Waterstone Spa is under new ownership this year, but the Ashland getaway remains true to its name.
"We've always wanted to celebrate the waters," says Becky Neuman, co-owner of Ashland Springs Hotel, which drew the nearby spa under its umbrella in January.
Acquiring the spa returns the 85-year-old hotel to its origins as a destination for "taking the waters." When Lithia Springs Hotel opened on the downtown Ashland site in 1925, guests could choose between four different mineral waters, including the town's famed lithia water — thought to possess healing properties — to fill their baths.
That luxury drained away as the hotel changed hands through the last century. But hands-on spa treatments can promote healing as Ashland Springs promotes itself as a destination for health and well-being.
"It's more than just being pampered," Neuman says, adding that she believes spa visits really do improve health.
"It's an oasis."
A soothing color palette of peach, melon and robin's-egg blue reflect redecorating and remodeling efforts to marry the hotel's identity with the spa's. Visitors find the same towels, wicker furniture and framed, floral-specimen prints that adorn the hotel, just across First Street. A freestanding pedestal tub in the spa's private soaking room evokes early-20th-century elegance.