GET OUT: Staycationing in Jackson Hole

By on March 25, 2015
A blissful guest enjoys some afternoon sun on the rooftop hot tub. (Photo credit: Elizabeth Koutrelakos)

A blissful guest enjoys some afternoon sun on the rooftop hot tub. (Photo credit: Elizabeth Koutrelakos)

Jackson Hole, Wyoming – As the off-season nears, I’ve found myself dreaming of a nice getaway. Work schedules and other various commitments restrict the amount of time many of us have to puncture through the Jackson bubble. So I thought for a while, racking my brain for a myriad of ideas to feel like I’ve gained rest while treating myself to something akin to a vacation.

This weekend, my dear cousin from Boston was in town visiting and had the idea of staying at a hotel in Teton Village and “spa hopping.” Spas have always been a mystery to me. I’ve seen people in fancy robes coming and going from them but never knew what actually happened behind closed doors . To me it was a new adventure, so I agreed, unsure of whether or not I would like it. We scheduled various spa treatments from different hotels. A massage here, a facial there, all the while staying at Hotel Terra so we could retreat to the comfort of our rooms without having to drive anywhere.

I learned a lot this week. Upon my first visit to the Chill Spa at Terra, I was greeted by Alison, a knowledgable spa worker. I was planning on checking out the steam shower, but she showed me a myriad of organic face creams, masks and lotions that were available for sampling. After providing dummy-proof instructions on what I should do to my face, I entered the steam shower, mask and all.

Watching a beautiful sunset from the infinity pool. (Photo credit: Elizabeth Koutrelakos)

Watching a beautiful sunset from the infinity pool. (Photo credit: Elizabeth Koutrelakos)

On this day, I became aware of the wonders of face cream. I’m not sure if my face actually looked different, but I felt different, lighter, cleansed in a new way. I soaked in my new skin in the relaxation lounge at Terra where I sipped on fancy teas I never knew existed. From there we ventured to the rooftop hot tub which was sunny and had a wonderful view of the mountains. After soaking up enough Vitamin D, we checked out the infinity pool which was nice, but not as hot. By mid afternoon, the pool was filled with children and we had to go. We had a schedule. We were spa hopping.

From here, my cousin and I ventured to the Four Seasons for a massage. Their spa was completely different. It was underground and dimly lit. The venue itself bigger, but it didn’t have as many samples for face concoctions. Upon beginning my massage I was faced with a litany of decisions such as choosing massage oils, essential oils, and a specific type of massage. As I am new to these kinds of things, I had no idea what to pick so requested the “regular massage.”

Although my massage therapist looked perplexed, she helped coax me through and eventually I relaxed on a heated table and simply existed. Unfortunately, a simple massage grants the use of the spa but not the outside hottubs themselves, which are only for guests of the hotel. I was a bit disappointed because I heard they give out fresh smores. However, I found a way to manage my transient sadness and move on with my day.

From there, we got dressed and enjoyed one of the free Rendezvous concerts at Teton Village. I’ve been to many of these shows, but all of them have ended with the worry that I’ll have to wait hours for the mass transit system among throngs of drunkards. In the past, I’ve been on some terrifying bus rides where Village guests get angry they can’t fit on the bus and madness ensues. It has taken me hours to get back to town as the dedicated bus driver tries to calm insubordinant passengers. Plus, have you ever been on a bus that the masses are pushing around while someone vomits beside you? It’s pretty disgusting and traumatizing.

On this particular occasion, I felt liberated, as I was staying in the Village. No worries of driving or getting to and from were in my mind. I thought that I would stay out late, finally hang with the late night crowd for once in my life. This has never happened and it still did not happen on this occasion. I walked back and nestled in my plush queen-size bed and suddenly understood why so many visitors flock to Teton Village, bask in their hotel rooms and the glory of having nowhere to go and nothing to do. For the first time this winter, I felt like I was really on vacation.

The stylish decor inside Hotel Terra. (Photo credit: Elizabeth Koutrelakos)

The stylish decor inside Hotel Terra. (Photo credit: Elizabeth Koutrelakos)

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