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Issue Date: March 2008 Issue

Cloud 9 - Destination Kohler

Kim Schneider
I like having a plan. Kohler, Wis. — one of the nation’s earliest planned communities — has one for all its visitors. The Kohler Co. (yes, the faucet-and-sink people) established the village in 1912, and over time a former employee-housing building has evolved into Destination Kohler, a resort with a spa so luxe, Condé Nast Traveler readers ranked it No. 1 for treatments and services.

The main hotel once housed immigrant employees who couldn’t afford housing. Refurbished in 1981, it’s grand and elegant, with a brick front, Oriental rugs and an Old World charm.

Inside the Carriage House — one of the hotel buildings connected to Kohler Waters Spa — dimly lit hallways paneled in dark wood lead to my luxurious suite, where the bathroom is decked out with gold fixtures and a shower big enough for two (with a mirrored wall!). It could be a spa all by itself.

Over crème brûlée French toast the next morning, I plan my attack on the place. There are four 18-hole golf courses, 10 restaurants and a wilderness preserve to explore, but I’m here to unwind. And for complete relaxation, the best plan is definitely the spa.

My first view of the spa is the indoor pool and waterfall. Water is the heart of this spa — even the glass-enclosed rooftop deck has its own whirlpool and fireplace. And most treatments involve water in some way. I opt for the Aroma so¯k ($95), an exfoliating body scrub and Vichy hydro-massage shower. Afterward, I climb into an oversize bathtub and indulge in some chromatherapy — a form of holistic healing that uses color to evoke different emotions. I stare at the water as it mutates through every shade of the rainbow. And like that rare day when you see a rainbow, I can’t help but smile.

Later, as I sit on my suite’s balcony overlooking the village, I realize the Kohler plan worked. I am relaxed.
Indulge in the H2O Inspiration treatment ($195) — a whole-body pumice exfoliation, a dip in the WaterHaven shower and an invigorating swirl in the RiverBath.
Tour the Kohler Factory (free) to check out the creation of everything from bathroom sinks to cast-iron bathtubs.
501 Highland Drive
Kohler, WI 53044
(920) 457-7777

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