Updated July 2019.
The thermal waters of Hot Springs, AR is what originally attracted visitors to the area and the thermal waters are what keeps bringing people back again and again for a Hot Springs Spa.
The city of Hot Springs was built up around the springs and was originally named “The American Spa.” Today the north end of the city is Hot Springs National Park and is where visitors will find the historic bathhouse row; a collection of 8 bathhouse buildings that were built between 1892-1923.
Today, only two of the bathhouses, Buckstaff and Quapaw, remain as a working Hot Springs spa.
Buckstaff Baths offer a traditional bath experience on a first-come, first-serve basis. An all men’s department is on the first floor and the ladies baths are on the 2nd floor.
All supplies and linen are provided to cover yourself between bathing stations.
Quapaw Bath House is a modern spa with both private and public thermal pools.
I indulged in a private bath and the Mountain Dream package.
Soaking in the thermal waters was so relaxing and I started thinking of ways to transport the Hot Springs thermal waters to my house for nice long soaks at home.
After a nice hot soak, I was pampered with a facial, Sweedish massage and hot stone therapy.
While I was being pampered Alan was having a Sweedish massage as well.
When we met up after our spa treatments Alan told me it was the best massage he ever had. I couldn’t agree more.
The waiting area for spa service is a great place to relax between treatments and has water and snacks available.
Call in advance for reservations for Hot Spring spa services and private baths, the public baths are first come, first serve. Be sure to take your swimsuit and rubber-soled shoes.
The rest of the historic buildings along bathhouse row, except Maurice, are open to the public giving you a peek into the past.
The Maurice Bathhouse, a close rival to the luxurious Fordyce bathhouse, is closed to the public, but it sure does look pretty from the outside.
The Fordyce Bathhouse, which today is the Hot Springs National Park Visitor Center, is a must-see when you visit. The upstairs interior is beautiful and I can see why people loved visiting the spas.
Gorgeous interior, all light and bright with beautiful stained glass and intricately laid tiled floors. Honestly, I wanted to pull up a white wicker chair and stay awhile, but the National Park Ranger informed me that if I crossed the railing alarms would sound. Such a bummer.
The men’s area in the Fordyce bathhouse has a beautiful sculpture in the center of the room with stained glass above. For some reason, the women’s side wasn’t nearly as ornate.
It’s an interesting look at how things were back in the day.
Some entrepreneurial individuals took the idea of a brewery and opened it up in the Superior Bathhouse. Grab a seat in the window and people watch while enjoying a beer.
The Lamar Bathhouse is now home to the National Park store. Step inside and check out the lovely lobby and maybe buy a glass bottle or two to take home some of the famous thermal waters available for free at nearby faucets.
If you are looking for a different kind of trip schedule a treatment at a Hot Spring Spa along bathhouse row in Hot Springs, Arkansas. You’ll soon discover why people come back here year after year.
If you need a local place to stay check out the Austin Hotel, which is an easy stroll to bathhouse row and the historic downtown area.
The Austin has all the amenities you could want including a pool, restaurant, and spa.
We also stopped at Garvan Woodland Gardens and it was AWESOME!
Start planning your visit to Hot Springs today!
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