The luxurious spa at Barton Hill, at the Barton Hill Hotel & Spa in Lewiston, N.Y., may seem like a world away, but it’s just across the Niagara River from Canada.
The relaxing experience begins the moment you arrive.
The 1840s building with turn-of-the-century décor, reminiscent of Buffalo’s Golden Age, has a colourful past. Originally, it was owned by the Trafford family, who made their money in textiles. It has served as a saloon, restaurant, designer show home and even a brothel.
“We believe as a spa that people are coming here to not only experience wellness and relaxation, but to gain knowledge on how they can bring wellness and relaxation into their own lives after they leave the spa,” says Gregory LoBue, spa director of The Spa at Barton Hill, which opened its doors in 2007. “We provide that through education. My passionate therapists pass information on during each of their therapies.”
The Spa’s main floor includes guest reception, a relaxation area and retail space, a haircutting floor, shampoo and hair therapy area and a pedicure station. There are five treatment rooms on the second floor, which are used for both esthetics and massage, including the aromatherapy room. There are also rooms in the hotel for guests who want private services or for groups such as wedding parties.
Spa services include hair therapy, waxing, cosmetics, massage therapies and reflexology, facial and body treatments, manicures and tubeless, germ-free pedicures using a Roman-style pedicure bowl instead of jets.
“Our most popular treatments include the Spa Signature Hot Stone Pedicure, Spa Signature Massage that comes with a take-home scented soy candle, the Spa Signature Facial, which involves hot stones, chakra realignment and a finishing body spritz,” LoBue says.
“The Spa has partnered with Fran LaRocca of Sentir Aromatherapy who has 28 years of experience as an aromatherapist,” LoBue says.
“What makes our union with Sentir unique is she makes organic and natural products for our treatments here. You can go with one of her pre-blended scents or customize your own. Her aromaspa is core now to The Spa. People can take home a liquid memory of their day here at the spa.”
In addition to the aromatherapist, spa staff includes two estheticians, four hairstylists, three nail technicians, five massage therapists, three receptionists and part-timers who are brought in when necessary.
The Spa offers several packages, including a variety of spa/hotel packages – some including meals at The Chantry, the hotel’s lobby restaurant. With advance notice, kosher meals from Alt Fine Foods, under the supervision of Va’ad HaKashrut of Buffalo, headed by Rabbi Moshe Taub, can be ordered.
A favourite spa/hotel package is The Three R’s of Romance, which includes one night in the hotel, dinner with a bottle of house wine, champagne in your room and a couples 60-minute massage or spa pedicures.
Product lines used in The Spa include the hair products L’Anza from Italy; Rusk; Sebastian; Goldwell, and John Masters Organics. For the skin, the spa carries Skeyndor from Spain and Murad. OPI is used for nails, and for makeup, it’s Enjoue.
The Spa’s clientele is 70 per cent female, except for massage, which is a 50-50 split. Its clientele is also split in the middle when it comes to tourists and locals. The Spa also caters to families, offering children’s haircuts, pedicures and manicures.
After years of travelling, hometown girl Diane Finkbeiner came back to the Lewiston area with husband, Ed, to open Barton Hill Hotel & Spa – a deluxe boutique hotel resort featuring king- and queen-sized beds. Some of the modern, warm, chic rooms boast fireplaces, Whirlpool-style tubs or large showers, which general manager Jeff Deming affectionately calls “party showers.” The Barton Hill has a Rolls-Royce with a chauffeur to boot! Lucky guests can feel like VIPs when they book a wine or shopping tour and travel the area in sophisticated style!
The Barton Hill Hotel & Spa is in the heart of Lewiston, the launching point for the War of 1812 and the last stop to freedom on the Underground Railroad. When not being pampered at The Spa, outlet mall shopping or taking the Niagara Wine Trail USA tour, activities can include a visit to see artisans at Art Park, catching free summer concerts at the park every Tuesday night or taking a Whirlpool Jet Boat Tour – a very wet and wild experience on the Niagara River.
For more information about the Barton Hill Hotel & Spa, 100 Center Street, Lewiston, N.Y., call 1-800-718-1812, or 716-754-9070, or visit www.bartonhillhotel.com.