In need of a little pampering? A grown-up recharge that allows you to cast off the stresses of everyday life, and slip into something calmer? Invest in your health and head to one of the slickest spas in Europe for a winter wellness escape. Disconnected from the constant hum of the world outside, allow nature, and experienced staff, to ease away your tensions, and leave you feeling rested, restored and utterly revitalised. We’ve rounded up a selection of the finest hotel retreats to check into this winter, in locations so dreamy, you’ll forget what you were stressed about to begin with. Live for the moments you can’t put into words.
Set at an altitude of 960 metres above sea level, Fai della Paganella is a winter sports paradise. With 50 km of powdery slopes and white-draped landscapes; it’s also home to the magnificent Solea Boutique & Spa Hotel. The art of relaxation is something this elegant hotel takes very seriously; they even have a private suite with its own spa. But regardless of which room you book, you’re in good hands with no less than 1500 m2 dedicated to wellness. From their highly-acclaimed Sauna World that encompasses a temperature to suit everyone, to the icy chills of the frigidarium with crushed ice peeling. Gaze out to the magnificent backdrop of the Dolomites from the azure waters of the pool, or let your stresses float away in one of the many relaxation areas equipped with suspended or floating beds. There’s even a specific “Relax Garden” and relaxation pools – the only thing you need to worry about is where to rest first. Try out the ‘Inner balance energy ritual’ which stimulates the seven energy centres, or chakras as they’re otherwise known, or for something a bit different have a shot at the Dorsalis massage. Fusing ancient techniques with the vibration of Tibetan bells, and cupping, this highly stimulating treatment is said to relieve any tension in your back whilst improving spinal suppleness and correcting posture.
Set within the enchanted forests of South Tyrol, lies the female-strong hotel with a devotion to wellness. Set 1100 metres above sea-level with awe-inspiring views over the UNESCO World Heritage Dolomites, this eco-paradise lives by the mission ‘to provide the impetus for a sustainable lifestyle in order to preserve the impressive natural power of our planet in its purity.’ Committed to sustainability and environmental protection, your wellness is the top priority of Eco Hotel Saltus. The Forest Spa is firmly founded in Mother Nature, and 99% chemical-free. Float from the saunas, to the relaxation areas or across to the yoga room. a dip in the calming waters of the 17-metre long rooftop infinity pool or indulge in any one of the holistic treatments on offer. From the Finnish sauna set within a glass cube, to the steam bath with a forest view; breathe in the aroma of fresh moss, as you allow the spa, which is nestled within a cocoon of fragrant firs, to work its magic. Biophilia, otherwise known as ‘forest bathing’ is the positive effect of the forest and nature on our mind and body, and has now been scientifically proven to boost immunity by 40%, after just three hours in the forest. We feel better already.
Set right within the heart of the Swiss Alps, in one of the world’s most famous ski resorts, is HUUS Gstaad. With a name that literally means “home”, this alpine retreat is a haven of warmth, surrounded by a spectacular winter wonderland. Set at an altitude of 1000-3000 metres above sea level, this chalet-style property sits on the doorstep of pristine slopes and the most excellent runs, and boasts over 2000 m2 dedicated to wellbeing, spread across three floors. In fact, its all-inclusive services are unmatched in Switzerland. The unique Finnish sauna enjoys views of magnificent gardens below. There’s an aromatic sauna, ice fountain, herbal steam bath, as well as a 135 m2 panoramic swimming pool, where you can marvel at the fairytale landscape as you do laps, or simply relax. Guests can also access the spa lounge whilst a dedicated kid’s spa is on-site to cater for strung-out mini-me’s. There’s even a HUUS-owned ski school, teen hideaway and a plethora of activities to entertain guests of any age. With every inch of this exceptional hotel designed to allow guests to relax in harmony with Mother Nature, stress-free can be a state of mind for all of the family. Now, exhale.
An oasis of calm within the beautiful South Tyrol, with the majestic Dolomites serving as your breathtaking backdrop, this high altitude escape is the perfect spot to immerse yourself in Mother Nature herself. Sensoria Dolomites’ heavenly spa is a haven of tranquillity offering a wide array of tailored massages, facials and exclusive experiences all set within a soul-soothing ambiance. From taking a dip in the bath house pool, to indulging in beautifying treatments, or flexing your muscles in the high-tech gym; everything you could possibly need for your well-being, is here at your fingertips. Located in the picture-perfect village of Seis am Schlern, with spectacular views over the Sciliar / Schlern mountains, the world of Sensoria Dolomites brings the healing powers of nature and luxury together, with bliss-inducing results.
The outstanding ski-in-ski-out hotel, Berghotel Biberkopf is set within Austria’s Warth-Schröcken region, right in the heart of the Arlberg Mountains, and Austria’s largest ski region. This brand new hotel is not only in prime position to enjoy the best in winter sports, but also boasts a truly heavenly wellness area, for those that are looking to wind down. Come in from the slopes, and let the experts soothe your body and calm your mind. Expect spacious saunas and beautifully decorated relaxation rooms, complete with wooden recliners and calming neutral tones. The pool area is truly something to behold, whether you’re taking a gentle swim or relaxing in one of the oversized beds alongside. And for those in the mood for more activity, the upscale modern fitness area is equipped with everything you need to keep in tip top shape. With an average of 11 metres of snow in the Warth-Schröcken area, this is the perfect hideaway for winter sports enthusiasts or those simply wanting to unwind in a stunning frozen wonderland.
