Elsinore Hot Springs & Lodge

I explore Southern California a lot in terms of non-human landscape. The coping mechanism for Los Angeles is I need to get into landscapes that feel larger than me and I can see a larger ratio of non human nature—plants, animals, landforms. I was exploring Cleveland National Forest and I was leaning towards the mountains. I’m always curious about water bodies. Lake Elsinore is one of the few freshwater bodies in California that’s not man-made. I came across this town and I could tell that this had a history as a tourist town. I learned that the sulphur springs are here.

The Lodge is like an old motel and they turned the pool into a hot tub. They have a sauna, washroom, and outdoor seating areas. There’s a big pool with mineral water and a hot tub with sulphur water.  Sulphur is supposedly in all our cells so being in it is giving the cell its own environment, bringing it the nutrient that it uses. Sulphur can soften skin, and help with skin ailments. I thought the smell was subtle enough but not overpowering. You can get a room or use the spa for a day.

The town where I grew up in Wisconsin, the translation of the name is Spring City. The whole city is built on healing springs, so I’m fascinated by how towns grow around water. The Lodge was showing some grit to it. It hasn’t been kept up. There’s cracks in walls and ceilings, there’s physical wear and tear. this is how the town feels overall with me. If you look at the reviews it’s all about the woman who manages it and she’s such an amazing hostess. She herself is a whole performance. Everyone talks about her. She’s a very skilled facilitator. She’s a shining light. She was so responsive on the phone and asked me what I wanted, tried to get to know me, was honest about the age of the place. Utterly charming. 

—Spa Thought Partner Sara transcribed during video interview with Carol

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