Spas have added a pampering dimension to several properties on both the French and Dutch sides of the island. Treatments and products vary depending on the establishment, but generally include several different massage modalities, body scrubs, facials, and mani-pedis; all the spas offer men's treatments, too. Be sure to phone to book in advance, however, as walk-ins are hardly ever accommodated. There are massage cabanas on some beaches, especially on the French side, and most of the beach clubs in Baie Orientale will have a blackboard where you can sign up or will give you the phone number for a massage therapist. Sometimes these beachside massages can be arranged on the spur of the moment. Hotels that don't have spas can usually arrange in-room treatments.

Dutch Side

Christian Dior Spa. With its oceanfront setting, this spa is undeniably dramatic, and the treatments are certainly creative. The Intense Youthfulness Treatment combines a 30-minute back massage with a facial cleansing therapy and shiatsu head massage. A two-hour Harmonizing Body Massage combines several techniques such as reflexology and shiatsu. Guests have all-day use of the pool, steam room, and sauna. A full line of Dior products is available for purchase. The spa is open weekdays 9 to 6 and Saturday 9 to 4. The Cliff at Cupecoy Beach, Rhine Rd., Cupecoy, n/a St. Maarten. 721/546–6620;

Good Life Spa. This spa offers aloe vera treatments (to combat sunburn), a wide range of scrubs and wraps, and packages with multiple services. There's also a large hydrotherapy pool with waterfalls and jets, and a fitness center. It's open weekdays from 9 to 8, Saturday and Sunday from 10 to 6. Sonesta Maho Beach Resort & Casino, 1 Rhine Rd., Maho Reef, n/a St. Maarten. 721/545–2540; 721/545–2356;

Hibiscus Spa. This attractive facility offers the usual menu of facials, body treatments, and massages featuring Decleor products. The Hibiscus Expert Facial is formulated to benefit your skin type. It's open daily from 8 to 7. Westin St. Maarten Dawn Beach Resort & Spa, 144 Oyster Pond Rd., Oyster Pond, n/a St. Maarten. 599/543–6700;

French Side

La Samanna Spa. You don't have to be a guest at the hotel to enjoy a treatment or a day package at this heavenly retreat, considered one of the best spas on the island. In a lovely tropical garden setting, immaculate treatment rooms feature walled gardens with private outdoor showers. There are dozens of therapies for body, face, hair, and spirit on the spa menu; any can be customized to your desires or sensitivities. Open daily 10–7. Belmond La Samanna, Baie Longue, n/a St. Martin, 97150. 0590/87–65–69;

Renova Spa. Renova Spa at the Riu hotel in Anse Marcel offers a full menu of more than 40 services, including advanced skin-care therapies, integrative massages, exfoliation and body treatments, facials, and nail care performed by skilled Parisian-trained Carita therapists. Hotel Riu Palace St. Martin, Anse Marcel, n/a St. Martin, 97150. 590/77–44–50;

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