Tucked away in the pristine South Tyrolean Sarentino Valley, and just 15 minutes from the historical town of Bolzano, Hotel & Restaurant Bad Schörgau is far far away from the beaten track. This boutique spa hotel combines the best traditional methods with modern elements, and enjoys a long tradition as a ‘farmer’s bath.’ With a name that says it all – ‘bad’ literally means bath – this historical property dates back to 1533, documented as rural baths with tubs, mineral springs and a public house. It even boasts its own fresh water spring, high in iron and sulphur. The Wenter family took over this local treasure in 1986, and today it’s not only the ideal winter escape but also a unique spa hotel. Try out a range of treatments and experiences to leave you feeling shiny and new. From the “Nuvola” bath tub floatation system to the Iyashi Dôme – a Japanese detox module, where you can sweat as much as if you’d run 20 km. They also offer the Silhouette-Gourmet method – a unique combination of spa treatments, carried out alongside adapted cuisine and the best quality sleep, for total body purification. Or try out their original Bad Schorgau mountain pine bath which is said to stimulate blood circulation, the immune system and clarify the mind. We feel clearer already.
Set within the iconic Ski Arlberg, surrounded by peaks such as the Rüfikopf, the Omeshorn and the Kriegerhorn, Hotel & Chalet Aurelio was awarded “Austria’s Leading Boutique Hotel 2022.” This impressive ski-in-ski-out hotel with ‘flash-roasted’ pine walls, is also home to a wellness area of more than 1000 m2. The incredible Aurelio Spa comes complete with a thermal suite consisting of saunas, herbal bath, plunge pool and relaxation area; along with an indoor pool, Jacuzzi and state-of-the-art gym. Whether you’re coming in from the slopes, or heading straight to relaxation, trained therapists are on hand to provide every kind of massage imaginable, alongside deeply pampering facial and body treatments. For those that enjoy a little cold therapy, retreat to the snow atrium for an energising boost. Located right in the middle of the Schlegelkopfpiste there’s an impressive 303 km of skiing to experience, as Lech and the Arlberg region are not only one of the largest ski resorts in the world, but widely considered to be one of the best in Europe too.
If you’re in search of 5-star wellness, the spa town of Merano is widely considered to be the pearl of South Tyrol. And the family-run Giardino Marling, is truly a touch of class in this Mediterranean destination. Offering guests wellness experiences only of the highest level, their wellness ‘temple’ is 1700 m2 of pure unadulterated bliss. With four saunas, three relaxation rooms, an indoor pool, whirlpool, and heated outdoor and sky pools too, the spa here is the pinnacle of luxury stress-management. Take a dip in the heated saltwater natural stone pool in the garden or do a few laps with your partner in the romantic indoor pool. Immerse yourself where the heavens meet the earth at their heated stainless steel Sky Pool, located on the roof terrace, offering breathtaking views over South Tyrol. Even for those choosing to stay inside, the enormous windows flood the area with natural light, bringing the magnificent outdoors in. Take your pick from rejuvenating soaks and sports massage to body treatments and romantic couples treatments, all of which are accompanied by a glass of sparkling Prosecco and fresh fruit. Come for the spa, stay for everything else.
For those in search of the perfect alpine hotel, but far from the tourist trail, Hotel Platz has your name on it. Providing the finest in hospitality for over 60 years, this enchanting hotel is nestled amongst snow-covered woods and meadows, just 5 km from the charming village of Ortisei. Choose from a wide array of outdoor activities in this stunning region of Italy, or slip into their wellness zone. A haven of wood panelling and quietude, there’s a Finnish sauna, infrared cabin, bio sauna, Jacuzzi and all variations of massage you could ask for. The calming relaxation room, kitted out with super comfy double loungers and soft warm blankets, offers some of the best views over South Tyrol. Minimally decorated using natural tones and materials, every room in this charming hotel comes with its own private garden or balcony. Whatever you choose to do, or where, the magic of the Dolomites is all around you.
The UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Dolomites is home to the 4-star, Schloss Hotel Korb; a fairytale castle in the municipality of Appiano, bordered by fragrant roses. This charming little home away from home is also the perfect place to bid goodbye to your stresses and strains. The small wellness area has everything you need to melt away your cares; from oil, classic, rose and foot massages, to luxuriant cosmetic treatments for the face and body. The award-winning pond-like bio infinity pool is free from chemicals too, as the biofilm that settles in the pool purifies the water. There’s also a solar-heated outdoor pool, whirlpool and charming barrel sauna to heat you up on the bitterest of days. But even if you’re not brave enough to step outside, the indoor pool is kept heated to a comfortable 30 degrees. Guests can also enjoy the Finnish sauna, steam bath, and infrared cabin whilst taking in views of beautiful Bolzano – rich in historical and cultural treasures - and their famous ice-man, and oldest known human mummy, Ötzi, better known as “Frozen Fritz.”
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