Spa Mandalay Review

Staying at Mandalay Bay in Vegas for business and planning some spa time? Check out our review of Spa Mandalay.

Spa-goers know that Las Vegas is haven for spas, and Spa Mandalay consistently gets favorable reviews. So as part of my recent stay at Mandalay Bay, I spent an afternoon at Spa Mandalay to review my experience and what you need to know.

Spa Mandalay Wet Area, Courtesy of MGM Resorts
Spa Mandalay – Wet Area, Courtesy of MGM Resorts

Located on the beach level of the hotel, Spa Mandalay is a elegantly designed, 30,000 square-foot facility that features 21 treatment rooms and separate lounges and amenities for men and women. Spa Mandalay opens very early — 6:30 a.m. — for those who wish to schedule a treatment (likely before hitting the trade show floor), and it stays open until 8:30 p.m., seven days a week. But the most popular hours for scheduled treatments are  between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. (weekends are always busier than weekdays). When I’m traveling, I usually make spa time the last thing I do before departing.

It is strongly encouraged that you schedule your appointment(s) early. And because there are many options available, it’s helpful to discuss your needs with the front desk staff — they can help guide you in the right direction. I often like to find out what signature treatments are available, and what’s most popular at a particular spa. Based on my consultation, my schedule:

  • 11:15 a.m.: Check-in
  • 11:30 a.m.: Wet Area Experience
  • 12:30 p.m.: Cocoa Butter Massage and Wrap (plus a 25 minute extension)
  • 2:00 p.m.: Gentleman’s Facial
  • 3:15 p.m.: Departure

Arrive Early, Relax and Enjoy the Wet Areas

I can’t stress enough the importance of arriving early to take advantage of the amenities that a spa has to offer. And many people come to Spa Mandalay just to enjoy those amenities using a Day Pass. After checking in, you’re guided to your lounge where an attendant will assign you a locker and provide sandals. The men’s lounge is a comfortable size with two flat screen TVs and several oversized chairs. It includes a range of beverages and snacks. This is also where you wait for your treatment. The locker room is very spacious and includes private shower facilities, numerous sinks, mirrors, a full range of personal grooming supplies and fresh towels everywhere.

But the wet areas are the main highlight here. It has four whirlpools — two hot, one warm and one cold. I’ll admit that I’m not a fan of cold (I did step in just enough until my knees were covered), so I chose to relax in one of the hot whirlpools and stayed there four about 20 minutes. Then, I had a cold drink before sitting down in the redwood sauna (dry heat). Next, I went to the eucalyptus steam room. I happen to think that this room was great — and moist heat combined with the aroma is very refreshing.

After that, I spent my remaining time in the warm whirlpool, followed by a shower before my treatment.

Massages and Body Treatments

The popular massage for men at Spa Mandalay is the Mandalay Hot Stone, and the ladies tend to enjoy the Platinum Massasge. Because I was seeking a full body massage (head to toe), I followed the advice of the front desk and tried the Cocoa Butter massage, which is more typically a popular treatment for the ladies rather than the guys (but I don’t worry about spa gender preferences and schedule treatments that I haven’t previously experienced). Pure cocoa butter (Innovative Body Science products) is massaged into the skin followed by a warm linen wrap, which allows the conditioning properties of this treatment to retain moisture. My therapist Kat knew that I customized the treatment by extending the scheduled time so that she could have a more in-depth and thorough treatment. I was pleased.

There are a full range of other massage and body treatments, including scalp and foot focus, as well as couples and group event options.

Facials

Spa Mandalay offers six different facial options (guys, we get one choice, but it will be customized to your needs). Marielle was my esthetician. She’s extremely experienced, professional and friendly. Using Eminence products, my treatment included:

  • Cleanse
  • Exfoliation (using a strawberry rhubarb dermafoliant)
  • A pineapple peal
  • Extraction
  • Massage
  • Hydrating skin with bamboo serum
  • Brightening skin moisturizer

After the facial, I was offered water and taken to the men’s lounge where you can sit for as long as you wish. Marielle provided me with a list of suggested follow up recommendations for my skin. A little more than two hours later, I was relaxed and on my flight home.

The Verdict?

Spa Mandalay is a large, tropical themed spa. I have to admit that I am partial to spas that have a full range of amenities while feeling that I have the spa to myself. Given its size, I didn’t expect that feeling before arriving, but the truth is that the large size allows you to feel like you have your own private space (I only saw 5-6 other guys at any given time). I was also impressed with the professionalism and the responsiveness of the staff.

Oh, one interesting and informal fact to share. I asked the front desk to give me the number of men vs. women’s appointments on the day of my visit (a Friday) — 42 men and 47 women. And they told me that, generally speaking, men represent about 50% of the appointments.

To be sure, I can only speak to my men’s experience, but I suspect the ladies will thoroughly enjoy Spa Mandalay, too!

Rob is editor of Business Travel Destinations. He reviews international destinations for meetings and events -- where business travelers go, the hotels where they stay and their lifestyle preferences on the road. Rob was previously the event planning guide for About.com (owned by The New York Times Company) from 2007 - 2011. His articles also appear in business travel publications and travel sites internationally.

1 comment

  1. Sad to say that the first time I ever had a spa treatment was at the Spa Mandalay. I have always thought about it, but thought I would be less of a man. But, I loved it and when I travel I usually check out the hotel to make sure there is a spa!

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