The relaxation area is beyond comfortable
and where I was lucky enough to
chat with Ms. Hurley about everything
from hormones to existential angst to urban renewal.

I loved her philosophies about wellness,
the value of intuition, and why I ought never to
feel guilt about caring for my body-spirit-mind.

I have yet to experience fitness at Valeo,
but I hope to in the future as the inspiring
Shea Vaughn offers Shea-netics
right here.

Beautiful areas at Valeo to refresh before and after
treatments are everything you would
expect from a world class center, and my guide
Patricia was delightful on the tour.

My therapist Cheryl discussed my
concerns and preferences before
my facial treatment, which was indeed
customized especially for me and simply
THE best experience.

The products utilized by Valeo are phenomenally
effective (omg the Kaplan M.D. serum!),
and I floated away feeling not so much pampered,
as fed, cared for, heard, and honored.

Peace to you, right where you are.

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  1. Sounds heavenly and I too would totally opt for something like this over an average holiday.

    Ms Hurley? Wow, really? Spill!

    Meera xx

  2. I tried to leave a comments and got lost.. anyways, I was saying that I really admire places that truly care about what they do and go an extra mile to make you feel happy there. This place seems to be great because takes care not only of your body, but your soul. I like that!

    I'm going to start make the bagels now. Yesterday I had to go somewhere and took too long to come back home and start baking, so I left it for today. Not only I;m excited about this, but also my husband and kids. We'll bake it together. I can't wait! Thanks again, sweetie.

    Have a blessed weekend, Michele.


    Luciane at

  3. I'm so envious that you got to experience such a Body & Soul enriching place such as this. Thanks for sharing the experience...

    Dawn... The Bohemian

  4. You lucky girl! Sounds absolutely heavenly, Michele. A place for the body and the heart to be spoiled royally.

    It is so good to be back there after a my whirlwind trip to Sweden. And I am so happy that I can comment again. Thank you for the technial fix!

    Happy weekend dear.


  5. oh that we could all gather at Valeo for a big beautiful blogfest. it was the sweetest escape!

  6. I get a facial once a month but I don't come away feeling like what you just described, I'm a tad jealous. Everyone could use a little pampering huh?


Your comments add to the beauty...thanks in advance for your kindness.


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