Treetops Life Spa, Port Douglas
Where is it? Tucked in an Australian rainforest setting at the Radisson Treetops Resort and Spa in Port Douglas, far north Queensland. Treetops offers unusual treatments in tranquil, natural surroundings.
What's on the treatment menu? The Shell Creation Rejuvenation is a luxurious skin treatment during which Babor Sea Creation products (from the high-quality German cosmetics brand) are massaged into the skin with seashells. The Treetops Clay Rhassoul Experience is a cleansing body steam using clay. Then there is Lithos Therapy, a treatment based on the simultaneous use of two techniques - heated thermotherapy and chilled cryotherapy. Heated black rocks and chilled white rocks are placed on the body. The heated rocks relax the muscles and allow blood and nutrients to flow freely; the chilled rocks narrow the blood vessels and heal the muscles. Queensland-based sports therapist Kim Serafini came up with the idea of re-inventing hot and cold techniques used in ancient cultures. After consulting geologist Dr Andrew White, Lithos Therapy was born. It didn't take long for the Australian spa industry to embrace it.
How much does it all cost? Sea Creation Shell Rejuvenation will set you back A$330 ($1,915). Treetops Clay Rhassoul Experience costs A$70 for an hour and Lithos Stone Therapy is A$110 for a 90-minute treatment.
What's the ambience like? The Treetops Life Spa is set in a rustic tree house surrounded by a magnificent rainforest and has that unhurried northern Queensland pace. There is nothing more calming than having a warm foot bath on the balcony while you listen to the birds twittering and the trees gently rustling in the wind.
Can I stay there? The resort was recently refurbished. Rooms are spacious, bright and have contemporary furnishings. Many have rainforest views.
What's on the other menu? The Outback Bar and Grill serves Aussie tucker in an outback atmosphere. The more upmarket Wharf Restaurant is a replica of a fishing wharf and serves fresh Australian seafood and fine wines.
What is there to do in Port Douglas? Port Douglas is the closest town to the Great Barrier Reef and is
right on the doorstep of the World Heritage rainforest in the Daintree and Cape Tribulation national parks. There are reef tours to suit every style and budget, from snorkelling and scuba-diving to glass-bottomed-boat trips. Go on a four-wheel-drive safari into the rainforest to see stunning gorges, waterfalls, abundant wildlife and Aboriginal cultural attractions.
What's the bottom line? Rates start at $A135 a person, a night. Radisson Treetops Resort and Spa, Port Douglas, Queensland, Australia, tel: 61 7 4030 4355; www.radisson.com/treetopsau.