Campus-style, oceanfront setting, historic property amidst golf courses and tennis courts, and one of the very few (if not the only) ocean-view gyms on the east coast. Florida’s Ponte Vedra is a well-heeled Jacksonville community and the Ponte Vedra Inn & Club as well as the Spa at Ponte Vedra (www.pvresorts.com) mirror that.
A 30-minute drive from downtown Jacksonville, the property includes a large and well-equipped oceanfront gym, two 18-hole golf courses and a golf club, four restaurants, oceanfront guest accommodations and 15 tennis courts. A spa was added in 2006.
Spa at Ponte Vedra Inn & Club has something for everyone
Beautifully-appointed, the spacious Spa at Ponte Vedra Inn & Club is housed in its own building, a three-minute walk from the historic main inn. There are 22 treatment rooms, a large hair salon and mani/pedi area with its own garden, a private dining room and a heated outdoor pool/water circuit.
The theme is water and, no matter where one is in the spa, it seems as if there is a water feature either visible or within ear shot. The most imposing is the mermaid and seahorse fountain which acts as a visual divider and is the central focus of the dining room and spacious, co-ed relaxation lounge. “Lots of people fall asleep to the sound of water” says Cindy Stucki, spa concierge. She should know. The former head of fitness, Stucki has been at the property for the last 20 years and still teaches aqua several days a week.
The spa also boasts a dedicated spa chef and the dining room general serves a-la-carte selections daily unless super busy when they present a $20 buffet instead.
Opened in late 2006, the spa has a strong local membership but even members who are not booked for a spa treatment have to pay the $50 fee for a day pass to use the facilities including the dining room and lovely outdoor pool/water circuit complete with five different hydro therapy grottos. Landscaping create a buffer between the pool and the golf course just beyond.
This is a sprawling and spacious spa but I liked the fact that designers have given it a more intimate feel by breaking up the treatment area into pods of three or four rooms each. The same holds true for the change room with its rich, wood-paneled lockers. There’s also a smaller, quiet room with settees comfy enough to curl up and nap. Dimmed lights act as encouragement. Even with 200 guests a day, one can find a quiet corner. Guests help themselves to tea, citrus water and fresh fruit.
Just off the spa’s reception, a large retail area carries a number of organic, medical and mineral product lines plus they are the only spa in the state carrying Omorovicza, a high end mineral cosmetology line with elements from the mineral baths of Budapest.
At the recreation centre, located a short walk from the spa in its own separate building, the large and well-equipped gym is one of the very few on the east coast with a full ocean view. You can watch the waves rolling in (or the action around the outdoor pool) while lifting weights or on a treadmill.
Bonus marks to the resort for keeping the family pool well away from the adult pool. We all appreciate the quiet. The gym also includes four studios and offers a wide and diverse option of classes (both indoors and out) seven days a week and most are free to guests. Classes include “aquacize,” indoor cycling, core training, water jogging, restorative yoga, beginner running and distance cycling.
This resort is a good choice for someone who wants their vacation days filled with plenty of scheduled, fit-focused activities including the option of golf and a tennis school.
For more on Ponte Vedra Inn & Club, go to: www.pvresorts.com.
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