Heat up from the outside in with one of these warming massage services.
Imagine the sensation of wrapping your hands with a steaming hot, damp towel at the beginning of a Japanese meal. Now multiply that by 60 minutes—plus multiple towels for your neck, back and feet—and you’ll start to get an idea of the Warming Ginger Massage at the Spa at Trump. What distinguishes this massage from a standard rubdown is the intoxicating scent of ginger-infused Balinese oil, which the therapist generously slathers all over your body. (Don’t expect to catch a whiff of the root until you flip onto your back, at which point you’ll enter olfactory heaven.) To complement ginger’s natural effects—improved circulation and digestion and allover warmth—the therapist kneads with long, fluid motions and eases your body into deep, yoga-like stretches. $125 for 60-minutes/$195 for 90-minutes at 401 N Wabash Ave (312-588-8000, trumpchicagohotel.com).—Jessica Herman
It doesn’t matter how chilly Lake Michigan looks from the eighth-floor panoramic windows of Bliss Spa. Once you slide under the sheets of the heated massage table for the Rubber Neck massage, you’ll be so warm and cozy, the winter weather below will be the last thing on your mind. Just as the treatment’s name suggests, this massage is all about relieving tension from your neck (it also pays close attention to shoulders and scalp). The 60-minute service starts with you lying face up on the table, as the therapist gently rubs the front of your shoulders and your scalp using warm oils. After about 20 minutes, you’ll turn onto your stomach and, well, good luck trying to stay awake. The massage therapist applies a soothing, hot mix of paraffin and fango mud on your shoulders and back while continuing to knead away the knots. Bliss says the intention of this treatment is to turn you into “mush from the neck up.” Mission accomplished. $125 for 60 minutes at 644 N Lake Shore Dr (312-255-4496, blissworld.com).—Kevin Aeh
No matter what service you’re signed up for, the folks at Spa Space will melt you at “hello” by taking your coat, seating you at the bamboo-hued spa bar and offering you a giant, steaming mug of tea. To turn the heat up another notch, book the Heaven and Earth Stone Therapy Massage, one of the spa’s most popular winter treatments. Your therapist will place smooth, round stones on your most tense muscles; meanwhile, she’ll slide smaller hot stones from head to toe, using a moisturizing body butter in lieu of massage oil. While folks who dig intense kneading will wish the pressure were deeper, you’ll never experience the clenched-muscle feeling when the therapist finds a sensitive spot that’s common during traditional massages. By the end of the hour, you’ll be so relaxed you won’t be able to tell where your body ends and the massage table begins. $110 for 60 minutes (body butter add-on, $10) at 161 N Canal St (312-466-9585, spaspace.com).—Liz Plosser