Healthy Holidays - Bali Guide - Part II

In this Part II of our healthy guide to Bali we're focusing on Seminyak. A bit more mainstream than it's spiritual sister Ubud, Seminyak is Bali's high-end dining and boutique shopping capital. Despite this, there are still plenty of healthy options, we've rounded up our favourites for you below.


CAFE ZUCCHINI

 

EARTH CAFE

 

ZULA

with a menu similar to it's sister outlet Earth Cafe, Zula offers the same level of () for those staying slightly outside the main Jalan Oberoi stretch. 

THE LITTLE GREEN CAFE

DIVINE EARTH

 

SEA CIRCUS

The real draw at quirky sea circus is the Breakfasts. The menu offers a host of healthy juices and smoothies alongside Bali's only Acai bowl (so good we came back twice) and other scrumptious options like smashed Avo on toast and ( ).

 

REVOLVER

Semiyak's prize for the hippest (and tastiest) coffee goes to Revolver, which also serves up a mean range of fresh veggie juices and gluten free treats alongside their (). 

BODYWORKS

For a bit of pampering head to Semiyak's leading spa Bodyworks. While it is a little pricier than some of the other local options it's totally worth it! We went for the signature () treatment which uses all natural ingredients. First you're treated to a lovely full body massage, followed by a traditional Balinese scrub made from (), a full body yoghurt mask all topped off with a soak in a gorgeous flower filled bath.

 

Healthy Holidays - Bali Guide - Part I

In this latest instalment in our 'Healthy Travel Guides' we are exploring the tropical Indonesian haven of Bali. Unfortunately our trip was short so we were only able to explore a fraction of what Bali has to offer so this guide doesn't purport to be comprehensive. Our trip was limited to two of the most popular areas - Ubud (Part I) and Seminyak (Part II), but we'd love to hear your tips for healthy hotspots in other areas of the island! The health scene in Bali is booming, so if you're looking for the perfect cocktail of culture, sunshine and health, Bali is the perfect destination! You can check out our Bali adventures on Instagram @theholist

Image: Keulefm at Pixabay.com

Image: Keulefm at Pixabay.com


PART I - UBUD

Mountainous Ubud in central Bali was put on the map for many by Elizabeth Gilbert's Eat Pray Love. Many diehard fans will argue that the phenomenon of that book and movie has turned Ubud into a cliche for people on a journey to "find themselves". While we have no doubt that Ubud has changed a lot and has become very touristy, it is still Bali's spiritual and health capital and a dream travel destination for anyone interested in a healthy lifestyle. Surrounded by jaw-dropping lush green rice paddies,with a super laid back vibe and healthy cafes on every corner, what's not to love! While the main area of Ubud is pretty small and everything listed below is within walking distance, in order to really appreciate the beauty of the area we'd recommend staying slightly outside the hustle and bustle of the centre.  Check out our round-up of our favourite hotspots from Ubud below. If you're planning a trip we'd recommend checking out Bali Spirit for details of Bali's holistic side including events, retreats and insider tips. 

Image: Mariamichelle at Pixabay.com

Image: Mariamichelle at Pixabay.com

SOMA

An institution of the Ubud scene, hidden away on a side street off the busy thoroughfare, Soma is an oasis of calm. It serves the most beautiful array of juices and fresh wholesome dishes and Ayuvedic, raw, macrobiotic and vegan and free-from options abound. They also do a delicious line of raw chocolate truffles, cakes and other guilt-free sweet goodies as well as serving F.R.E.A.K Coffee (see below). Upstairs is a newly opened "General Store" selling organic produce, homemade Kombucha and nut mylks, body care, jewellery and homewares.

CLEAR CAFE

With a self-proclaimed philosophy of "eat the food you wish to be", this wonderful cafe on central Jalan Hanoman serves up a range of carefully crafted tonics, elixirs, juices, smoothies. The food menu offers a range of light western and local dishes including healthy soups, salads and sandwiches, perfect for a light lunch to refuel after a jam-packed morning.

KAFE

Kafe, open since 2005 is a Ubud healthy hub serving up fresh, wholesome cafe fare including salads, sandwiches as well as more hearty dishes and raw options. They also have a mean treats cabinet full of delicious cakes, cookies and other sweet treats. 

