How a few days at the Springs Resort will melt away your stress
The Springs Resort — Photo courtesy of Marla Cimini
Otherworldly, serene, meditative, healing – all of these adjectives have been used accurately to describe Springs Resorta unique tranquil wellness destination nestled in the majestic Rocky Mountains of Pagosa Springs, Colorado.
Located along the scenic San Juan River, this secluded and rustic resort features 25 naturally heated geothermal pools of varying sizes and shapes, perched on a multitude of outdoor decks overlooking stunning views. This view includes the quaint town of Pagosa Springs, known for its more than 300 days of sunshine each year. On cold days, the scene can be described as truly magical, with steam slowly rising from these warm, mineral-rich waters against the blue sky, creating an ethereal panorama.
Travelers and spa-goers who incorporate hot spring spas into their regular routine are likely familiar with the hydrotherapy treatments offered at spas around the world. However, “balneotherapy” is the official term for bathing in thermal waters, which usually contain a number of minerals, such as salts, sulfur and other organic elements. According to Global Wellness Summitbalneotherapy comes from ancient traditions of using water for well-being.
Sharon Holtz, Director of The Springs Wellness Centre, says: “Geothermal baths have many health benefits and more research is being published every day to support this. Soaking in geothermal water boosts the body’s immune system, increases your blood circulation, and helps rid the body of toxins, so it’s wonderful to plan your trip around a geothermal spa.
The Source Mother is the deepest in the world
The Springs Resort Mother Spring — Photo courtesy of Marla Cimini
The Springs Resort is considered unprecedented as it is home to the deepest geothermal hot spring in the world (over 300 meters deep and authenticated by Guinness World Records). Known as Mother Spring, this bubbling 144-degree Fahrenheit pool is far too hot for soaking, but it powers the other 24 nearby pools, which range in temperature from 80 to 114 degrees. The Springs Resort is just one of many places in the area to receive water from this artisanal spring, which also provides heat to schools and other buildings in the area.
Holtz explains, “Due to the depth of the mother spring and the unique makeup of our minerals, we’ve found that guests often travel here to soak – even though they live closer to other hot springs.”
Springs Resort with bathers — Photo courtesy of Marla Cimini
The station has evolved slowly over the years. Centuries ago, the springs were used by native tribes, and the name ‘Pagosa’ is derived from the Native American Ute word for ‘healing waters’. The first incarnation of the spa dates back to the 1800s and the first modest hotel was built in the 1950s. After many changes, renovations and additions, the resort today has several buildings (the newest dating from 2008) and has 79 bedrooms.
According to Holtz, The Springs is a one-of-a-kind resort because it features a unique combination of wilderness, natural beauty, and the distinctive mineral content of hot springs. She says, “There’s really something special about our location because it’s surrounded by mountains and the river is a short walk from the pools. Soaking here really transports you to another place. The physical and mental stress simply disappears.
Although the resort is isolated and considered a top destination for many, it is open to everyone and offers a family atmosphere.
Holtz emphasizes that the station has a strong commitment to the community. “We have a contingent of local members who take full advantage of coming in for a soak several times a week as part of their personal wellness.” She continued: “We understand this is a wellness resource and we want to make sure it is something that continues to be accessible for our local community. We believe in providing wellness opportunities for everyone.
Not to mention that the location of the springs next to the river means that guests can enjoy a contrast bath, which involves immersing your body in the hot springs and then plunging into the cold waters.
Unique spa activities at The Springs
Springs Resort Pools and Bridge — Photo courtesy of Marla Cimini
In addition to bathing in the springs, guests can partake in small-group aqua yoga in the hot pools, which helps stretch muscles and provide even more relaxation. The resort also offers guided contrast swimming. This “warrior dive” offers support for first-time buyers by a spa expert.
In 2021, Holtz introduced a brand new, unique activity at the spa, called “aquatic sound bath,” featuring Tibetan singing bowls. Guests feel the vibrations of the bowls while soaking, which resonate throughout the body. She says, “We started experimenting with this and found it to be a powerful and meditative experience. You can see how the water ripples in response to organic sound, as listening to nature carefully can be incredibly relaxing while reducing stress levels.
The Springs continues to evolve its wellness offerings, which will include elements in the water and outdoors in nature.
How to visit the Springs Resort
The Springs resort overlooking the river — Photo courtesy of Marla Cimini
The closest airport to The Springs is in Durango, Colorado, although Denver and Santa Fe, New Mexico are also within driving distance.
The resort offers 79 rooms and suites, ranging from classic to deluxe and deluxe categories, all with 24-hour access to the hot springs.
However, you don’t need to stay at the Springs Resort to enjoy the springs. The resort offers a “day pass” experience where you can pay $49 for the day and enjoy the springs and pools. There’s access to showers and lockers, and there’s also a cafe and bar on-site. Residents who reside within 60 miles of the station can take advantage of an annual subscription for $29 per month.
Peak season for The Springs is summer and winter. Besides the hot springs, this stunning area offers an array of other activities including hiking, hot air balloon rides, horseback riding, kayaking, canoeing, star gazing, rafting, exploring the center -town of Pagosa Springs and an abundance of winter activities, as well.