CR Cuisine and Amenities

After  a weekend of picturesque views,

Cr lenox

healthy culinary delights,

Salmon skewers

being pampered

Thai herbal

and learning (new fitness and health techniques, and also about myself)

Me 3

it’s time to head back to the land of cacti.


Before I get back in the swing of life, I wanted to take a post to talk about all of the amazing food and amenities CR Lenox had to offer while I was there.

Let’s talk about the FOOD:

There were 3 choices for dining: the demo kitchen (I just wrote “demon” kitchen, wow haha), Cafe Tasse/Cafe Jardin (more casual dining- indoors or on the patio overlooking the great lawn) and the main dining room. Each location had similar, but different hours, and made it easy to go in and enjoy your meal, or get your food to-go. 

Demo kitchen:

This is where I enjoyed the fantastic Sunday brunch (gluten-free waffles!! I die.). The best part about the demo kitchen: the chef teaches you how to make the meals and you take the recipes home with you. They have special themes for each demo kitchen meal, and extras that you can enjoy (like a 4-course “Cooking for Company” meal, “Soups,” “Cookies and Crusts,” etc.). With a fully brunched belly, I also took home the recipes for everything I enjoyed, and also went back Monday just to get copies of recipes (even though I ate lunch at Cafe Tasse).

Cafe Tasse:

This was probably my favorite dining spot. I especially loved the view and lower-key atmosphere:


I read my Kindle and drank coffee while waiting for my meals, and also realized that the cartwheel picture I took.. yeah, everyone could see me. EVERYONE. #worthit

Anyway, I enjoyed breakfast and lunch and Cafe Tasse, and enjoyed both equally. 

I loved the fact that at all of the restaurants, I the types of meals I enjoy at home- a comforting luxury since they’re favorites that I didn’t have to make myself.


I also had the chance to try a lot of new things, including the vegan sorbets that I fell in love with (papaya and prickly pear).Sorbet

As I mentioned before, at each restaurant, there were always an abundance of clearly-marked vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free options. The macronutrients and calories for each menu item were also clearly listed, for those who wanted to keep track of their caloric intake while staying there. 

Random tidbit: I had salmon with almost every single meal 😉

Main dining room:

My favorite part of the main dining room, by far was the salad bar. Lettuce varieties, veggies, hummus, crackers, proteins, specialty salads, tempeh (AMAZING), nuts and dressings. Even for the meals I got to-go, I always made a salad to go with it. 


The main dining room was almost a little too formal for me since I was traveling alone. I could see how it would be nice to have a romantic dinner with the Pilot at the end of the day, but preferred to get dining room lunch entrees to-go. I ate dinner there twice- once reading my Kindle and the other time, with a group of ladies.

Food standouts: (linked if I could find the recipe online- if I’m able to get more, I’ll post them for you)

Gluten-free chocolate chip cookies

Balsamic dressing (I want to swim in this)

Gluten-free bread (house-made, incredible)

Teriyaki salmon

-Veggie burger

-Strawberry oat bars

-Gluten-free cornmeal waffles (at work, everyone raves about these gf pancakes)

-Salmon with cranberry sauce



In addition to lectures, fitness classes and outdoor sports (hiking, biking, kayaking), Canyon Ranch is also a full-service spa and salon. I received a spa service allowance with my stay -it’s all-inclusive, so each package includes a spa allowance in addition to complimentary classes, lectures and dining- and decided to go outside the box from my usual deep-tissue massage. The first night, I had a Muscle Melt for Road Warriors, which was perfect after my long day of travel and the race. This Thai massage included the use of herbal pouches, heated and pressed into the muscles to relieve tension, followed by traditional massage techniques using lemongrass oil. It was unlike everything I’ve ever tried. The pouches felt like tennis balls intently bounced into my skin, followed by soothing massage. It was amazing, and the therapist gave me the pouches in a bag when my treatment was over (pic above), to use as aromatherapy in a hot shower, which I did the next day. 

