Having stayed at Cal-a-Vie health Spa five star resort, I can understand why Conde Nast gave it the accolade of it being in the top ten health spas in the world.


With the world on hold due to Covid-19 and all the stresses that it brings, Cal-a-Vie Health Spa  is definitely the place to visit to bring back that joie-de-vivre in a relaxing and peaceful French ‘provencale’ way of life.



It’s all on our minds… how do we enjoy life again while also feeling safe and sound?
We go to Cal-a-Vie Health Spa! I felt very comfortable with the spacious, airy, outdoor exercise areas, exterior dining and wine tasting.


You can be assured, all the state Covid-19 guidelines are strictly adhered to ensure guests feel safe including temperature checks, face masks, social distancing and disinfecting areas with non-toxic cleaners, as soon as they have been used.


Most of the exercise classes are in breezy exercise rooms with all windows open, or, my personal favorite, on their large patio exercise area that is covered in full, cool shade with plenty of fresh mountain air.



You exercise overlooking luscious green mountains, a pretty lily koi pond and trickling waterfalls. Who wants to go back to the smelly sweaty gym? Not me! It is, indeed, a world away from the boredam of one’s living room and masked grocery trips.



I was impressed with the variety of types of classes from Chakra-aligning to line dancing and water aerobics. The two swimming pools, one for lazing and the other for sports swimming, were top notch. I loved the water aerobics with its resistant training, using water-immersed buoyancy belts, noodles and foam dumbbells for a full body work out.  I definitely felt it the next day.



To ease away any lingering stresses, I headed to the blissful spa which had the most array of treatments I think I’ve ever seen. The emphasis at Cal-a-Vie Health Spa is certainly to maximize body and mind wellness. For the light-hearted, they offer the regular Thai, Shiatsu, hot stone massages, scrubs and body wraps.



For those really wanting to revitalize and relign their body’s happiness, you can try chakra-aligning acupuncture, water acupuncture,  cupping, craniosacral therapy, Reiki or Watsu aquatic massage. I wish I had been able to try the craniosacral or chakra-aligning acupuncture myself, as my sister, who lives in Japan, has told me these age-old treatments are extremely therapeutic. But… maybe next time.


(Masks were worn within the Spa. Photo taken prior to Covid-19)


For the evening, an outdoor wine tasting event at the priory was offered. Uniquely, Cal-a-Vie Health Spa have their own vineyards and produce a delightfully light-tasting rose and red wine. We were also very happy to learn the rose had a low sugar content so could enjoy a few glasses!



This was then followed by a healthy three course meal that left you happily satisfied. Interestingly, Cal-a-Vie Health Spa chefs are able to accommodate all guests dietary requirements while offering an excellent, portion controlled for the calorie conscious option for lunch and dinner service; for example, turnip soup , followed by flavorful lamb skewers, grilled peppers, onions, carrots and seasoned rice, followed by a juicy peach and blueberry cobbler.



I must say that Cal-a-Vie Health Spa definitely offered ‘an experience’ for each event or meal, whether it be lunching on a healthy roasted chicken bowl overlooking a babbling brook, flowing under a rustic bridge or wine tasting amongst roaming hillsides of therapeutic, organic lavender.


The relaxed ambiance and experiences make you want to stay in this paradise hideaway forever.


Staying true to provençale style, the current owners imported, not only many French antique carved furniture pieces and beautiful garden stone statues, but also, quite astonishingly, an original L’Orangerie and a beautiful 300 year old French chapel.



They literally deconstructed the buildings stone by stone from France, and reconstructed them on the Cal-a-Vie Health Spa grounds. This genuine and authentic warmth of the rustic, French countryside radiated throughout the whole hotel.


The crème de la crème for me is always when there is something quite out of the norm and extraordinary; and Cal-a-Vie Health Spa provided that with their “out of this world” experience. At the top of the hill on the grounds is an observatory with a high powered telescope where you can actually zoom in to see the moon, Jupiter and the amazing rings around saturn. It was simple astounding.
The crème de la crème for me is always when there is something quite out of the norm and extraordinary; and Cal-a-Vie Health Spa provided that with their “out of this world” experience.



The extremely knowledgeable astronomy guide Tim was so informative, patient and gave an amazing talk on the history of ground-breaking women in astronomy. What a celestial end to a heavenly stay.



This definitely could be the silver lining to Coronavirus. I was completely spoiled. For more information on this little piece of heaven, go to, 29402 Spa Havens Way, Vista, CA 92084 , ph +1-(760) 945-2055.
Heart London Magazine 5 Star Review
Service 5
Food 5
Bedroom 5
Cleanliness/Safety 5
Facilities 5
Suzanne, Heart London Magazine


Suzanne, Heart London Magazine