THE GARDEN KAFE

Set in a shady garden in the grounds of the Yoga Barn, The Garden Kafe menu is pretty similar to that of it's sister establishment Kafe (above) with the addition of a specially designed Ayuverdic menu. This was one of our favourite places to cool down with a coconut and a delicious raw brownie after a gruelling yoga class. 

BALI BUDA

One of Bali's largest healthy chains, Bali Buda's Ubud branch opened way back in 1994 and offers a great little health and grocery store (perfect for stocking up on healthy travel snacks) as well as a delicious cafe around the corner. The menu offers a host of the usual suspects, delicious salads, soups, sandwiches (with wheat-free options) and a host of delicious, nourishing juices and superfood smoothies.

JUICE JA

Juice Ja is the perfect place to stop off for a quick cold-pressed juice and homemade bliss ball or granola bar while you browse their small grocery store. The owners also run Ubud's organic farmers market on Wednesdays and Saturdays which gives a vote of confidence to the quality of their ingredients.

ALCHEMY

A bit of a trek out of town but absolutely worth it! Alchemy offers a vegan cafe, raw chocolaterie and juice bar as well as a small health store and a range of natural therapies including colonics at their holistic clinic upstairs. The real draw at Alchemy however, is their mind blowing salad bar which offers an incredible array of freshly prepared, innovative salads. If they could just open up a London branch our lives would be complete!

SARI ORGANIK

Just up the road from Alchemy, Sari Organik offers a heathly, organic take on some of Bali's best local dishes. 

LIVING FOOD LAB

Tucked away in a secret garden, stone's throw from Ubud's Monkey Forest, situated in a tucked away secret garden is the Living Food Lab, a cafe offering locally sourced organic raw food which is vegan and gluten free. They offer a range of hand crafted salads, a granola station, juice and elixir bar as well as scrummy sweet treats! They also offer half-day raw cooking classes which cover raw nutrition, hands on living food preparation, a 5-course gourmet raw meal.

LOCAVORE

For a higher end dining option check out highly acclaimed Locavore. Their ingredient driven menu reflects the chemical-free seasonal produce and ethically fed meat that they pride themselves on, an incredible 95% of which is sourced locally. Reservations are essential.

F.R.E.A.K. COFFEE

For those of you who can't live without your morning coffee, head to F.R.E.A.K, which prides itself on its "Farm-to-Table” approach to their coffee. They grow, harvest, process, roast and brew their own coffee and all coffee served in their establishment has been roasted less than 24 hours previously. They also offer the option of either Cashew or Coconut milk in place of the traditional dairy offering.

 

SENIMAN'S COFFEE STUDIO

Another high quality, locally sourced organic coffee shop favoured by connoisseurs. At Seniman's all coffee is hand prepared either using a special syphon or hand pulling the coffee and they also offer coffee tasting sessions.

YOGA BARN

One of Ubud's highlights, the huge Yoga Barn offers South East Asia's largest full service yoga studio and holistic healing retreat center. The Barn offers an incredible range of yoga classes across their five yoga studios including Classical Hatha, Vinyasa Flow, Power, Pranayama, Restorative, Iyengar, Yin and Anusara, as well as other classes and workshops including meditation and sound medicine. The complex also houses the Garden Kafe (see above), KUSH, their Ayurvedic rejuvenation centre, as well as their holistic healing centre which offers a wide range of holistic treatments including detox and fasting retreats, colonics, traditional Chinese medicine, Acupuncture, Chiropractic and Cranio-sacral therapy, Naturopathy and more. They also offer highly regarded yoga teacher training courses. We'd definitely recommend queuing up for the Tibetan Bowl Meditation class where you're treated to a traditional singing bowls ritual purported to aid deeper relaxation and meditation.

RADIANTLY ALIVE

Radiantly Alive, located just across the road from the Bali Buda cafe, is Ubud's other leading yoga studio. With a more convenient location, it is smaller than the behemoth Yoga Barn and therefore offers a narrower schedule. That said most days still offer a pretty full range of classes from Gentle Flow to Vinyasa to Pilates.

