Meeting your best friend at a wellness resort

Updated: Mar 21

Woodside Canyon Ranch: a perfect getaway for the whole family, a solo traveler, or with a corporate group


I recently had a chance to sit down and talk to Melanie Adams from Canyon Ranch Woodside. Here are some excerpts from the great information that Melanie shared. To listen to the podcast with our entire conversation, click here. To watch the video, click here.


The secret ingredient with Canyon Ranch is that we are giving you the tools, teaching you the new habits and how to make them an actual way of life, to be able to truly feel well long after you check out. We are very blessed here at Canyon Ranch to have a repeat rate of over 70% for our guests that return to us year after year.


I love what I've seen post-pandemic, with generations of family coming back. With the pandemic and everybody focusing so much more on wellbeing and wellness in general, I’m seeing little reunions within families where they're coming back and all meeting each other and doing this first healthy vacation, truly focusing on themselves and giving themselves a healthy start to really be mindful about their travel moving forward.


The five pillars are our secret sauce here at Canyon Ranch. The pillars are health and performance, mind and spirit, fitness and movement, nutrition and food, and skin care and beauty from the inside out.




Our Woodside property is known as The Retreat, and we have more of a nature focus. We get guests outside a little bit more and have fewer of the presentations and more of the activities, and that's worked really well here in the Bay area.




How do guests decide what type of activities they want to do here? We truly are a summer camp type experience. So every hour of the day there are usually two or three different activities, demonstrations, or presentations that our guests get to choose from. Sometimes it can be a little overwhelming. So we have wellness guides that act like a pre-arrival concierge. They reach out to our guests in advance and ask them those important questions. Why do you want to come to Canyon Ranch? Is there something you do want to work on? The wellness guide helps create their schedule for them with breaks in between to make sure they're experiencing all five wellness pillars every day. Learning new and different things, but also focusing on that rest and relaxation piece too.



Woodside is on 16 acres of Redwood retreat. We’ve built these lovely, very luxurious and modern treehouses that surround the main building. The 24 tree houses plus 14 rooms in our main retreat offer this long weekend-type wellness immersion. We're only open Thursdays through Mondays here in Woodside.



We close midweek, which is when we welcome our private groups, usually from the corporate side, to do a wellness immersive corporate retreat. So all the fun activities that we do all weekend long, we can do for groups as well and let them do their own curated content and then add in wellness. But the main thing is they have to want to add wellness in, we're not just a retreat venue. This is a very important thing with the Canyon Ranch brand in general: we want to help inspire, to reset and restart creativity. That's what we've been doing for corporate groups, midweek. And it's worked really well.


Woodside's the place where you meet your best friend at summer camp. There are so many solo travelers, and by the second morning everyone's having breakfast together and all of the individual tables have merged into these collaborations, and have become friends for life.



We do still have so many of the different spa elements here. But things are a little bit different. For example, with this beautiful, huge redwood forest surrounding us, we have a forest fitness course. We do forest bathing activities, lots of different photography hikes, and mindfulness mountain biking with the spa area. We have a healer and a bodywork specialist. This retreat doesn't tend to focus as much on pure spa-goers, but more on those that want to get outside and do the fun activities.


It was a joy to talk to Melanie and learn more details about Canyon Ranch Woodside! She even led a guided meditation at the end of our conversation. Tune in to enjoy it with me.


Photos courtesy of Canyon Ranch