Hotel Talisa – Vail

Talisa’s Beautiful Waters

It’s no secret that there is a longstanding rivalry between Aspen and Vail. So on one quick weekend visiting Aspen, I felt more than a bit guilty for deserting my old home town to check out Vail’s latest addition: The Spa at the Hotel Talisa. As I drove towards the village of Vail, I asked myself, “was I cheating on Aspen?”

The latest addition to the Marriott’s Luxury Collection, the hotel’s moniker, Talisa, is an Ute Indian girl’s name meaning “beautiful water”; as the resort spans threequarters of a mile along the Gore Creek, the name is most apropos. Cool alpine chic with a very Native American vibe: the use of symbols and patterns can be seen in the artwork and textiles.

The sophisticated guest room included special touches: I longingly eyed the black truffle sea salt pretzels, found comfort in knowing my early morning caffeine fix was a Keurig away, and luxuriated in an amazingly comfy bed. Yes, I wanted to steal it. No struggling into chilly boots, and no schlepping my skis. My warmed boots and hot chocolate awaited at the ski valet and my skis magically appeared at the lift which I could almost touch from my balcony. And I learned one of the local’s best kept secrets, the Cascade Lift (locals’ Chair 20) has no lines even on a pow day.

hotel talisa VailBack from the slopes in time to be spoiled. Who wouldn’t be pleased with Moët Flutes and Frites during après? Later, sitting by the firepit, steps from the infinity pool and surrounded by mountain beauty, I even learned a new word: “s’morelier” (that’s s’more butler for those not in the know). I was totally content.

Heading to the spa the next day, I sipped complimentary bubbles as I lounged before the fire in the relaxation room. Calming colors were interspersed with tiles that piqued visual interest.

Decisions. Decisions. Should I stimulate oxygen flow or rebalance the chakras with vigorous massage treatments? I choose the Himalayan Salt Stone Massage and followed it with a hydrating Alpine Rescue Facial guaranteed to make one’s skin luminous.

Hotel Talisa VailWarm stones from the ancient seas far below the Himalayas were warmed and placed on my upper body. The therapeutic massage melted away the last vestiges of stress. Bliss. My facial was designed to help skin adjust and recover from days of sun and skiing. I needed to rehydrate! The skincare products contained natural-origin ingredients, carefully chosen to ensure efficacy and the ultimate sensory experience — which began with a heavenly aromatherapy oil, infused with peppermint, ylang-ylang, tangerine, and fennel. I asked the therapist about specific ingredients used and was surprised to hear that blueberries and chia seeds were just a few. As I was massaged and moisturized, I was rejuvenated inside and out

Committed to Aspen, I decided occasionally “stepping out” to visit Vail was not something to feel guilty about. In fact, I felt pampered, sated, and ready to return.