I also had a neck, shoulder, head massage. I love getting my head massaged -some people hate it with all of the oils, but it’s one of my favorite parts- and I tend to store a lot of tension in my shoulders and neck. Both massages were intense and relaxing at the same time.

Spa 2

There’s an incredible amount of treatments to choose from: skin care, body treatments, massage, water massage, salon service, so it’s fun to have so many options for the spa allowance.

Extra info:

One of the things that differentiates CR from traditional spas and fitness resorts is that they have an entire medical staff on hand. Even better, there’s a variety of practitioners in Western and Eastern medical philosophies- the department is called Health and Healing. Whatever medical challenge you’re facing, there’s a practitioner that will be able to assess and meet your needs. I met with one of the energy healers while I was there for a lecture- I’m really excited to talk about it in tomorrow’s post.

-You can also had your stay personalized to meet your health and fitness goals. There’s a variety of testing that you can have done (sleep tests, cardiac tests, fitness and metabolic tests, etc), and by meeting or talking with the Personal Advising department before your stay, they’ll help you plan out which classes to take and what to do while you’re there. Registered Dietitians, Exercise Physiologists and certified personal trainers can help develop a individualized plans to help change your at-home routine. 

-There are so many places to just hang out- lounges (sometimes with live entertainment), billiards, a media room, you can borrow a DVD from the huge DVD library, lounge chairs and hammocks outside, and an exquisite library.


-The environment of CR is serene and tranquil, and I think a lot of it has to do with the “no cell phone” policy. There are designated cell phone areas, and you can text on your phone while you’re out and about (no talking on the phone, though), and it’s truly remarkable to see a group of people not permanently attached to technology. I think it definitely made me reassess my unnecessary dependence on my phone, and just enjoy the present moment.


-I’m pretty easy to please when it comes to hotels. The main things that are important to me are clean rooms, a comfy bed and a powerful shower. I knew I’d be getting so much more from this trip, but I do have to take a moment of silence for the gloriousness of the bed. The bed sucked me in. The sheets, mattress, pillows, everything was heavenly, and I have a pretty awesome bed at home. Saturday night, I decided that I’d just sleep until I woke up, have breakfast and go to 10am yoga. I slept for 11 hours- right through yoga. The bags under my eyes bid adieu, thanks to this:


Hope everyone is having a happy Monday. Hope you loved the cardio/weights blast, too! Thank you so much to those of you who have left feedback so far. 

I’ll see ya in the morning with some chakra talk + what I learned from my trip.



More details about why I stayed at Canyon Ranch Lenox are here. As always, all opinions are my own <3

Something to talk about: What’s your all-time favorite hotel? Two of my faves:  the Bellagio in Vegas and the SLS in LA.

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  1. Kerry @ Totes My Oats on September 24, 2012 at 9:14 pm

    This looks like such an incredible place to be!! The food, the variety of staff… amazing! Safe travels back home!

  2. Averie @ Averie Cooks on September 24, 2012 at 9:20 pm

    Gina it looks like QUITE the place! So happy that you could experience it – from stellar looking tempeh to great spa treatments to just taking in the pretty natural beauty of the area. What a nice getaway!

  3. Kate on September 24, 2012 at 9:21 pm

    Hi Gina! I love your blog (and you! and your adorable family!) but never comment, but had to on this one. So I’m about to get for real with a little TMI. I also stayed at Canyon Ranch Lenox recently; beautiful property, great massages, amazing fitness center. But… let’s talk about the food. I went with my mom and my sister for a long weekend, and literally, none of us could stop farting for 3 days straight. We all eat extremely healthy, lots of natural fiber, lean protein, no processed foods so it wasn’t the ole’ fiber doing it’s thang. It was truly one of the most bizarre, hilarious, uncomfortable experiences ever. Is this…common?! Have you (or any of the guests you know) experienced this?! Is my family just an embarrassingly farty bunch!? Please advise.

    • Fitnessista on September 24, 2012 at 9:29 pm

      hahah! i’m glad you enjoyed it 🙂 gotta say i haven’t experienced that problem, but a lot of the foods i ate at cr (gf breads, salads, salmon, eggs, veggies) are things that i usually eat at home. what did you eat??

