If you want to connect with history while enjoying a little downtime, you can kill two birds with one stone by heading to the Warm Springs Pools at Omni Homestead Resort in Virginia. The historic spa recently underwent a 14-month, $4 million rehabilitation. The pools are fueled by a 99.7-degree natural spring, creating the perfect setting for rest and relaxation.
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Originally built in 1761, the octagonal stone basin held water for bathing--making it the first spa in America--and it used to be an open structure. In the mid-1870s, the property added a roof to the main building known as the Great Bath. At the same time, it added a women's bathhouse. The rehabilitation project is one part of the secretary of the interior's steps to care for historic properties. Rehabilitation allows property owners to acknowledge and maintain the historical aspects of a property, all while allowing them to alter or add to it to meet the needs and uses of the business. It also preserves the historical integrity of the building.
According to the properties website, "the Gentlemen's and Ladies' Bathhouses are open Wednesday - Sunday from 10:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. Reservations are required and are available on the hour priced at $25 per person per 50-minute soak."
Warm Springs Pools splits soaking times into three separate time frames depending on the age range. Families soak from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Ladies' Bathhouse, and the resort requires swimsuits during this time; children up to age 18 are welcome to come with their parent. From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., the Gentlemen's Bathhouse is open for a co-ed soaking time. Ages 16 and older are welcome, and swimsuits are required. Finally, adult soaking is in the afternoon from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., by gender, with swimsuits optional. Of course, adult soaking is for ages 18 and older.
READ MORE: Hot Springs National Park Profile: Arkansas is Home to "The American Spa"
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