COMO SHAMBHALA 

For the ultimate in healthy indulgence check yourself into the world-leading health retreat, COMO Shambhala Estate located a short distance outside Ubud. Beloved by the A-list, you'll leave this life-changing wellness sanctuary feeling like a totally new person. 


Look our for Part II - Seminyak coming shortly ...

 

 

 

Living the LaLa Life - Part 2 - Move + Shop

We’re back! After a lovely family hiatus in beautiful South Africa we’re recharged and re-energised.  To celebrate, here's Part 2 of our Healthy Holidays guide to LA and its gorgeous surroundings. While it’s tempting to throw your normal active routine out of the window while you’re away, being on holiday doesn’t mean you have to forgo your fitness habit. Why not use exercise as a way to explore a different angle to your destination of choice, whether that means hiking your nearest natural wonder or challenging yourself with a new class you’ve never tried before. Your body will thank you for it when you get home!

LA is the perfect city to explore in this respect, whatever your preference. Alongside stunning scenery you’ll find cutting edge exercise trends. Plus, what better fitspiration is there than having Rosie Huntingdon-Whitely or Alessandra Ambroisio next to you in class? We’ve also included a few of our favourite health and wellbeing shopping destinations for those souvenirs and hard to find superfoods and supplements that haven't made it to London yet.


MOVE

Image: http://runyoncanyon-losangeles.com/

Image: http://runyoncanyon-losangeles.com/

The concentrated masses of the body beautiful in LA means there is an exciting exercise option on almost every corner. We've included a few of the more unusual below for you to check out. Getting back to nature is a way of life in SoCal, as I’m sure it would be in London if we had the same stunning scenery (and weather!). Make the most of it and explore some of the beautiful hikes and other outdoors options while you’re in town.

Pound, various locations

An intense cardio workout developed by two female drummers. The class, self-styled as "boot camp meets band camp", leads you through a series of moves borrowed from aerobics and Pilates, all while drumming out various rhythms with a pair of neon green, quarter-pound drumsticks called Ripstix.

Pop Physique, various locations

Don't be put off by the American Apparel style branding, Pop Physique is one of LA's hottest ballet barre-based classes. The brainchild of Jennifer Williams, a former professional ballet dancer and Pilates Instructor, Pop Physique provides a modern LA spin on the original Lotte Berk concept that was created in London in the '50s and promises to create long, lean lines and tight, compact muscles. 

Cirque School, 5640 1/2 Hollywood Blvd.

Founded by an ex–Cirque du Soleil aerialist, this 6000 square foot studio in Hollywood dedicated to developing and honing your circus skills and body with classes in everything from trapeze to contortion as well as frequent specialty workshops taught by experts from around the world. The School’s classes are all taught by working circus professionals and utilize a unique hybrid of both professional circus training and Pilates. 

Hoopnotica, Venice +  Santa Monica

Relive your childhood with a hula hoop class that claims to burn 400 to 600 calories an hour. A full body workout - Hoopnotica uses brightly-colored weighted hoops for a low-impact aerobic workout that focuses on loosening your hips and toning your core.

Runyon Canyon Park, Hollywood

You know how you always see photos of celebs hiking with their dogs? Chances are they were taken at this 160 acre park in Hollywood. The park offers tons of hiking trails of various difficulties although the three main trails are Runyon Canyon Road, Star Trail, and Hero Trail which offer stunning views of the city. 

Malibu 

Head up to Malibu's stunning beaches for some celebrity house spotting. Take a run on one of the gorgeous beaches, making the most of the steps to take things up a level. Alternatively, why not try one of LA's hottest trends Stand-up Paddleboarding or "SUP". The more adventorous (and balanced) can even try SUP Yoga - wobbling into Warrior I while floating on a large surf board!


 SHOP

Image: Farmersmarketla.com

Image: Farmersmarketla.com

Forget Rodeo Drive and the other tourist trail shopping destinations, here’s our round-up of the markets and stores not to miss!

The Original Farmers Market, 6333 W. 3rd St. LA

An LA institution since 1934, this daily farmers market is a wonderful place to spend a day ambling around the hugely varied mix of restaurants, stores and stalls offering the best of LA’s local fresh produce and delicious groceries and speciality goodies.  

