Tahoe Forest Baths offering unique spa experience through cedar enzyme baths

Madison Schultz and Ashleigh Goodwin
Tim Walter and Candice Raynor, owners and founders of Tahoe Forest Baths.
Provided / @tahoeforestbaths

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif.  – While the Lake Tahoe lifestyle encompasses ample time spent outside, it’s vital to take a moment for self care and reflection on a regular basis. Promoting individuals’ overall physical and mental well-being, Tahoe Forest Baths is making strides in the South Lake Tahoe community, offering an unconventional spa experience.

Tahoe Forest Baths opened with a desire to bring cedar enzyme baths to the South Lake Tahoe community. Cedar enzyme baths are a traditional Japanese deep-heating treatment that immerses participants in a mixture of warm, softly fermented cedar, rice bran, and an enzyme solution organically sourced from more than 50 fruits, vegetables, mushrooms, seaweeds and grasses.

“We initially visited a cedar enzyme bath spa on the coast of California, and we were immediately inspired to bring this to South Lake Tahoe,” Tim Walter, co-owner and founder of Tahoe Forest Baths said.

The process of building the cedar enzyme baths.
Provided / Tim Walter

Upon discovering the positive benefits of cedar enzyme baths, Walter and his business partner, Candice Raynor, owner of the South Lake Tahoe business, Purity Aesthetics, began to proactively conduct their own research on bringing the baths to fruition; which ultimately led to bringing out a team directly from Japan.

“We brought out Ohtaka Enzyme Company, who also supply the enzyme concentration solution that we use in the baths,” Tim said. “As soon as the Ohtaka Enzyme Company team got to our space, they immediately went to work and helped us build out the cedar baths to perfection.”

After a several-month process of bringing the cedar baths to materialization, Tahoe Forest Baths opened its doors to the public. The spa boasts two treatment rooms that host two separate, large cedar baths that can fit two people at a time, two individual bathrooms, a changing room, and a sit-down area to relax before and after your cedar bath treatment.

The process of building the cedar enzyme baths.
Provided / Tim Walter

The treatment is a 20-minute experience, where you are fully immersed in the warm, softly fermented cedar mixture. At the 10-minute mark, Tahoe Forest Baths staff checks in and provides a cooling pack to your forehead. After the full 20 minutes, you get out of the bath, dry brush the cedar mix off of your body to promote exfoliation, and rinse off in the shower that’s in the treatment room.

Along with the overall relaxing spa experience that Tahoe Forest Baths is promoting, cedar enzyme baths were initially introduced in Japan close to 80 years ago. Over the past eight decades, there has been a wide variety of health benefits that have been discovered that the cedar enzyme baths offer.

“The cedar enzyme baths help our clientele experience a wide range of benefits from improving circulation and relieving joint and muscle pain to giving their bodies a radiant glow and deeply calming their minds,” Walter said.

The baths are also known to support reduced anxiety and stress, stimulate the body’s limbic system, suppress sympathetic nerves, improved immunity, detoxification, recovery, and skin exfoliation.

Complementing the slough of health benefits, the cedar enzyme baths are also environmentally conscious.

“The heat [for the cedar baths] is generated biologically up to 150 degrees Farenheit via fermenting microorganisms, without the use of electricity or fossil fuels,” Walter said. “Since the thermal conductivity of the cedar is very low, your body can essentially absorb the heat rather than defend itself from it. This means your body warms from the core, which dilates the cardiovascular system, providing oxygen-rich nutrients and optimal blood flow.”

The process of building the cedar enzyme baths.
Provided / Tim Walter

Given that the heat is biologically generated through the process of fermentation, the cedar enzyme baths are naturally purifying, making them naturally sanitary. The baths also maintain a consistently high temperature, not allowing for pathogenic bacteria to form.

“The cedar enzyme baths clean itself and breaks down toxins naturally,” Walter said. “A coating of material that sticks to your body while you are in the bath absorbs perspiration. This coating is brushed off of your body after you finish the bath outside of the tub. The high temperatures, biochemistry of the fermentation process, and the low pH of the wood fibers work together to create a hygienic environment. We change the cedar every two weeks to replenish the aromatics.”

Walter is grateful to bring Tahoe Forest Baths to South Lake Tahoe’s business landscape, and looks forward to having the local community try out cedar enzyme baths and be received positively.

“Cedar enzyme baths truly changed my life, they are a really uplifting and relaxing spa experience that benefit mind, body, and soul,” Walter said. “I look forward to seeing more people come and try one of the only cedar enzyme bath spas in the United States at Tahoe Forest Baths.”

For more information on Tahoe Forest Baths or to schedule an appointment, visit or call 530-208-8997.

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