Finding the Way Back to Ohtli at the CasaMagna Marriott

I wanted to return. I can tell you the house made tequila was the main reason, but to be honest, my return trip was for another experience – the spa.  Ohtli, the name of the spa, means “the path” in the native Nahuatl language.  Apparently I desired a return to the path.

I am no stranger to a massage, but I don’t often design trips or select hotels because of a spa. This was my first, but may not my last. The prior year I visited the CasaMagna Marriott Resort in Puerto Vallarta and walked through the Ohtli Spa on a tour  right before a tequila tasting with champagne style glasses. And something about the spa stayed with me.  Then I received a reminder.

homemade sangirta made to order... deliciousWhen grabbing my Marriott Rewards card before a trip, I noticed the image on the card. Could it be? Yes it was. The heart of the Ohtli Spa, the pool, was on my card. Of all the Marriott Resorts in the world, the spa at the CasaMagna in Puerto Vallarta was the image on my card.

I made reservations.

My Ohtli Spa Treatment

I arranged for three nights in February and on my third morning, I decided to set aside time for a spa treatment; I selected the hot stone massage.  The treatment began with an optional prayer, a Huichol Indian prayer I accepted, and then 90 minutes of bliss as hot stones worked out my tensions and stress.

My masseuse wanted to talk, but I remained fairly silent. I always become very present and focused during a massage to give my mind a break as my body gets a workout. Plus this time I wanted to focus on the meaning of “the path.”

A Focus on “The Path”

Outside the treatment room, rather refreshed I found myself staring directly at the pool.  I stopped at the edge for a brief minute to soak in the moment.  Rejuvenating.  I didn’t dive in physically, but certainly did dive in mentally, if not even spiritually. Pure intoxication.

a perfect pool

At Ohtli once a visitor books a treatment they have access to the facility for the entire day. And I took advantage. Two more hours passed in the spa at the  jacuzzi, the Swedish shower, the relaxation room, and the sauna. I also focused on the “path.”

It became apparent of how my “path” involved and continues to involve Mexico. There was something special about the spa and certainly something very special about Puerto Vallarta and Mexico. I learned so much already with so many more adventures ahead, all I could say was a simple “thank you” as I left. Yes, thank you very much.

the "way" into the spa

A few  weeks later at the New York times Travel Show  I stopped by “Mexico” and discussed my recent travels to Puerto Vallarta. In one of the many conversations, the CasaMagna Marriott in Puerto Vallarta was mentioned, a colleague responded with, “wonderful spa.”


Stay adventurous, Craig

I’d like to thank the Casa Magna Marriott for hosting me while in Puerto Vallarta, for providing the image of the pool, and reminding me to enjoy my path. Also, this post is part of the 2012 Mexican March Madness series.

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  • TravelDesigned

    ahhh… the spa! Time well spent.

  • Mary J. McCoy-Dressel

    The pictures alone are intoxicating. To be there and see it in person must have been Heavenly. How lucky for you, Craig.

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  • Craig Zabransky

    @Steph, yes, I agree… I always leave the spa saying… I need to do that more often.
    @Mary, thanks. Yes, very lucky. It seems the “path” led me there. No complaints at all.

    stay adventurous, Craig