Erewhon Market, 7660 Beverly Blvd., LA

A pioneer in the natural foods industry since the '60s , this is a great health food and grocery store stocking a wide range of local and organic fresh produce and health food brands from trusted suppliers. They even offer free consultations with their in-house naturopathic doctor.

 Santa Monica Farmers Market, Santa Monica

Actually a collection of four different certified farmers' markets which operate at various locations around Santa Monica. Check their website to find out what's on when you're in town but bursting at the seams with amazing local, fresh seasonal produce. They take integrity seriously here with all vendors subject to regular on-farm inspections and other checks.

 Co-opportunity, Santa Monica

This local community owned grocery store has one of the best selections of fresh goodies on the west side, all served up in an eco-friendly and energy efficient space.

Earth Bar, Various locations

A concentrated nutritional powerhouse, come here to stock up on all kinds of amazing probiotics, supplements and superfoods. We recommend the West Hollywood flagship on Santa Monica Blvd.


 

Healthy Holidays

Here at The Holist we are super excited to have a jam packed few weeks of travel ahead, first to LA and Coachella festival, then to South Africa. Apologies in advance that things will be a little quieter than usual around here.

Image: Morguefile.com

Image: Morguefile.com

We love travel and adventures but recognise that when you’re away from home, exploring new places it can be hard to stick to your healthy guns. To help you we’ve put together a list of our top travel tips below to help you have the healthiest holiday you can! We subscribe to the 80/20 school of thought so don’t obsess, just do the best you can and enjoy all the amazing experiences that your holiday will bring!

What are your plans for Easter Weekend? Off anywhere exciting? Get in touch below and let us know how you stay healthy while travelling.


PREP

Image: quotepixel.com

Image: quotepixel.com

Benjamin Franklin’s quote is our unofficial motto here at The Holist, as you probably know by now! Holidays and travel and are no excuse! Start by thoroughly researching your destination for local healthy restaurants and markets to explore. If you know that you’ll be in an area where it is hard to find good healthy food then consider using Air BnB or a similar site to find a self-catering option. The run up to a holiday is always pretty hectic, trying to tie things up at work plus packing and last minute shopping. You won’t regret taking some time to prep for your journey, we promise you it is time well spent! 


HEALTHY SNACKS

Flying can be one of the most difficult parts of healthy travel. Airports very rarely have any good healthy options (although things are slowly getting better), as for plane food, our general rule is to avoid it like the plague. It is jam packed full of sugar, salt, additives and other nasties (how else do you think it can withstand the impact of all that travel?). That said, many of the major airlines do now offer you the chance to customise your menu if you take a poke around on their website. If you have this option then try and choose vegan or where available the “raw” option as these will give you the best chance of getting some actual real life fresh food (i.e. fruits and veggies).

Amongst all the confusion of the heightened security restrictions of recent years many people don’t realise that you can actually bring food from home on the plane with you. We have a tendency to get pretty hangry if food deprived, so to be on the safe side, we always bring our own snacks to keep our blood sugar levels stable and stave off headaches.

We like to stock up on:

  • cut up veggies (bonus points for water rich options such as cucumber, peppers and carrots);
  • fresh fruit (try and choose robust options that travel well e.g. apples and pre-chop fussy options such as mango, kiwi, pineapple etc.)
  • nuts and seeds (raw plus some flavoured to keep things interesting, we love Clearspring and Munchy Seeds)
  • healthy bars (homemade are the best if you have the time, but if not we love Nakd, Nom and Love Raw bars)
  • chunky salads (avoid leaves that will wilt, instead check out this yummy Hemsley + Hemsley plane friendly option)
  • some healthy treats like bliss balls or raw chocolate or anything from Upcakes (you’re on holiday after all!)
Image: Nick Hopper, Vogue.co.uk

Image: Nick Hopper, Vogue.co.uk


HYDRATE

We all know the importance of staying hydrated, but at 30,000 ft. it’s even more important. No-one wants to be that passenger who has to keep harassing the stewardess for another thimble sized cup of water, so where you can, bring your own big bottle on and if possible, try and grab some super hydrating coconut water in the terminal too. Forget the myth that a glass of wine will help you drift off and avoid alcohol at all costs it just further dehydrates you and adds to your poor body’s work.

