Toronto is big on beauty, health and wellness. Wherever you go throughout the city, chances are that you’re a stone’s throw from a chic hair salon, trendy fitness studio, cool nail salon or buzzy juice bar. The same goes for spas, which are peppered, well, everywhere. Here, we’ve narrowed down our selects of the best Toronto spas to visit now. Unplug, unwind and let these luxurious enclaves transport you to a tranquil setting, despite being in Canada’s most fast-paced metropolis.
Toronto’s popular Ossington Avenue has a new bar, but it’s not what you’re picturing. Hailing from Vancouver (the two B.C. locations are well known among Canadian political figures plus A-listers visiting Hollywood North for film projects), Formula Fig, which opened in Toronto this summer, is a science-forward beauty bar unlike anything you’ve ever seen. Inside the funky all-green space (inspired by a London subway station), a glowing white menu lists various services, including a range of 30-minute technology-driven facials, “stingers” (wrinkle-relaxing neuromodulator injections) and vitamin IVs and shots, all of which are delivered by trusted professionals. Also, the green-swathed oasis sells a curated selection of cool beauty brands, like Vintner’s Daughter, Dr Loretta, Tata Harper and Goop.
After a highly anticipated multi-year renovation, Park Hyatt Toronto has reopened its doors as well as its Stillwater Spa, which is accented in gold with waves of watercolours and light-coloured wood. The 60-minute Ultimate Aromatherapy Experience is a blissful full-body massage and the spa’s most customizable offering. Guests get to choose a handcrafted natural oil blend from U.K.-based Aromatherapy Associates, a leader in the world of aromatherapy, to be used during the treatment as well as the music — they’re welcome to play their own beats via AirPods or headphones, or they can peruse a selection of classical, contemporary and typical spa music. Once you’re lying comfortably on the massage table, get ready to experience unique massage movements and techniques that will leave you feeling totally relaxed and noodle-like.
Victoria Radford’s client list includes the likes of Fergie, John Legend and Molly Parker, and the makeup artist meets aesthetician’s Yorkville beauty studio is often buzzing during the Toronto International Film Festival, with clients booking in for makeup and custom facial services prior to hitting the red carpet. Radford’s curated facials, which incorporate skincare products from her eponymous beauty line (her 24K Gold Hydrogel Face Mask is the ultimate luxe sheet mask), range from 15 minutes to two hours and can include everything from LED light therapy and manual extractions to peels and microneedling. As for makeup services, three levels are offered: pro, principal and senior principal artist. “I wanted to offer different budget options for everyone to be able to feel like a celebrity and feel welcome in the Radford community,” she shares.
Cryo (cold therapy) is at the centre of Vee Mistry’s customized facials, which she performs out of her completely private studio tucked away at the back of a Yorkville-adjacent townhouse. The aesthetician looks at each client’s lifestyle factors and treats their skin accordingly using a mix of perfected techniques — ultrasonic, lymphatic drainage, microcurrent and LED therapy — along with a cocktail of niche skincare brands to help sculpt and lift. “I love cryo because it never leaves the skin looking blotchy, red or irritated,” Mistry tells FASHION. “The water I use is very cold, my cryo sticks [for lymphatic massage] come straight out of the freezer and my sheet masks are kept in the fridge.” And be prepared for the most divine facial massage, which can combine an array of different movements — effleurage, tapotement, kneading and cupping — depending on your needs. “Your face really starts at the nipples and goes all the way to the hairline,” she says. “My massages always work this entire surface area.” Note: This in-demand facialist is often booked up thanks to her impressive roster of high-profile clients who call on her to get her signature glow, but she’s definitely worth the wait.
Miraj Hammam Spa
At the Moroccan-inspired spa in the swanky Shangri-La Hotel, a popular indulgent facial treatment is the Custom Glow Facial, which uses products from leading French skincare brand Biologique Recherche. (You can experience it in 60 or 90 minutes.) No steam or hot towels are used; nor are any extractions performed. And most of the products selected by your aesthetician throughout the treatment will depend on your skin’s needs. Do expect to undergo a thorough cleanse, an exfoliation and the application of a concentrated and targeted booster and multi-masking (which consists of a liquid-based formula and a sheet mask). A facial serum and cream are applied, and then the last step is an SPF. Bonus: A de-puffing lymphatic massage using ice-cold cryo sticks is also part of the signature treatment.
Hammam Spa by Céla
With two locations in the city, Hammam Spa by Céla is another R&R hub influenced by Eastern traditions. We recommend trying one of the spa’s exclusive body treatments, like the Seed to Skin Ritual. To start, you’ll enjoy a detoxifying eucalyptus-infused steam before being brought into a private candlelit room where you’ll lie on a heated marble table. Next, a fragrant, frothy cloud of bubbles and warm water will be poured all over your body (think of it as the most luxurious bubble bath — ever), and then you’ll be gently exfoliated with a natural scrub from the spa’s in-house line, Céla. Once the scrub is fully rinsed, you’ll be treated to a full-body cream application that ends with a head, neck and shoulder massage.
A version of this article first appeared in FASHION’s November issue. Find out more here.