With the new year comes new dreams, aspirations, and goals. Those looking to plan a rejuvenating trip to feel refreshed in 2021 (once travel resumes, of course!) should look no further than the following wellness destinations and experiences.
The Saxon Hotel, Villas & Spa
An oasis nestled in the metropolis of Johannesburg, the Saxon Hotel, Villas & Spa is an international wellness destination and a lovely, transcendent retreat from the busy city. The Spa of the hotel boasts many natural features and design elements that are strategically integrated throughout the facility to promote both vitality and balance. While relaxing and pampering at the spa, guests will easily forget they’re in a city as the peaceful garden and heavy greenery surroundings of the hotel conceals the hustle and bustle of the outside beyond. The signature scent throughout the spa blends natural and therapeutic rosemary, eucalyptus, rose, jasmine petals, pomegranate blossoms, musk, cedarwood, and sandalwood to both revitalize and relax guests. Treatments offered at the spa also celebrate nature, natural elements, and holistic wellbeing. The hotel itself will soon launch an in-room virtual wellness class program. Within the privacy of each room of the all-suite property, guests will have access to a wide variety of classes to choose from including guided mediations and instructor-led fitness sessions.
For a unique and transformative wellness experience, the spa offers a signature treatment combining both sound and crystal therapies, aptly named the Sound Therapy Advanced with Crystal Therapy. This treatment allows guests to reach a deep state of relaxation and re-energize their chakra centers with the unique healing properties of clear quartz for expanding consciousness, amethyst for purifying the mind, rose quartz to promote love and inner healing and aventurine crystals to combat electromagnetic pollution while bringing about calm. Used together with the Tibetan singing bowls, their vibrational frequency is enhanced, cleansing, balancing and re-energizing the body’s energy flow. Therapy aids in reducing stress levels and stimulating the immune system.
For a wellness retreat that also offers art, culture, wine, modern cuisine and stunning surroundings, Cape Town’s Ellerman House is the perfect destination. Ellerman House is the quintessential urban retreat for discerning luxury travelers wanting to experience the very best of South Africa. Located in Bantry Bay, Cape Town it offers spectacular Atlantic Ocean views against the dramatic backdrop of Lion’s Head. Clifton’s beaches are within walking distance, while the best local attractions are a 10-minute drive away. Originally a private residence, the historic Cape Edwardian-style mansion has 11 rooms and 2 suites, two ultra-modern 3-bedroom villas, the tranquil Ellerman House Spa and terraced indigenous gardens. The Ellerman House Wine Gallery, a cellar for the hotel’s 7500-bottle collection of South African vintage wines, offers an interactive, experiential journey into the world of wine. Enhancing the entire property is the owner’s extensive collection of original South African art. Modern cuisine that reflects the best of local and seasonal flavors, excellent wine pairings, generous-hearted hospitality, intimate music storyteller sessions and tailor-made excursions add up to a world-class guest experience that remains authentically South African.
The spa & wellness team at Ellerman House in offers a Sleep Ritual, scientifically designed to help the body naturally increase melatonin and evoke deep sleep. Sleep is responsible for a broad spectrum of things, from muscle growth and repair to the consolidation of memory; by improving sleep quality, one takes a preventative approach to healthcare. Adopting the Ellerman House Sleep Ritual promotes the parasympathetic nervous system, reduces inflammation, manages stress and improves mental focus. In addition to lowering the body temperature, the Ellerman House spa team uses key elements such as Lemon Verbena & Argan Oil Bath Salts, sleep-enhancing Stillness Body Butter and CBD Chamomile tea to support deep sleep. The idea is for the guests to take this experience home with them and empower them for the rest of their lives.
Quasar Expeditions offers guests the chance to disconnect from their devices and connect with their surroundings for a week of wellbeing, thanks to remote cruises on their yachts, the M/V Evolution and the M/Y Grace. Sailing through the secluded Galapagos Islands, the cruises allow guests to spend a week getting up close and personal with the islands’ amazing animals by snorkeling, swimming, hiking, and kayaking. Adventurers can expect to see plenty of native wildlife, including turtles, sea lions, and the infamous blue-footed boobies, creating a once in a lifetime experience – without any distractions. Complete with delicious meals, time to relax in the hot tubs, and plenty of space to unwind in a deck chair under the sun, travelers come home revitalized and ready to start the year with a new appreciation for the beauty found in nature.
Pangkor Laut Resort
Nestled alongside the Straits of Malacca and located three miles off the West Coast of Malaysia, Pangkor Laut Resort is a private island haven for travelers looking for a wellness getaway. The paradise wonderland weaves together natural beauty as the resort is surrounded by beaches and glowing evening sunsets, giving off a vibe of serenity and relaxation. The private island has been two million years in the making, and the resort features 143 chic private rooms that perfectly complement its romantic surroundings and clear turquoise waters.
Guests spend their days lounging on the private beaches, delighting in a traditional meal at one of the property’s five restaurants, and relaxing on their balcony taking in the unique sounds of macaque monkeys in the background while enjoying glorious sea views.