If you are at the mercy of security restrictions, bring a big empty flask on with you and ask the stewardess to fill it up for you before take off. We love the clever Citrus Zinger bottle, you can just pop in your fruits of choice before you head off to the airport and then get the water filled up on the plane for an added alkaline hit. Our favourite combo is lemon, cucumber and mint.

Image: Zing-anything.co.uk

Image: Zing-anything.co.uk

We are tea-obsessives here at The Holist, so we also love to bring a few of our favourite tea bags away with us for an easy win and to enable us to keep up our bedtime sleep rituals. So why not try and keep a couple handy in your carry-on bag for the flight too. You can even bring an empty thermos on the plane and get it filled up with hot water before take-off. Flying at high altitudes can really mess with water retention and your digestion, so if you’re prone to bloating while flying try and pack teas with peppermint, fennel, ginger and turmeric to help ease the pain (Pukka have some great combos).

Aside from keeping your body hydrated from the inside we’ve all experienced the havoc planes can wreak on your skin. Our favourite on-board remedy is Trilogy’s Rosehip oil – we slather it all over our face (and a bit on the tips of our hair) throughout the flight to keep skin plump and hydrated.

Image: trilogyproducts.com

Image: trilogyproducts.com


 RELAX 

A cramped aeroplane cabin isn’t the ideal place to try and relax but there are a couple of things which can help you to zen out. Firstly, counteract the horrible stale air with a stash of your favourite essential oils. We find that Lavender, Valerian, Jasmine and Lemon Balm are particularly good for flights.

A plane ride is also the perfect time to try and work on your meditation practice. Download a good meditation app before you head off and try and get in the zone. Having tried a ton of meditation app, our all-time favourite is Headspace, by he of amazingly relaxing voice Andy Puddicombe.

 We all know that familiar feeling, you’re all ready to drift off when that toddler in front starts screaming and you feel the rage rising! Have a go-to relaxing playlist of your favourite sleep songs and block out the world. Stuck for inspiration? Try “Weightless” by Marconi Union, supposedly the world’s most relaxing song.

You Tube: Marconi Union Weightless


MOVE

Yes, yes, we you’ve heard it before but you must get up and move around. Boring but so, so important. At the back of most big planes there’s space to have a little move around and stretch – make the most of it! Why not have some fun with a little plane yoga and have a giggle at faces of the surprised passengers next to you when you start dropping in to bridge pose in the aisle. Check out yoga superstar Tara Stile's top tips below.

You Tube: Tara Stiles


SLEEP

Now no-one is trying to pretend that a cramped aeroplane seat is an ideal place to get your vital shut eye but if there is one thing we’ve found that really helps it’s a great eye mask. Here at The Holist we’ve tried a fair few and have settled on The Tempur Sleep Mask. Yes, it’s expensive and pretty industrial but it is nothing short of life changing and provides total darkness (the holy grail of eye masks!).

Image: tempurpedic.com

Image: tempurpedic.com


GREENS POWDER

It’s not always easy or practical to bring your blender away with you to get your green goodness smoothie hit. Never fear, there are some great greens powders out there that you can bring away with you to tide you over and keep you energised. Our personal favourite is Amazing Grass Raw Reserve Green Superfood which are packed full of superfood goodness with the added plus of probiotics,  it comes in handy little sachets you can carry around in your handbag and onto the plane. 

Image: amazinggrass.com

Image: amazinggrass.com


 

 

Dreamy Destination Spas

As spring slowly dawns and finally brings an end to an awful winter, our thoughts are already turning to summer holidays and sunnier climes. Forget sunburn, Pina Coladas and overindulgence, wellness warriors in the know are using their hard earned holidays to recharge, relax and reboot.

Looking for some escape inspiration? Check out our round-up of the world's finest luxury health and wellbeing destination resorts. 

What's your dream healthy holiday? Have we missed anywhere that you think should be included? Let us know below!