  4. Kate on September 24, 2012 at 9:36 pm

    Same situation – except maybe more grains? I can’t think of anything totally out there – and it was all 3 of us! How embarrassing. We did sneak a few bottles of wine in our luggage, so maybe the spa gods struck us down for being cheeky. Oy!

    • Fitnessista on September 24, 2012 at 9:59 pm

      haha i love that you said cheeky 🙂 smart girls for wine-smuggling

  5. Sara on September 24, 2012 at 9:47 pm

    That library really is divine. The building looks important, does it have historical value?

  6. Kaila @healthyhelperblog! on September 24, 2012 at 9:48 pm

    Well this place totally sounds like heaven. I need to plan a trip ASAP.

  7. Alisha @ Alisha's Appetite on September 24, 2012 at 10:10 pm

    That thai massage sounds sooooo incredibly amazing! Seriously beyond jealous of that one. And the food! No words. Glad you enjoyed yourself!

  8. Stellina @ My Yogurt Addiction on September 24, 2012 at 10:16 pm

    Wow, this looks lick so much fun! I really want a massage now!

  9. Jaimie on September 24, 2012 at 10:18 pm

    So, I just looked up Canyon Ranch- Tucson to see how far it is from the Abq where I am. After reading your posts, I need to go!!! Looks like heaven!

    • Fitnessista on September 24, 2012 at 10:24 pm

      let me know if you come to tucson! i’ll tell ya all the must-sees and must-dos 🙂

  10. Sam @ Better With Sprinkles on September 24, 2012 at 11:04 pm

    The spa treatments would definitely sell me on that place…I love a good head massage!

  11. Laura on September 24, 2012 at 11:29 pm

    Looks like you had a lot of fun! So happy for you 🙂

  12. Erin @ Girl Gone Veggie on September 25, 2012 at 1:07 am

    Omg I want to go there! Everything about it sounds incredible!

  13. Danielle@cleanfoodcreativefitness on September 25, 2012 at 7:28 am

    I want to go there now! Sounds truly amazing! I might just have to make a trip of it soon 🙂 Thanks for all the details! Have a safe trip home!

  14. Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat on September 25, 2012 at 7:53 am

    Wow, what an AMAZING experience Gina!! I have always wanted to stay at one of the Canyon Ranch locations and take some time to totally unwind and relax. I’m glad you had such a great time and thanks for sharing about the food and your other experiences there. Safe travels back home!

  15. Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin on September 25, 2012 at 8:12 am

    All 3 places to eat sound great, but that demo kitchen is such a cool idea. It would be awesome to get taught how to make the meals since they all look so good! I’m glad you had such a good weekend. 🙂

  16. RachelG on September 25, 2012 at 8:46 am

    Canyon Ranch reminds me of one of my favorite places in the world…KRIPALU! Kripalu is less exercise focused but the food options, spa, and gorgeous environments are very similar. 🙂

    • Jacquelyn on September 25, 2012 at 10:36 pm

      I agree! You know, since we went together and all. Looks like we have our next destination!

  17. Sarah on September 25, 2012 at 9:20 am

    This whole Canyon Ranch review post thing really upsets me. I do not believe you can give an unbiased review of your employer. I feel it crosses the line a bit. Lately, the feel of this blog has changed; it feels very fake and I am not sure who you are writing for anymore. I find you to have morphed into someone completely unrelatable. The CR thing is wrong; you tout healthy living and yet have ads for Wendys fast food scrolling overhead; you are no longer for me. I realize you are trying to make money, but I think you’ve lost your touch. The Fitnessista no longer feels authentic for anything anymore. Good luck with what you’re trying to accomplish.

