Last weekend I had tickets to attend a formal charity ball at the Hyatt Regency Bethesda, and I decided to make it a whole self-care getaway, so booked a room at the hotel for the night. And as I was searching other attractions in the area, I found the Bethesda Salt Cave. Google maps said it was literally a one minute walk from the hotel. Score!
To my surprise, they happened to have a current Groupon promotion going on. I chose a 45 minute salt cave session, which is normally $45, but with Groupon, it was only $28. Plus Groupon had an additional 20% off code, so I actually only paid $22.40!
I read both some skeptical news articles and some awesome reviews about the benefits of breathing salt, most of which included clearing up nasal passages and reducing asthma. I didn't really have any of those issues; I just wanted to try something relaxing. And a little positive energy never hurt anyone, right?
I bought the Groupon on a Wednesday, and called the Bethesda Salt Cave the next day to schedule my appointment. After ten minutes on the phone with a pleasant lady named Ann, I was booked for that Sunday at noon.
I received my confirmation email that Saturday, with a reminder to arrive 15 minutes early, wear clean socks, and park my car at the metered parking garage on Montgomery Ave. Since the location was so close to the hotel, I decided to keep my car parked where it was and walk instead.
So what did I think?
I enjoyed every minute of the experience. From the check in process with Ann (the same pleasant lady who booked my appointment), to the energized, cozy feeling of the cave, I was pleasantly surprised at how relaxed I was through the entire session.
I especially liked the zero gravity chairs, though it took me a few tries to figure out how to work it. Once it was locked in position, I felt like I was floating.
When the session starts, the staff turns on the air to move the salt throughout the room. And even though the salt was everywhere, I never got a salty taste in my mouth, like I sometimes do at the beach.
Here are my tips for the best experience:
- The temperature in the room is kept at 68 degrees, so if you tend to be cold, dress warmly.
- Leave any valuables in your car, or ask the helpful staff to lock them up for you behind the counter. There is a coat rack at the entrance, and you can leave your shoes in the waiting area.
- If you love dogs, you will be greeted by Flex, the friendly golden retriever mascot for the spa. He is a great dog, and I had a lot of fun petting him. But if you have pet allergies, be aware that he will be your greeter at the front door.