Image: anandaspa.com

Image: anandaspa.com


Ananda - Uttaranchal, India

Image: anandaspa.com

Image: anandaspa.com

Overview

Set in a former Maharaja’s palace overlooking the holy Ganges, Ananda is nestled in the foothills of the mystical Himalayas, a location nothing short of magical. Given the resort’s proximity to Rishikesh, the purported ‘birthplace of yoga’, Ananda is heavily traditional influenced by the Indian sciences of yoga, Ayurveda and Vedanta which are carefully married with modern spa therapies which makes it the perfect place for total rejuvenation of the body, mind and soul.

Programmes

Available for between 5 – 21 nights depending on programme: Weight Management, Ayurvedic Rejuvenation, Detox, Yogic Detox, Yoga, Renew, Stress Management and Active.

Facilities and Activities

Set in 24,000 square feet, Ananda offers 20 treatment rooms, outdoor pool, saunas, steam bath, hydro therapy, yoga pavilion and a gym. Activities offered include yoga, Vedanta lectures, cooking classes, a 6-hole golf course, white water rafting, trekking, wildlife safari and art and culture programmes.

Spa Treatments

Ananda offers an extensive menu of over 80 body and beauty treatments all integrating the traditional Indian systems of Ayurveda contemporary Western spa approaches. The 24 treatment rooms provide space for Ayurveda, Oriental and European systems of holistic health and the spa houses a team of qualified nutritionists, Western & Ayurvedic physicians, spa therapists with knowledge of ancient Indian sciences and modern western treatments. The treatment menu is heavily influenced by Ayurvedic traditions and practices and tailored for your individual constitution (your 'dosha') but also includes more traditional massage, body, nail and facial options.

Cuisine

Ananda believes in the importance of bio-individuality when it comes to diet, a philosophy which, alongside the major tenets of Ayurveda, heavily influences their culinary offerings. The cuisine offered is rich in fresh natural and unprocessed foods low in fat and calories such as whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, low-fat dairy products.

Celebrity Guests

Uma Thurman, Heidi Klum, Ricky Martin and Oprah Winfrey.

Awards

Spa of the Year (North & West Asia), Asia Spa Awards (2013), Best Spa, Readers Choice Awards, Condé Nast Traveller, Russia (2012), Best Spa in the World & No. 1 - "Spa Retreats" category, No. 3 "Best Destination Spa" category, Condé Nast Traveller Reader's Spa Awards (UK) (2012), Best Spa for Yoga and Mind-Body-Sprit & Favourite Spa in India, SpaFinder Readers Choice Awards (2012), The Most Heavenly Hideaway, Tatler Spa Awards (2012).


COMO Shambhala Estate - Bali, Indonesia

Image: Comohotels.com

Image: Comohotels.com

Overview

COMO Shambhala is an institution within the luxury wellness resort scene. The multi-award winning resort has been voted as Condé Nast Traveller's Best Destination Spa no less than four times. Nestled amongst the mountains and lush rice paddies of Ubud in Bali, the resort describes itself as a "completely immersive, 360-degree wellbeing experience".

Programmes

Guests can enrol on a variety of wellbeing packages such as Ayurvedic, Cleanse, Be Active, Stress Management, Rejuvenation and Oriental Medicine.

Facilities & Activities

In addition to any specific programme inclusions, the resort offers a range of complementary activities including pilates, yoga, estate walks, circuit training, meditation, qigong and rock climbing, complemented by lifestyle lectures such as 'The Art of Living', 'Intuitive Eating', and 'Secrets to Longevity' and Juicing Classes. The Estate also offers access to resident nutritionists and Ayurvedic doctors.

Spa Treatments

The amazing spa menu offers individually tailored treatments including multiple types of massage, facials for restorative skincare and authentic Ayurvedic programmes as well as Acupuncture and Hydrotherapy.

Cuisine

A number of the curated wellness programmes have specific dietetic requirements built-in, but for general guests, COMO Shambhala's signature cuisine is inspired by the 'living foods' school of thought. The resort claims that "this maintains the nutritional integrity of the original foods’ essential enzymes, vitamins and minerals and allows you to benefit from the ‘life force’ of specific ingredients - many of them raw". Ingredients are organic and locally sourced whenever possible, and the resort actively accommodates food intolerances or other specific dietary requirements.

