Rooftop rub-a-dub at Spa Vitale
When the Drifters sang “Up On The Roof,” they surely weren’t imagining a scene as luxurious as the one you’ll find atop the Hotel Vitale. Along with a series of interconnected, astro-turfed decks that allow you to take a slightly disconcerting stroll above the Embarcadero, the Vitale’s in-house spa offers a signature rooftop “Bathing Ritual”. It’s a one-of-a-kind urban indulgence that leaves you feeling utterly relaxed and gloriously spoiled.
Step off of the Financial District into the serene, earthtoned environs of the Vitale (Chosen as one of the World’s Best Business Hotels by Passport in 2010) and ascend to the penthouse level. After changing into one of the spa’s incredibly comfy robes (Yes, all spas seem to have comfy robes…but these are actually worth mentioning), you’ll be escorted to one of two outdoor tubs surrounded by natural privacy walls of tall green bamboo.
While set within raised wooden structures, these are hardly hippie-style Northern California hot tubs, but full length polymer bathtubs, scrupulously cleaned and refilled for each guest. Its a strange, soothing feeling to stretch out in a lotion-infused outdoor bath in the midst of the city, nibbling your tubside snack of fresh fruit and sipping a warm cup of herbal tea. The Vitale’s carefully curated soundtrack burbles from surrounding speakers, muffling the street sounds down below to help create an oasis of solitude as you stare up at shifting clouds and drifting seagulls, letting the cares of the day slip away.
Before or after your soak, put yourself in the strong hands—and forearms, and elbows—of Kyle Woolley, or one of Spa Vitale’s other licensed massage therapists, for one of San Francisco’s secret spa bargains. In a city where hotel spa massages generally run $120 and up, 50 minutes at the Vitale are $105 (and 10% less on weekdays before 3 p.m.).