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Spa Party: Invitation and Plans

Spa_Party_InvitationEvery woman deserves to be pampered occasionally, and that's what throwing a spa party is all about: you and your friends relaxing together, enjoying good company, juicy gossip, and close attention to your nails, skin, and hair. There's a variety of ways you can do it, and it makes for a party experience that's light years beyond the standard Jell-O shots and Tupperware.

First off, you'll need to plan your little soiree carefully, and the first question that should come up is, "Where?" Many day spas will be happy to host your spa party, as long as you can guarantee them a certain minimum number of guests, and as long as you book the treatments in advance. They'll need to know who wants pedicures, who needs a mud bath, and who's going to request a massage, if only so they can know how many spa specialists they'll need on hand. This type of spa party can be the most difficult to arrange, since you'll probably have to send out the invitations, complete with RSVP requests detailing preferred spa treatments, well before you firm up your plans with the day spa itself. It'll also be the most expensive, since in most cases you'll have to cover treatments for everyone. If everyone pays their own way, it's not really a party, is it?

A more realistic option for those of us who aren't independently wealthy is to have your spa party at home. Now, this option offers several sub-options for you to enjoy, and is especially applicable to the larger spa party. You can either hire individual spa professionals for on-the-spot treatments (great for those impulsive decisions by your guests), or you can hire a mobile spa to come to you. Mobile spa services are available in many areas -- especially on the East Coast -- and offer all the spa essentials, from aromatherapy candles to spa linens. If you like, you can have a massage in your own living room, or a body scrub in your own bathroom. Now how's that for luxury? It may be difficult to find a mobile spa, so ask around, or look in the Yellow Pages under "Party Planners." If you decide to make use of a mobile spa or spa professionals, be sure to book them at least three weeks in advance -- and at least a few days before the party, confirm with them to make sure they're coming.

Your most basic and least expensive style of spa party is the one where you and your guests do everything yourselves. Of course, you'll provide everything from the candles, music, and scents to homemade or commercial spa kits, towels (your best ones), and a schedule of activities. This is much more like the traditional party atmosphere than the other spa party types -- a sort of grown-up slumber party, if you will. You and your girlfriends can trade treatments; you could do a facial for one, while she does your pedicure later (Pillow fights are optional). Admittedly, this isn't quite as luxurious as having the professionals do everything for you, but you'll still have a great time, and you're more likely to come out of it with your bank account in the black.

Once you've got the basic outline of your party planned, it's time to send out your spa party invitations. Considering that this is a rare event, an extra-special sort of party unlikely to be repeated soon, your invitations should be special too. The question is, how extravagant do you want 'em? You could use specially-printed engraved invitations, handwritten calligraphy, or just about anything that strikes your fancy; whatever it is, let your creativity flow. A plain e-mail just isn't going to cut it. Some companies make ready-printed spa invitations, which you can use if you must, but that lacks somewhat in personality. With the advent of computer greeting card programs, you've got all kinds of avenues available for your invitation, vis-a-vis design, content, layout, and the like. The paper should also be special, and some gurus even suggest adding something eye-catching, like sprigs of grass and raffia. If that's too extreme for you, try a nice vellum or parchment-style paper with fancy lettering.

Whatever you choose, there are certain things every spa party invitation needs. An RSVP should be required, especially if the party is taking place at a day spa; if that's the case, you should also include a list allowing the guest to check off which treatments she'd like to receive, so you can set all that up in advance. For a day spa party, you should definitely send the invitations about at least a month in advance, so you can schedule everything with the space 2-3 weeks ahead of time. The same thing is true if you're scheduling a mobile spa or spa professionals to come by. A lengthy lead-time is less necessary for the purely homespun spa party, but these invitations should go out at least two weeks in advance, so you have plenty of time to prepare.
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