 Celebrity Guests

COMO Shambhala has serious A-list credentials – Daniel Craig supposedly got in shape for Casino Royale here.

Awards

All Natural Treatment (Warm Muscle Wrap Category) Harper's BAZAAR Spa Awards (2014), Spa Cuisine of the Year, AsiaSpa Awards (2013) Best Spa Hotel ), The Smith Hotel Awards (2013), Best Destination Spa and The World's Top 100, Condé Nast Traveller Readers' Travel Awards (2012 and 2013), Best Destination Spa, Condé Nast Traveller Readers' Spa Awards (2012 and 2013), Destination Spa of the Year - Asia & Australasia, World Spa & Wellness Awards (2013), Best International Spa (Second Prize), The Sunday Times Travel Magazine Readers' Awards (2012), Destination Spa of the Year, AsiaSpa Awards (2012), Top 3 Best Spa Retreat, World's Top 30, Luxury Travel Magazine Gold List (2012).


Miraval Resort - Arizona, USA

Image: Miravalresorts.com

Image: Miravalresorts.com

Overview

Set in the splendid isolation of the Santa Catalina Mountains in Tucson, Arizona, Miraval is a luxury destination retreat dedicated to wellbeing and relaxation favoured by America’s jet-setters and A-listers in need of some time out.

Programmes

Girls Getaway, Inclusive Package, Discover Miraval, Authentic Circle Exclusive.

Facilities & Activities

Set within 400 acres and surrounded by mountains, the resort offers a range of activities and classes including yoga, meditation, circuit training, boot camp, TRX, spinning, trail running, equine therapy and horse riding, tennis, hiking, biking, and a high rope challenge course.

 Spa Treatments

Miraval offers over 100 spa treatments including Ayurvedic treatments, speciality body work, massages, facials, body treatments, salon services, and unique treatments such as Spirit Flight, Qi Journey, and Taiz Sensorium.

Cuisine

Seasonal, ‘mindful’ and healthy low calorie cuisine.

Celebrity Guests

Oprah Winfrey, Katherine Jackson, Ellen and Mel Gibson.

Awards

Top 10 Best Destination Spas Condé Nast Traveller Readers' Poll  (2014), 10 Best New Spas in North America, Fodor's Travel (2013), Best Wellness Spa in North America, The Spa Traveller Readers' Choice Awards (2013), World's Best Wellness Resorts, USA Today (2013), 8 Best Spa Getaways Around the World, ELLE World's Best Spas (2013), Top 5 Best Destination Spa, Travel+Leisure World's Best Awards (2013).


Chiva-Som - Hua Hin, Thailand

Image: Chivasom.com

Image: Chivasom.com

Overview

Now in it’s fifteenth year, Chiva-Som is a regular in the Condé Naste Traveller’s 'Best Destination Spa' lists. Hidden away within 7 acres of tropical beachfront gardens, Chiva-som is around 185km south on Bangkok in the royal resort of Hua Hin. Chiva-Som which means “Haven of Life” is a pioneer in combining traditional Asian therapies with cutting-edge Western health and wellness developments.  Chiva-Som’s holistic health modalities include Traditional Chinese Medicine, the ancient Indian system of Ayurveda, Western Naturopathy, energy therapies and many more.

Programmes

Chiva-som’s structured detox programs include: A Taste of Chiva-Som, Art of Detox, Eternal Youth, Fitness, Inner Peace, Natural Healing, Spa Pampering and Weight Management.

Facilities & Activities

Chiva-som offers 70 treatment rooms as well as comprehensive resort facilities including indoor and outdoor swimming pools, a kinesis studio, gym, watsu pool, flotation pool, bathing pavilion with kneipp bath, and the usual sauna, steam, and Jacuzzi offerings. A full complement of activities are offered including Tai Chi, Qi Kong,personal training, yoga, pilates, meditation, TRX, Zumba, boot camp and gyrokinesis biking, tennis, sea kayaking, and golf.

