A day at the spa is made even better when the said spa is nestled in Ontario’s peaceful wilderness (yet, just over an hour away from the Toronto grind) and immediately puts you in vacation mode. A staple all-seasons resort since 1985, Mono, Ontario’s Hockley Valley Resort offers a refined yet cozy spa experience that comes with the added perks of resort amenities.
As I discovered one September Sunday, a visit to the full-service spa at Hockley Valley resort means you get the entire resort experience – no room key or reservation necessary. Before or after a day of pampering and wining, dining and lounging in spa robes, guests are welcome to use the resort’s facilities, including the indoor and outdoor pools.
The 8,000-square-foot spa houses facials, massages and spa services of all varieties, – from body scrubs and manicures, to makeup application, waxing and Botox injections. Guests can either opt for a la carte services or chose from one of the spa’s six tailored packages.
From the fresh farm-to-table fare, to the spa’s product lines, the common theme at Hockley Valley is local. A trip to Hockley Valley’s spa is made complete with a meal at The Spa Café, nestled in the heart of the spa. Here, guests can enjoy a local goodness-filled lunch, a glass of wine of a smoothie from the comfort of their robes. In the warmer months, this experience can be enjoyed from a terrace that overlooks the outdoor pool. Menu highlights include healthy options like raw salads, bowls and fruit bowls, as well as comforting items like Parmigiano truffle fries and a creamy milk chocolate mousse (it’s all about balance, right?).
Your culinary experience doesn’t have to stop at the spa. At onsite restaurant Babbo, guests are invited to explore the best of the region at the lively lobby lounge and bar. Cocktails, wine, cheese and charcuterie and a small lunch menu await here. As a recipient of the 2010 VQA Restaurant Award of Excellence, their extensive wine list features the best of Canada and the world, with a focus on great Ontario whites from the Niagara and Prince Edward County regions. It’s definitely worth a stop here to refuel before the drive home.
Of course, you can also make a weekend of your spa experience. From skiing and snowshoeing, to golf and hiking, there is no shortage of activities to enjoy throughout the year at Hockley Valley. The sprawling property features an 18-hole golf course, 15 ski and snowboard runs and 104 luxury rooms and suites.
Mario and Nancy Adamo first purchased the Hockley Valley property in 1985, when the pre-existing 28-room hotel and adjacent 10,000-square foot building resembled an unfinished airplane hanger. An ensuing transformation saw the site become the première golfing, skiing and dining destination that exists today. In 2000, the Adamos purchased 77-acre property beside the resort before opening the Adamo Estate Winery in September 2016.
After a long, successful run, the Adamo family sold the resort earlier this year to Sunray Group, a Toronto-based corporation that operates 42 hotels in Ontario, Quebec and Newfoundland. The resort and winery continues to thrive under the brand, as spa-lovers and adventure-seekers continue to flock to the pristine piece of Ontario.