Only glorious Walden, with its idyllic thousand-acre sprawl, can revive the brand of the entire state of Ohio. Even the most seasoned spa-goers will find its luxury retreat, Spa Walden, to be a diamond in the rough. Spa Walden’s Proprietor, Barrie Rosencrans, is a nutritionist and yoga instructor who’s made it her mission to install her New York City sensibilities of service, expertise and high-end options to quite possibly the most stunning spa in the country.
Of course eco-conscious, Spa Walden’s products are honest in every way. As Rosencrans puts it, “We try very hard to offer options for every client and the concerns that they deal with. Our Farm Fresh Body line offers completely vegan and gluten free options as well as being 93% to 99% organic.” Understanding happiness is part of health, too, guests are offered complimentary Bissinger’s Chocolates in the spa suite, chocolate which is free trade and is made with less sugar than the norm.
“We also offer a complimentary Chakra experience with fresh mixed teas, hand-picked for our chakras,” Rosencrans explains. “We offer the skin care line Results Rx which offers tremendous results without irritation; this is a product only offered through physicians or spas with Medical Directors on staff.” In sum, the luxurious Spa Walden has put a lot of thought into making you healthy, happy and balanced.
Spa Walden reminds visitors how well privacy defines pampering. They realize time is an indulgence, indulging guests a in half-hour of “relaxation time” before and after every sixty, ninety or one-hundred-and-twenty-minute spa service. So that guests are not moved around from area to area, there are no group lockers: every service is performed in your own private spa suite. You can select your amenities and relish every minute you’re there.
An expert instructor, Rosencrans has built a yoga regimen utilizing Hatha & Raja yoga styles to accommodate all shapes, sizes and skill levels in their state-of-the-art studio. She recruits world-renowned teachers to teach private classes, ashtanga, power Vinyasa flow, slow Vinyasa flow, restorative yoga, pre/post natal — and meditation on the sprawling green grass. Picture yourself stretching, overlooking the scenic vista of the great Western Reserve, followed by a Jacuzzi soak the staff has warmed up for you in your spa suite.
If this out-of-the-way oasis makes you feel transported, it’s because you actually really are. Famed architect John Terrence Kelly worked to give Walden, a unique property and resort development about 40 miles outside Cleveland, a sensual, spacious feel. Walking down the wide glass corridors, you are among idyllic elements. Green as far as the eye can see, perfectly manicured flowerbeds, and horses frolicking free in the afternoon sun.
But whatever you do, don’t overlook Walden in the winter months. The bright, crisp air is excellent for a brisk walk along the grounds. Or sit in the library and have afternoon tea while contemplating the excellent food you’re about to eat in their health-conscious, on-site restaurant, The Barn, which, like the rest of Walden, doesn’t compromise its pleasure principle. Everything from The Barn is homemade by their purist chef, Thomas Dech, who makes his stocks from scratch and flies in the freshest fish, fowl and meats daily. The selection of soups is vast–at least six soups available a night–all fresh homemade and so creative they’re artisan, including chilled strawberry with a creme fraiche drizzle, curry mussel bisque, and roasted yellow bell pepper and shiitake mushroom. An unexpected epicurean delight in an elegantly refurbished 175-year old barn, as deliciously decorated as the menu it serves.
Dech’s almost 30-year tenure creating Walden’s healthy, tasty options doesn’t mar his commitment to customers’ needs. If you desire it, Dech will find a way to prepare it. His ingredients are mindful, using fruit and roasted vegetable sauces to cut down on calories. Vegetables of the day are consistently steamed only, and, as you can imagine, The Barn doesn’t have any version of a deep fryer. With house specialties such as Roast Chilean Sea Bass with Lobster Sauce and the Sliced Breast of Duckling with Morello Cherry Sauce, it’s doubtful you’ll be longing for off-the-menu options. But this is a place where pleasure is nothing short of satiated.
address: Walden 119, Aurora Hudson Road, Aurora, OH 44202
phone: (330) 995-9772