Therapeutic healing via geothermal springs and wellness treatments have a long and authentic history in Glenwood Springs—a Rocky Mountain town historically called “Colorado’s Spa in the Mountains.” Boasting some of the best hot springs in Colorado, Glenwood Springs is home to the world’s largest hot springs pool!
Glenwood’s Hot Springs
There are many places that offer a soak and a massage, but Glenwood Springs is arguably Colorado’s first and finest wellness destination. The Ute Indians, who considered the springs sacred, originally used the geothermal waters for relaxation and healing. What’s known today as Glenwood Springs was once their summer hunting grounds. The tribe lived, hunted and healed in the valley, enjoying the springs and vapor caves for curative benefits as well as for tribal rituals.
Later Walter Devereux, an engineer, silver mining tycoon and visionary, dreamed of developing the area into a world-class resort centered around the mineral-rich geothermal springs. Under his direction, Devereux brought electric lighting to the area, built the landmark Hotel Colorado which opened in 1893; in 1888 he created convenient visitor access to the Yampah Caves and opened what would become the world-famous Hot Springs Pool. Since then, visitors have been trekking to Glenwood Springs, Colorado: an iconic hot springs destination for relaxation and healing.
Three Healing Options
The world’s largest hot springs pool. Glenwood Hot Springs Resort is a historic Colorado hot springs destination. It is home to the world’s largest hot springs pool. The “big” pool—as it’s aptly described—holds over one million gallons of water and is the length of a football field. The temperature is pleasant year-round at approximately 90-93°F/32-33°C. It’s the perfect aquatic playground for friends and family to splash, swim laps in the designated lap lanes or do tricks off the diving board in the deep end. The smaller therapy pool is a splash-free zone where guests can relax in the warmer water, roughly 104°F/40°C. It features graduated steps along two sides and submerged benches and bubble chairs on the other two. The spacious bathhouse has gender separated locker rooms and family changing rooms. As a full-service resort, there is also a 107-room lodge, an award-winning spa, a poolside restaurant, an athletic club, and a retail boutique.
- Colorado’s newest hot springs. Opened in 2015, Iron Mountain Hot Springs features 16 soaking pools and a family pool with an attached elevated spa. Situated on a terraced hillside overlooking the Colorado River, the soaking pools are named for gemstones and vary in size, shape, and temperature, offering guests a variety of soaking experiences. Ruby is a heart-shaped pool; Lapis has a loose pebble bottom, Topaz offers infinity views of the river, Moonstone features a waterfall. Soaking pool temperatures range from 98°F/36°C to 108°F/42°C and are part of a designated “Quiet Zone.” To maintain a serene atmosphere, children ages 5 – 13 require adult supervision and those younger are not permitted. An on-site restaurant serves a variety of food and drink choices. The over-21 crowd is welcome to enjoy an adult beverage responsibly while soaking —available from the Sopris Café or the Sand Bar. Aside from water bottles, outside food and beverages are not permitted. Men’s and women’s changing rooms, a water bottle filling station and a souvenir shop are all conveniently located in the bathhouse.
- Unique to North America. The Yampah Spa and Vapor Caves is a rare natural phenomenon. Glenwood Springs is one of few places in the world where guests can experience a natural (not man-made) geothermal steam bath. Inside the caverns, hot mineral water flows through channels in the cave floor at a toasty 125°F/52°C. Mineral-rich steam fills the three underground chambers which are dimly, yet adequately, lit. Visitors can relax on marble benches placed in each of the three cave rooms. When it becomes too hot, guests can take a break beneath a cold-water shower. Small tubs are also provided; patrons often like to dip a towel into the water to cool off. Another option is to go upstairs to the serenity room to relax where there are lounge chairs, a fountain, and soothing music. In addition to the vapor cave experience, guests can also enjoy a full range of spa treatments, private mineral baths, and salon services.
- A Colorado wellness destination. Hot springs amenities are just part of the wellness equation that makes Glenwood Springs a top choice for health-seekers. As Colorado’s “Spa in the Mountains,” there’s a thriving array of health-oriented activities in which visitors can partake. Relax with water-based Watsu therapy or give Swedish, Shiatsu, and Thai a try. Join in a yoga or Pilates class offered at studios and clubs throughout town. Visit a genuine apothecary for custom-prepared healing treatments or simply get outside for the positive effects of fresh air and exercise.
With so much to offer guests, it’s no wonder that Glenwood Springs is Colorado’s number one choice for hot springs and wellness.