Pennsylvania is a beautiful, wooded state with many major population centers in the state or nearby. That means it has some of the finest -- and one of the most unusual -- resort spas in the country, with chocolate-inspired treatments and plenty of sweets at Spa at The Hotel Hershey. This list represents my picks for the finest overnight spas in Pennsylvania.
Nemacolin Woodlands Resort & Spa in Farmington, Pennsylvania
Located in the southwest corner of the state, Nemacolin Woodlands Resort is a classic resort spa that opened in 1987. It features two 18-hole championship golf courses, downhill skiing, an equestrian center, gaming, family-friendly programs and nearly 100 pampering spa treatments at a 40-room spa. (Nemacolin also has one of the best kids' spas in the country -- The Grove.) Its new Holistic Healing Center offers acupuncture, a select group of healing massages, as well as services like metabolism testing, fitness assessments, and exercise prescriptions.
The Lodge at Woodloch in Hawley, Pennsylvania
A 58-room luxury property, The Lodge at Woodloch is a wellness spa, with great classes, healthy food, and inspiration for a happier, healthier life. It sets the tone with giant crystal chakra bowls in the lobby that create a healing resonance when you play them. Owners John and Ginny Lopis, who live across the street, are a warm presence at dinner. The food is so good you probably won’t lose weight, and it feels like a fine dining experience, complete with live music.
The Spa at The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania
"The sweetest place on earth" is named after Milton Hershey, the chocolate mogul who devoted his fortune to helping underprivileged children. He built the lavish Mediterranean-style hotel in the 1930s, setting it high atop a hill surrounded by 300 wooded acres with running paths. Attractions like Hershey Park, Hershey Gardens, ZooAmerica and Chocolate World are nearby. The large, multi-level spa specializes in chocolate-themed treatments like the “Whipped Cocoa Bath”. After your treatment, you can take the elevator straight down to the Oasis Lounge and eat from a buffet (extra fee.)
Omni Bedford Springs in Bedford, Pennsylvania
There are 8 mineral springs on this property, which became famous as a mecca of rejuvenation after Dr. Anderson purchased the land in 1796. A National Historic Landmark, the resort was returned to its original splendor in 2007 as Omni Bedford Springs Resort. It has a magnificently restored golf course and 30,000 square foot spa that uses natural spring water in all of its treatments.
The Deerfield Health Retreat & Spa in East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania
Nestled in the hills of the Poconos mountains near East Stroudsburg, The Deerfield is a super-affordable wellness spa open from April 15 through October. If you want to have a healthy spa experience but are on a budget, a single room here is around $1520 a week, including meals and programs. It accommodates 33 guests and has cross-training gym hosts everything from sunrise Qi Gong through afternoon circuit training, and evening dance classes to late-night Yoga.