Additionally, guests can enjoy a spa treatment at Spa Village Pangkor Laut, a unique retreat that extols the healing cultures of the region. Spa Village Pangkor Laut comprises a number of specially built structures designed to facilitate an extensive range of treatments from China, Japan, India, Thailand, Bali, and Malaysia.
These include eight treatment pavilions, a deluxe Belian Treatment Pavilion, three Healing Huts, which include Chinese Herbal, Ayurvedic and Malay Huts, two Bath Houses, three Spa Huts, and three Nap Gazebos. Programs combine physical and spiritual health and well-being and are based on one of four concepts: Rejuvenation and Longevity, Relaxation and Stress Reduction, Detoxification, and Romance.
Tschuggen Grand Hotel
Nestled in the Alpine region of Arosa, the Tschuggen Grand Hotel is known for its unique ultramodern Mario Botta–designed Tschuggen Bergoase Spa. The 54,000 square-foot spa and wellness center is built directly into the mountain and connected to the hotel by a glass walkway. A four-story retreat waits behind the sail-shaped windows, including a rock grotto, fire pit, indoor and outdoor pools and saunas, and private spa suites. Travelers can also take advantage of yoga sessions and personal training.
In addition to the one-of-a-kind Tschuggen Bergoase, the hotel offers a variety of outdoor wellness experiences led by the executive staff. General Manager Stefan Noll leads various biking excursions on the mountain trails, Food and Beverage Manager Claudio Laager takes guests on a mushroom foraging trip through the forests in the summer and leads stick bread baking and chestnut roasting in the winter, and Executive Assistant Manager Leonie Schefenacker guides travelers on moonlight and sunrise hikes on the local trails.
Singita Volcanoes National Park
A stay at Singita Kwitonda Lodge is sure to awaken a sense of self-discovery and reflection as guests immerse themselves in one of the most remarkable natural places in the world. Opportunities to retreat, relax and reflect are plentiful at Kwitonda as the lodge breathes a sense of peace, quiet and tranquility into its visitors. The Singita wellness philosophy creates an environment for urban-weary guests to reconnect to nature, revive their senses, restore their body and mind, and explore our African culture. All treatments are offered in the comfort of guests’ suites or in the tranquility of their private outdoor deck.
For those looking to include meditations in their routine, Singita set out to capture tech sounds of the African Plains with a range of meditations and sound backdrops available on SoundCloud, including guided meditations and bird sounds in tranquil playlists to set a calming soundscape for the day. Meanwhile, the Singita Lebombo Choir breathes life into traditional songs that describe life in the bush, memories of love and loss, transporting listeners to the Warm Heart of Africa. For those craving the bush, the Sunset Sounds at Singita Lebombo transcribes symphony of nature, from the crunching of tires on sand, to the lion’s roar and the owl’s hoots.
Fregate Island Private
Fregate Island Private is one of the most revered hideaways in the Seychelles, offering privacy and seclusion with 17 beautifully crafted villas throughout pristine nature, as well as seven beaches- including the only privatizable beach in the Indian Ocean. Guests can spend plenty of time outdoors by hiking and mountain biking over six miles of trails through the jungle, diving and snorkeling in the bright blue sea and enjoying guided nature walks with Fregate’s resident conservationist.
For true relaxation, guests are invited to an introductory yoga session in the morning and a welcome massage at Rock Spa, which uses natural ingredients from the island in their products.
In Setswana, Tswalu means a “new beginning” and will leave guests feeling refreshed after days spent exploring all that the Kalahari has to offer. Tswalu is a place for those who value access to South Africa’s last remaining wilderness – a privilege that far outweighs more conventional notions of luxury. As the largest, privately owned reserve in South Africa, its wide, open spaces have long drawn travelers seeking deeply layered, immersive experiences. From the ancient quartzite Korannaberg mountains to the southern Kalahari’s grassy, red sand dunes rippling away to the horizon, Tswalu offers what discerning guests crave most – space.
This is a place to recalibrate and reconnect, both with nature and yourself. In addition, Tswalu’s award-winning spa is crafted from natural materials such as reed ceilings and dry-stone walls in the relaxing indoor and outdoor showers. Treatments range from aromatic candle massages to exfoliation with red dune sand, desert mineral crystals, and botanical fibers, all sourced from the Kalahari. When they aren’t recharging in the spa, guests can enjoy Tswalu’s safari drives during the day and plenty of outdoor time under the stars at night.
Located in a remote corner of Southern Finland on Lake Päijänne, the second largest lake in Finland, the Villa Jolla is a secluded gem with spectacular views of Päijänne National Park. Guests will delight in the spectacular views of the lake from the private decks, pier, and sandy beach and the spacious Scandinavian Villa can easily accommodate fourteen guests. Guests looking to recharge in nature can spend their days canoeing between the nearby island and inlets. Additionally, the property includes a separate and private mini-spa in the building next door, where guests can take in views of the lake from the sauna recharging in peace and quiet.