Spa Treatments

With over 85 therapists offering over 150 treatments marrying traditional holistic elements with a state of the art medi-spa offerings, the options are endless. Alongside Thai massages, body wraps, facials and Oriental foot rituals, they also offer Che Nei Tsang, Mind Training, Shiatsu, Watsu, Reiki and many others. The recently renovated Niranlada Medi-spa also offers state-of-the-art aesthetic assessments, treatments and minimally invasive cosmetic surgery.

Cusisine

Chiva-Som’s spa cuisine has won a number of awards for its culinary spread. Expect fresh and unprocessed ingredients with a focus on low fat, lower calorie food with some vegetarian and wheat, gluten, dairy and sugar-free dishes. Many of the detox packages include a structured meal program supervised by Chiva-som's naturopathic practitioners and holistic medical staff.

Celebrity Guests

Elizabeth Hurley, Kate Moss, Naomi Campbell, and Maria Sharapova.

Awards

Favourite Spa in Asia, Best for Weight Loss, Best Healthy Spa Cuisine,Best for Eco Spa and Favourite Spa for Yoga, SpaFinder Wellness Readers’ Choice Crystal Awards (2013), Top 5 Best Honeymoon Resort, Fodor’s Travel Poll (2013), Luxury Travel Magazine 2013 Gold List, Top 25 Spa Hotels & Resorts in Asia, Smart Travel Asia Best in Travel Poll (2013), Enduring Excellence Award, Tatler Spa Awards (2012), Top 5 – Favourite Destination Spa, Condé Nast Traveller Readers’ Awards (2012), Top 5 – Best Spa, Ultratravel 100 Awards The Telegraph, UK (2012).


SHA Wellness Clinic - Alicante, Spain

Image: Shawellnessclinic.com

Image: Shawellnessclinic.com

Overview

SHA describes itself as “a wellness clinic dedicated to improving people’s health and wellbeing through a fusion of ancient oriental disciplines and revolutionary western techniques”. Selling itself as a clinic rather than a resort, despite being perched on a mountainside overlooking the Mediterranean, SHA is less your typical “wellness” resort and more like a super slick futuristic hospital.

Programmes

Alongside its various general programmes SHA offers specific programmes including: Weight Loss, Intensive Detox, Anti-Stress, Stop Smoking, Sleep Well, Absolute Rejuvenation. SHA also offers a series of targeted aesthetic rejuvenation treatments including: facial, corporal, biologic natural, hand, integral and male rejuvenation.

Facilities & Activities

SHA provides a range of outdoor activities such as biking, climbing, golf, horseback riding, bird watching, jogging, Nordic walking and tennis and water sports including sailing, canoeing, kayaking, diving, snorkelling, swimming, windsurfing and fishing, as well as yoga and pilates. They also offer personal training sessions, lifestyle coaching and spiritual lectures. The resort’s bespoke hydrotherapy area also offers therapeutic pools, physiotherapy and hydro-massage beds, an invigorating pool, tepidarium, sauna, calidarium, and several themed areas including relax, chromo-therapy, music-therapy and a zen-garden.

Spa Treatments

As a medi-spa, SHA offers access to specialists across the areas of general medicine, natural therapies, sleep disorders, anti-smoking, aesthetic medicine as well as laboratory and genetic diagnostic services along side the more traditional offerings. On the treatment side offerings include various massages, water therapies aromatherapy, colour therapy, craniosacral therapy, hot stone treatments, hydrotherapy, lymphatic drainage, osteopathy, physiotherapy, reflexology, reiki and shiatsu.

Cuisine

The cuisine at SHA is based on a fusion of Mediterranean and Japanese cuisine with strong macrobiotic influences. SHA's goal to provide guests with a healthy diet based on organic and ecological products grown on-site but it can be quite strict.

Celebrity Guests

Simon Cowell, Kylie Minouge, Naomi Campbell and various fashion editors recovering from the stresses of Fashion Week.

Awards

Condé Nast Johansens, Knight Frank Award for Outstanding Excellence and Innovation (2014), Best European Destination Spa by Condé Nast Johansens (2012), Best Spanish Spa, SpaFinder (2012), Best Medical and Beauty Spa, FIT Health & Wellness (2011), Best International Medical Spa, Condé Nast Traveller (2010).