Happy Monday, sweet friends!
(First, let me get this out of the way: this is NOT a sponsored post. I just had such an incredible experience at Miraval in Tucson, I couldn’t NOT share.)
I’ve had dreams of taking a trip to Miraval for a couple of years, but I’ve been in major baby mode for the past years. Earlier this year, The Mister and I were finally able to sit down and nail down a date that worked for both of our schedules. We went from a Sunday morning to Wednesday night, and while I was missing my babies something fierce by the second day, we could have used an extra day. Or three.
You guys. This was unlike any other trip I’ve been on. Relaxing doesn’t even begin to cover it. Rejuvenating. Challenging. Indulgent. Renewing. Invigorating.
Our goal during our stay was to experience something for our mind, body and soul each day. And, we did. Yoga, body scrubs, horse therapy, trail runs, facials, clean food, massages, ropes courses and more…
Before we left, we looked online to scope out which services and experiences we were interested in, but it was very overwhelming. There are SO MANY CHOICES and I wanted to do them all.
Thankfully, as soon as we checked in, we were given a book that had the week’s schedule. It was still A LOT, but it helped us organize our thoughts. Also, whenever we signed up for another activity or spa service, they printed out an updated individualized daily itinerary.
Miraval is an all-inclusive resort and there is a no-tipping rule, so it quickly feels very inviting and not at all stuffy. The staff is incredibly warm and helpful. Maybe it’s in the water at Miraval because we didn’t encounter one rude or snotty service person.
I hope you enjoy! I would love to hear if you’ve even been to Miraval and what you loved the most. We would love to go back and we’re already making a list of what we’d like to do next time.
Also, I haven’t linked any of my looks because I didn’t want this post to be about fashion, so I’ll be sharing a separate post with all of my outfit details tomorrow.
Thank you for stopping by, sweet friends. And thank you to my guy for this amazing trip. I wouldn’t want to recharge with anyone else.
It was a rainy day when we arrived, but that did nothing to stop us from admiring the beauty of Miraval and exploring the grounds. Cell phone usage is frowned upon throughout the resort, but this courtyard is the one exception. I loved that still, most people chose not to use their phones even when visiting the courtyard. I spent a lot of time here reading and drinking my coffee in the sun.
We wanted to make sure we had enough time to explore the property and get our bearings, rather than jumping right into a scheduled experience. And as you can see, we were already taking it all very seriously.
Isn’t he so cute?
We started our first full day with an early morning trail run in the foothills of the mountains.
So many cairns.
AHHH. THE SPA.
I don’t have many photos of the spa because apparently serenity and technology don’t exactly go together, but TRUST. It’s all you want it to be. This is the view from the relaxation deck.
We indulged. We wanted to make sure we fit in a spa session every day, and did we ever. Here’s what we did:
Timeless Facial – (Mine included a cinnamon enzyme peel that made my face feel like it was on FIRE, but I’m in the beauty is pain camp, so it’s all good.)
Hammam – This is considered a “Body Renewal Ritual” and let me tell you: my body felt renewed. 75 mins of a coffee body scrub, a clay body wrap followed by a shower and a massage.
Focus Massage – If there’s a specific area that needs extra attention, this is the way to go. I carry so much stress in my shoulders and back. This mini massage was amazing.
Ginger Healer – This is under the Outdoor Services category, so it’s not in the main spa building. There are little tents (yurts?) that make up this little spa village. If you love deep tissue massage, you need to experience this. It’s followed by a wrap and body scrub and outdoor shower. Heaven.
This Mister also got a haircut while we were there, and it’s one of the best he’s gotten. So cute.
That white horse is 30 years old (even older?) and has been around since the beginning of Miraval’s equestrian program. These days he enjoys being a canvas for the Unforgettable Canvas experience.
Real talk: we didn’t know we signed up for an Equine experience. It was something The Mister didn’t want to do, and I was totally fine with that. My experience with horses has been limited, and that was OK with me.
So, when we signed up for Common Ground: Understanding Barriers to Connection, we thought we signed up for a workshop to talk about…connecting. Through communication. And barriers. Without horses. (Yeah, we didn’t notice that the experience was in the “Equine” category in the book.)
Honestly, we still weren’t tipped off when we climbed into the Miraval truck and bumped down the dusty road on the way to the “ranch.” Hmm. A workshop at a ranch. OK. That checks out.
I noticed that our guides, Tyler and Joni, were wearing cowboy boots. I can appreciate desert style. I’m into it.
When we got to the ranch, we sat down in a circle to talk about ourselves. Joni started. She told us her history with horses. How much they’ve taught her. About life. About communication. And the barriers she’s been forced to face in dealing with…horses.
A little bit of panic set in. I wanted to hide. What the hell did I know about horses?? (Nothing.)
The exercise sounded easy: get Oliver, the horse, to walk around the pen. Or trot around the pen. Pretty much just get Oliver to do what you want him to do.
I’m not going to go into everything that Oliver taught me over the course of my 15 minutes with him.
But, I will say: I believe in horses.
Thank you, Oliver.
QUANTUM LEAP CHALLENGE COURSE
In the past, whenever I thought about Miraval, I thought about the ropes courses. Maybe it’s because of the Real Housewives of New Jersey (remember when they went?), but I knew that I wanted to do some sort of Challenge Course activity.
The zip-lining adventure was full and The Quantum Leap challenge was the only one that fit with our schedule, so we signed up. But, as it turns out, nothing happens by chance. (As if I hadn’t already learned that lesson with Oliver.)
Do you see that 25 foot telephone pole? The objective was to climb it, stand on the little (wobbly) platform on top and then take a step off into…nothing.
Since I’ve done a lot of rock climbing with my brother, I wasn’t afraid of the heights. (I mean, as much as one can not be afraid of being where they’re not meant to be. Did that make sense?) The exposure was intense, but the view was insane. It’s something I want to remember for the rest of my life.
There were 5 of us in our group. We started as strangers and 2 hours later, we were each other’s cheerleaders and support system. It was pretty incredible.
Again, not a lot of photos of the room. Because as soon as we got in, we unpacked, which means my clothes were everywhere.
Oh, also. Why bring clothes? We lived in these robes.
How long do we think it’ll take to convince The Mister that we need an outdoor shower? I know, I know. He’s going to say something about the weather in Chicago. But, STILL.
This was the view from our room. Stunning.
I’m not a foodie (breaking news, I know), which is probably why this is the only photo of the food that I took. This was our first meal and honestly, most of my meals looked like this. Since it’s all-inclusive, you can choose either the buffet (It’s not a normal buffet. Think fancy.) or you can order off the menu. Everything is clean and there is always a vegan option.