Mountain Blog

An Olympian's Journey
Brian Lawson - Wednesday, December 10, 2014

It might not be a surprise that a two-time Olympic freestyle skier would visit Crystal Mountain. It is a ski resort, right? However, if I told you she wasn’t visiting for the snow or the slopes that might be a bit of a twist. She’s actually here for the spa.

Michelle Roark competed in the Olympic Games held Turin, Italy and Vancouver, British Columbia. She won a silver medal in the 2003 FIS Freestyle World Ski Championships and has six World Cup victories since 1999. This world-class athlete will be at Crystal Spa on Thursday, December 11 (2-7pm) sharing the fruits (or as it happens fragrance) of her other great labor, chemical engineering.

That’s right, next to all those medals for her accomplishments in skiing hangs a degree in chemical engineering and the interesting part is how her life in skiing groomed the way to this new passion. Michelle believes that skiing is about being in tune with the five senses. Judging by her success in the sport you would think each was finely honed but one was more elusive to capture than the others. Sight, sound, touch and taste were in harmony but when she couldn’t find the right fragrance, she developed her own.

Roark’s pursuit to harness the fifth sense led to six years of research and the establishment of Phia Labs. What she found was that the complex molecular structures of nature’s purest ingredients can have a profound effect on a person’s wellbeing, inspiring adventure, focus, balance, imagination and confidence. Each of the five categories can be found on the Phia Energy Spectrum (be sure to give it a look on their website) which classifies the essential oils of plants, flowers and herbs to create a bouquet with distinct purpose to suit each person’s specific needs.

Meet the two-time Olympian and learn more about Phia at the Crystal Spa Open House on December 11. The event is FREE to attend (advanced reservation requested but not required) and includes mini-treatments, food and the chance to win one free treatment per month at Crystal Spa for an entire year!


Conde Nast's "Six Signs" point to something very good at Crystal Spa
Brian Lawson - Friday, July 25, 2014



As a public relations guy who just finished some "field research" at
Crystal Spa I can tell you that it is a life-altering experience. Then again, as the "PR Guy" I probably carry some inherent bias. It doesn't mean I'm wrong but it's understandable if there's a little skepticism.

So when I recently ran across Conde Nast Traveler's post on Facebook, "6 Signs of a Very (Very, Very) Good Hotel Spa" I was intrigued to see how our spa stacked up against their guidelines. After all, it is a travel resource known for its rigorous standards and objectivity.

  1. Separate Saunas and Steam Rooms for Men and Women
    Check! In each of the locker rooms you will find both a eucalyptus infused steam room and an infrared sauna. Both are a good reason to arrive 30 minutes to an hour before your service or for that matter, relax afterward.

  1. No Communal Locker Rooms
    While very well-appointed, guests do have to share space in their respective locker rooms (one for men and one for women). However, there are curtains and private spaces in each if you're on the shy-side when changing.

  1. A Comfortable Relaxation Room
    The picture below speaks a thousand words. Not pictured is the mosaic garden and outdoor hot tub just outside with heated floors so it can be enjoyed winter, spring, summer and fall.

  1. A Well Stocked Spa Bar
    Locally-grown Light of Day Organic Tea, cucumber water, fresh fruit and snack mixes are all complimentary to spa guests with attendants ready to serve from a menu of wines, Champaign, mimosas and Michigan craft beers available for purchase.

  1. Eucalyptus Oil in the Steam Room (AKA The Little Touches)
    See eucalyptus infused steam room above but there are many more little touches worth experiencing like fluffy robes and towels, your own pair of slippers and the beautiful works of local artists like Ann Loveless, winner of Art Prize (Grand Rapids) in 2013.
  

  1. Welcoming and Genuine Staff
    Each month Crystal Mountain honors a staff member with the Service Excellence Award, most of whom are nominated by guests. The Peak Fitness Center and Crystal Spa currently has five award winners (including last year's Service Excellence Employee of the Year).

With Conde Nast's measures of a very, very, very good spa in mind, I hope to have maybe earned a little more credibility. However, if you still need to check it out for yourself to be truly convinced, I won't be offended.

You can book a service at Crystal Spa by calling . If you've enjoyed your time at the spa and Crystal Mountain please visit Conde Nast Traveler's Readers' Choice Survey and share your experience. Thank you.