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Paraben-free pampering at The Phoenician Add to ...

Scottsdale, once a sunny haven for rich retirees and golf buffs, is now associated less with tanned geriatrics and more with Frank Lloyd Wright, anti-aging facials and cosmetically enhanced cleavage. Once a fertile farming community, Scottsdale retains the charm of a small town – stress can’t thrive on the 18th hole or any sweet spot where the sun shines more than 330 days a year. The ways to get pummelled, peeled and primped in this town are endless. One of the city’s classic feel-good palaces is The Phoenician, the go-to spa to get your Scottsdale glow on.

The treatment

Discerning spa-goers increasingly make a routine point of inquiring about potential additives or contaminants in the latest treatments. The Phoenician’s Papaya Quench Wrap is paraben-free and boasts the papain enzyme to diminish sensitive reactions, making it one of the most in-demand on the menu. Nourishing and regenerative, this organic masque drenches the skin with moisture. My therapist, a no-nonsense virtuoso, begins with a spine-tingling dry brushing to prep the skin for maximum absorption. She then applies a vitamin-rich papaya-based body masque and performs a sedating face massage. A light body massage with a matching lotion finishes off this rehydrating wrap.

The benefits

Puffy much? Studies show that papain stimulates drainage of excess fluids that cause that bloated look around the eyes and jaw line. A more proven ingredient, papaya has been used for centuries as an ideal exfoliant. Fruit enzymes work as catalysts for a multitude of biochemical reactions in the body, from digestion to tissue repair.

The spa

Nestled at the base of Camelback Mountain, The Phoenician Spa adheres to a sleek, clean, contemporary style. Catering to an ever-increasing demand for wraps, masks and salt glows, this impressive full-service facility attracts the top-tier spa talent in the city. If you can swing an overnight, book The Canyon Suites – a higher-end enclave within an already high-end resort. Penthouse-sized suites with a residential feel overlook the most perfect pool lined with cozy, buttercream-coloured cabanas. Chase your spa day with culinary indulgences at J&G Steakhouse; standouts from steamed lobster in Tabasco butter to red-wine-glazed short ribs replenish after a day of lightheaded loafing. Nothing says Scottsdale like tucking into a little something Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s kitchen after a vigorous desert scrub.

The basics

The Phoenician at 6000 East Camelback Rd., Scottsdale, Ariz., 1-800-888-8234, thephoenician.com, $225 (U.S.) for 80 minutes.



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