A Resolution Vacation

Breathtaking ocean views greet you each morning at Canyon Ranch Miami Beach.
Breathtaking ocean views greet you each morning at Canyon Ranch Miami Beach.

If you’re tired of not making good on your annual “get fit, eat better” New Year’s resolutions, perhaps now is the time to set 2014 up for success with a vacation entirely focused on recalibrating your health and wellness. Offering over 200 different service options addressing nearly every element of building (and sustaining) a healthy lifestyle, Canyon Ranch Hotel & Spa in Miami Beach is a luxury, boutique hotel entirely focused on helping guests reach their own personal mind-body potential.

The resort itself is a lovely facility offering beautifully appointed balcony suites with tranquil ocean views. While the sitting room, separate bedrooms, and spacious bathroom are impressive in their own right, it is the in-room mini kitchen that really makes each suite feel like home, allowing extended stay guests to prepare their own food if desired. Tip: There is a Publix conveniently located directly across the street from the hotel. Though savoring the solitude of your comfy suite might be tempting, there is so much more at Canyon Ranch to explore.

The concept behind the resort is to offer comprehensive health and wellness support through a vast array of a la carte services that thread together the most effective elements of cutting-edge Western medicine and ancient Eastern healing modalities. The facility houses a holistic health center (staffed by licensed physicians), a world-class wellness spa, a state-of-the-art fitness center, a nutrition program, four swimming pools, a private beach, as well as offering daily fitness classes and health lectures. The scope of services available can be downright overwhelming, so be sure to begin your visit with a pre-arrival conversation with one of the resort’s program assistants. They’ll be sure to customize a daily schedule built around your unique wellness goals.

But if you decide to wing it, the secret to a happy stay is to remember to pace yourself. Doing too much too fast will only leave you sore and hobbling, and that’s no fun. So structure your days to balance lots of active movement with equal time for stretching, massage, and restorative body treatments. A great way to begin each day is with a centering sunrise walk on the resort’s private beach followed by one or two morning fitness classes (over 40 are offered daily, ranging from gentle movement options like yoga or gyrokenisis, to vigorous cardio and strength training like kickboxing or battle ropes circuits.) Afterward, book a visit to the health center for a life management consultation (stress reduction, smoking cessation, weight loss, etc.) or healing energy treatment. Then, head to the spa for a Canyon Ranch signature Aquavana Experience, a lavish thermal suite offering an array of European-inspired cryo (cold) and thermo (hot) spa cabins, tubs, and aquathermal showers said to have “profound effects on body and soul.” Tip: You’ll want to wear your bathing suit for this. Also, be sure to request a waterproof Aquavana brochure, which offers three different scenarios for navigating the thermal chambers, all of which leave you thoroughly relaxed and rejuvenated.

All of that exercise and activity is sure to leave you hungry. The resort’s onsite restaurant, Canyon Ranch Grill is top notch, serving savory, locally-sourced, breakfast, lunch, and dinner fare that won’t derail all the hard work you’ve put in to honing your health. Tip: For dinner, the herb-encrusted trout with cauliflower mash and zucchini hash brown is a must. The restaurant also boasts an impressive list of sustainable, organic, and biodynamic wines. So indulge in a glass and toast yourself. This is your year of revitalized health. Cheers!


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Written by Bill Heneghan

Bill is an author, investor and serial entrepreneur.