    • Fitnessista on September 25, 2012 at 12:27 pm

      honestly, i didn’t have to say anything about working at canyon ranch. i went to the lenox resort, where i don’t work and have never been, and didn’t review the fitness classes, only the other departments that i have nothing to do with. but, i knew that telling my readers was the right thing to do and i wouldn’t be able to stay there without being transparent.
      as far as the fakeness and content thing goes, that’s hurtful to me because i work so hard to provide (free) content on my blog. yes, i’m paid for my work, but it’s never at the cost of my readers. i’d rather spend more time and come up with a real recipe or workout than write “hey, here’s what i had for breakfast, here’s my lunch, here’s my workout, bye”
      i’m really sorry you feel this way. over the past couple of years, i’ve been writing my posts hoping to make everyone happy. i finally realized that it’s not possible. no matter what i say or do, whether it’s talking about a health resort or protein pancakes, there’s always going to be someone who has a problem with it.

      • krystle on September 25, 2012 at 5:50 pm

        And there’s no reason to have to make everyone happy. There are many different blogs out there so everyone can find something they like. Different people have different interests and are looking for different things. I’m really enjoying the format of the blog, so I say keep up the good work!

        • Fitnessista on September 25, 2012 at 5:59 pm

          thank you, krystle <3

        • Sarah on September 25, 2012 at 9:56 pm

          You are fabulous. Just know that there are readers out here who absolutely look forward to Gina-fied meals, big brown eyed baby pics, and totally butt kicking workouts…oh yes, and macaroons. Feel the love!

  18. Kim on September 25, 2012 at 9:47 am

    Everything sounds so wonderful!!

    What kind of pants are you wearing in the picture above? Did you travel in them? I’m always looking for a pair of good travel pants.

    • Fitnessista on September 25, 2012 at 12:23 pm

      they’re old lululemon rock on pants- they were discontinued and they’re one of my favorites. they’re more straight leg than the groove pants and more low rise

  19. Whitney from Beezy Body Fitness on September 25, 2012 at 9:51 am

    Sollllddddd. Take me to there por favor.

    What a fun trip friend. I miss seeing Liv in your posts, ummm you must REALLLLLY miss her. haha


    • Fitnessista on September 25, 2012 at 12:22 pm

      you have no idea. i went into her nursery last night just to watch her (like a creeper) for a while. i was originally going to wake her up, but i couldn’t do it- she looked so peaceful

  20. mary on September 25, 2012 at 10:23 am

    It looks terrific but I’m thinking you probably felt it was half-wasted on you because you probably would’ve much rather been home with your family. I hope not, though!

    • Fitnessista on September 25, 2012 at 12:22 pm

      not at all- i think it was good for me, in a lot of different ways

  21. Rachel on September 25, 2012 at 10:54 am

    That place looks amazing!!!

  22. Lacey @ FamilyFitnessandFoodery on September 25, 2012 at 10:56 am

    Congrats on what looks and sounds like a great weekend of pampering!

  23. kim@hungryhealthygirl on September 25, 2012 at 11:04 am

    Wow….what a trip! I’m sooooo jealous. 😉

  24. Beverly Aragon on September 25, 2012 at 11:41 am

    Ahhhhmazing! I’ve got to start saving for an upcoming vacay to one of CR’s resorts. After reading about your visit to CR Lenox and reviewing other CR locations online, I simply MUST plan a visit for the hubs and me. It looks like the perfect escape!

    • Fitnessista on September 25, 2012 at 12:21 pm

      if you come to tucson, let me know! 🙂

  25. Kaylee on September 25, 2012 at 12:46 pm

    That sounds amazing! I’m glad you had a chance to rest. I love spa weekends away. It’s one of my ‘frivolous’ life goals to try to go to all of the best spas in the world for 1 treatment..somehow 😀

    Especially this one: in Iceland!

    • Fitnessista on September 25, 2012 at 12:48 pm

      omgggggg that looks awesome!

  26. Bonnie on September 25, 2012 at 2:20 pm

    That library looks absolutely gorgeous! Between that and the no cell phone talking, I believe this might be my version of heaven!

  27. Bek @ Crave on September 26, 2012 at 6:35 am

    Oh my take me there!!!! I wonder if we have something like that here in Australia- ahhhh sounds amazing 🙂

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