| Most Popular Article Of The Week:


Leaf Spa Debuts at Fairmont Chicago, Millennium Park

A brand extension of K’Alma Spas, Leaf Spa introduces its first location


K’Alma Spas recently opened Leaf Spa at the Fairmont Chicago, Millennium Park, providing guests and locals alike a respite from the fast pace of city life. The brand extension focuses on authentic wellness practices inspired by the seasons and the earth’s natural wonders. The idea behind the spa is to bring the mind and body into alignment with nature.

“We are thrilled to welcome Leaf Spa to Fairmont Chicago, Millennium Park,” says general manager Clay Spencer. “Leaf Spa is known for offering holistic treatments that bring wellness to the mind, body, and soul. We’re happy that Fairmont guests and locals alike will be able to delight in relaxation through the nature-inspired menu.”

Located on the hotel’s lower level, the 11,000-square-foot spa features eight treatment rooms, six of which are for massage and two intended for facials. The spa also has one couples’ room with a Kohler waterfall soaking tub for two, which cascades eucalyptus-infused water from the ceiling. Couples can create their own bath amenities, such as herbal bath bombs and herb-infused essential oils to enjoy at home.

Upon arrival, guests enter an enchanting hallway lined with candlelit lanterns that lead them to the captivating Wish Tree, adorned with colorful ribbons signifying hope and manifestations. The tree allows guests to set intentions before beginning their wellness journeys by tying a ribbon to the tree’s base. This experience channels positive energy, manifestation, and transformation, which are cornerstones of Leaf Spa’s values. Guests then enter the House of Knowledge, a gallery of plants, herbs, and leaves from around the world, each offering natural healing benefits. 

Prior to their service, spa-goers can visit the Alchemist Bar, which offers an assortment of healing herbs, essential remedies, and plants they can use to create their own therapeutic topicals, oils, scrubs, and tinctures.

Leaf Spa features an extensive and specially curated seasonal treatment menu to meet the needs of guests. In fall, spa-goers can experience flavors of the season, such as pumpkin and cinnamon in The Fall-Less Facial ($175, 50 minutes; $275, 80 minutes). Winter is a time for comfort, and its slow nature evokes the desire to renew and reset. Spring is about new life and beauty, while summer is about achieving a glow from within.

“Everything starts with a dream, and anything is possible,” says Marizza Contreras, founder and CEO of K’Alma Spa Concepts & Management. “At Leaf Chicago, we will partner with local nonprofit organizations to host ongoing events supporting mental health, aromatherapy balancing, sound healing, and nature baths. The focus of which will touch upon all the senses of sound, smell, touch, and sight in an effort to reconnect with nature and how we can leverage each of the seasons in order to thrive in our lives.”

A collaboration between Marizza Contreras and Craig Carter, K’Alma Spa Concepts and Management benefits from their experience in the spa and wellness space for more than two decades. After working as a spa provider for several years, Contreras participated in the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Businesses Program, which led her to operate more than two dozen spas in South Florida. In 2019, the brand opened a flagship location on Miami Beach under the brand K’Alma. It was inspired by Peruvian crystal color therapy. Carter, also a veteran of the spa and wellness industry, has worked in luxury hotels in Chicago throughout his 20-year career, operating and managing spas at the Ritz-Carlton Chicago, The Blackstone Hotel Chicago, Sage Hospitality Group, and Kimpton Hotels. 

About The Author

Heather, co-founder of Well Defined and the former editor-in-chief of American Spa, is an award-winning journalist and content strategist, skilled in writing, copyediting, and media relations. She is also a freelance writer and has contributed to Elite Traveler, Islands, Kiwi, Luxury Travel Advisor, Organic Spa, Porthole Cruise, Travel Agent,,,, and, in addition to various custom publications. She is frequently called upon to comment on various spa and wellness trends for various media outlets.