Publié le 21/01/2022

Well-Being:
Tradition, Art, and Culture

In almost every culture around the world, it’s possible to find time-proven practices that honor physical and spiritual ancient well-being rites and provide a chance to discover a land’s historic and cultural treasures. This world tour offers ways to reconnect with ourselves and others.

Well-Being: |Tradition, Art, and Culture

Le Taha'a, French Polynesia

In almost every culture around the world, it’s possible to find time-proven practices that honor physical and spiritual ancient well-being rites and provide a chance to discover a land’s historic and cultural treasures. This world tour offers ways to reconnect with ourselves and others.

The onsen: Japanese hot springs
 

The experience:

Japan has over 27,000 hot springs and nearly 3,000 onsens with adjacent accommodations. The naturally warm onsen water, rich in sulfur or minerals, soothes and rejuvenates body and mind. Each of Japan’s regions has establishments with specific therapeutic virtues at sites where you can gather with family or friends.

Where to find it: 

Dip into the Hakuryu Onsen of the Tobira Onsen Myojinkan Hotel, offering both the Myojinkan hot spring and its exquisite natural surroundings, where you will be lulled by birdsong and the murmuring river.

Other locations:

Nishimuraya Honkan, Beniya Mukayu, Gora Kadan, Wasurenosato Gajoen (Japan).

Gora Kadan's onsen in Japan
© Joann Pai

 

The salt room: soothe as you breathe


The experience:

Halotherapy (from the Greek halos, meaning “salt”) has been known since ancient times for its beneficial effects on the respiratory tract. It involves isolating yourself in a relaxation room, surrounded by a warm, orange-tinged ambiance, where the walls and floor are made of pink Himalayan salt, known to be particularly pure. Salt is cleansing, antibacterial, and antimicrobial: it calms, soothes, and detoxifies, much like a weekend at the shore.

Where to find it: 

The Hotel & Spa du Castellet offers a three-hour sensory journey (bath, hydromassage, sauna, hammam, etc.) that concludes with 30 minutes in its salt grotto, lounging in a heated armchair as daydreams dance in your head.

Other locations:

Gilpin Hotel & Lake House (United Kingdom), Bellevue Hotel & Spa (Italy)

The salt cave of the Hotel du Castellet in Provence
© Aline Gérard - LiveAndShoot

 

The floatation tank: weightless inner peace


The experience:

Relive the sensations of life in the womb by immersing yourself in hot water nearing 35°C (95°F) with an exceedingly high salt content: thus promised the flotation tanks that emerged in the 1950s in the United States. The body’s weightlessness lets the brain disconnect, as its activity is very much occupied with seeking balance. Sourced from underground deposits in Germany, the Epsom salts used are rich in bioavailable magnesium to soothe and recharge your body’s mineral needs.

Where to find it: 

The Nature-Spa at the Hostellerie La Cheneaudière has a Flotarium: a pool of water containing four tons of Epsom salt, privately reservable for floating solo or with someone you love.

Another property:

A Quinta da Auga Hotel & Spa (Spain).

The flotarium of the Hostellerie La Cheneaudière & Spa in Alsace

 

The hammam: cleansing body and mind


The experience:

Greek and Roman baths first used steam as a way to purify the body, and the ritual then spread to the Middle East. The Moorish bath was where mothers and daughters went to bathe and purify themselves each week and where brides-to-be prepared for matrimony. Such rituals became more widespread, evolving into an essential spa protocol to detoxify the body and open the skin’s pores before a treatment.

Where to find it:

In Morocco, naturally, where the Tikida Golf Palace in Agadir offers a traditional ritual, including a eucalyptus-scented black soap scrub performed by the expert hands of a kessala, a Rhassoul clay body wrap scented with orange blossom, and a relaxing massage.

Other properties:  

L’Heure Bleue Palais and Palais Ronsard (Morocco).

The hammam of the Tikida Golf Palace in Agadir, Morocco

 

Polynesian massage: ancient medicine


The experience:

On this archipelago at the ends of the earth, massage is considered traditional medicine that is practiced in all families from birth, particularly at life’s milestone moments, such as a wedding or childbirth. Through the art of touch, Taurumi, a truly holistic massage form (tau meaning “to put down”; rumi meaning “to knead”), connects body and mind, heart and soul in a moment of seamless harmony.

Where to find it:

The spa at Le Taha'a by Pearl Resorts offers massages inspired by these ancestral techniques, incorporating heady monoi oil, as well as tamanu oil, known also as “sacred oil” for its healing and anti-inflammatory properties.

Other locations:

Le Bora Bora by Pearl Resorts and Nuku Hiva by Pearl Resorts in French Polynesia.

Monoi oil massage, Le Bora Bora by Pearl Resorts, French Polynesia

 

Hot springs: therapy through the skin


The experience:

Outdoors or indoors, at a natural site or the pool at a special spa, soak yourself in hot springs. These waters, rich in minerals and trace elements – including sulfur, which soothes and softens your skin – bubble up from the depths of the earth, offering not only their therapeutic properties, but also, in days of old, a hub for social activity.

Where to find it: 

After a stroll in the snow, sink with a sigh into the warm waters of Dunton Hot Springs in Colorado, beneath star-spangled skies. Ranging in temperature from 30° to 40°C (85° to 106° F), the water is rich in calcium bicarbonate, iron, and manganese, boosting blood circulation and softening the skin.

Other properties:

Volando Urai Spring Spa & Resort (Taiwan), La Bastide en Gascogne, Le Château de Riell (France) and Zornitza Family Estate (Bulgaria).

The Colorado Hot Springs at Dunton Hot Springs, Colorado, USA

 

Elemental well-being in Costa Rica


The experience:

Costa Rica, a land of lush, protective vegetation, vibrant, nourishing soil, and water that flows ceaselessly down mountainsides and along valleys. A land where the art of well-being is rooted in the harmony among all these elements. This means that massage and wrap rituals, using local berries and fruits, traditionally take place outside, forging a unique and unforgettable bond with Nature.

Where to find it:

Nayara Springs has a spa overlooking the verdant canopy, a sheltered paradise where you can relax in the natural hot springs, their waters flowing directly from the Arenal Volcano.

Another location:

El Silencio Lodge & Spa in Costa Rica.

Traditional massage with local products, El Silencio Lodge & Spa, Costa Rica

 

Plants and spices for health


The experience:

On the African continent, plants and spices have precious medicinal virtues used in health and beauty rituals that have been passed down from generation to generation. Cloves or black sesame, when mixed with moisturizing coconut oil and massaged into the skin, relieve most everyday ailments by stimulating blood circulation and strengthening the immune system.

Where to find it:

On what’s known as “Spice Island” at the Zanzibar White Sand Luxury Villas & Spa, where a holistic clove massage is guided by a single mantra: hakuna matata, meaning “no worries” in Swahili.

Another location:  

Royal Chundu in Zambia.

Massage room, Zanzibar White Sand Luxury Villa & Spa, Zanzibar

 

Related articles in our Magazine
10 Palatial Villas |for a Group Getaway
10 Palatial Villas for a Group Getaway
Click here to read
Away from it all
Away from it all
Click here to read