Therapies (Holistic & Alternative Medicine)

Wellness Travel Recovery

The New Wellness

The wellness travel industry is moving  forward in the wake of the drastic effects of COVID-19 with upgraded hygiene measures, biosecurity and digital check-ins, all part of the necessary procedures for today’s conscious consumer.

Wellness resorts and medical spas around the globe are opening their doors with revised retreats and experiences, updated treatments and the introduction of new therapies.

All Natural – Lefay Eco Spas

Lefay Eco Spas are set in the natural landscapes of Northern Italy and are offering new packages to promote nature-related wellness. The resorts are located in Northern Lake Garda Park and Adamello Brenta Natural Park, where guests can enjoy a wide range of outdoor activities.

The Lefay Collection is offering  new re-opening packages:

Adventure In The Dolomites:

This three-night retreat invites guests to take a day hiking in the mountains and a day e-biking.  Both days will be led by a private guide.  Guests will have access to the spas, pools, fitness centre, and relaxation areas.

Lefay Natural Wellness On Lake Garda:

With a focus on rebalancing, this programme includes two rebalancing activities for the body, a guided walk through the five stations of the resort’s energy garden and a personalised Lefay SPA Energy Massage. Guests can practise holistic rebalancing activities guided by Lefay’s therapists outside in the resort’s therapeutic energy garden, consisting of five stations associated with ancient symbols and meanings, based on classical chinese medicine,  The activities which are integral to the Lefay SPA Method, are held amongst the age-old trees and Mediterranean shrubs. Directly overlooking the lake, the resort’s large 11 hectare national park also comprises a running circuit, a fitness trail and eight stations to improve muscle elasticity.   A personalised energy massage is also included.

Lefay Eco Spa: https://www.lefayresorts.com/en

Boosting Wellness – Longevity Wellness Worldwide

Longevity Wellness Worldwide, located along the Algarve coast in Portugal, offers a specific focus on programmes for the immunity system.

Longevity Cegonha Country Club

Immune System Boosting Wellness Services available at the hotel Wellness/Medical Spa:

These aim towards prevention, rebalancing dysfunctions, regenerating health, boosting the immune system and promoting physical, mental and holistic wellbeing. A special focus will be placed on the Immune System Boosting Wellness Services available as a part of the wellness offering.

Longevity Body & Mind Group Classes – Yoga, Pilates, Stretching and others to improve overall wellness, relaxation and sleep
Longevity Nutrition – Optional Longevity Meal Plans during your stay: healthy and tasty (solid or liquid) Immune System Boosting diet (subject to Doctor or Nutrition approval, requires consultation)
Longevity Nutrition & Wellbeing Consultation – tips on foods and holistic therapies to improve the Immune System (includes a home based personalized meal plan for regular and sustainable optimization of the Immune System)
Longevity Energetic Healing – Energy Medicine techniques to awaken energies that bring resilience and enthusiasm to our life and greater vitality to body, mind, and spirit.
Longevity Personal Training – personalised and focused training on the different needs of the client

Additional immunity boosting programmes include Ozone Therapy will be available at Longevity Health and Wellness Hotel, Alvor. Ozone has analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and detoxifying properties, which makes it an excellent treatment to reduce inflammation, reduce free radicals.

Longevity Alvor (www.longevityalvor.com)

Longevity Wellness Worldwide: https://longevitywellnessworldwide.com/

Immunity boosting wellness

Wellness to boost immunity

The New Chenot Palace Weggis in Switzerland

The renowned Chenot Group has recently opened a new state of the art medical spa. As part of the brand’s innovation, Chenot Palace Weggis will feature new Chenot Rooms with sleeping technology where acoustics, light, and bed linen technologies which revert body heat back into energy have been scientifically interwoven with interior design and architecture to create a natural sleeping environment that provides an optimised, restful sleep.  Chenot Palace Weggis offers holistic and personalised programmes for detoxing, energising and resetting the body and mind.

Chenot Palace Weggis, https://www.chenotpalaceweggis.com/

A Forest Spa In Austria

Reopening in Austria is the Naturhotel Forsthofgut, located at the foot of Leogang’s Steinberg mountains, an hour from Salzburg. It transformed from a humble logging station into Europe’s first ‘forest spa’, using selected materials to capture nature within its WaldSpa. With pure Alpine water, clean mountain air, cosy fires and natural setting, treatments are centred around nature and regional products. The hotel also offers Alpine vegan cuisine and wines.

Naturhotel Forsthofgut  Austria  www.forsthofgut.at/en 

Mindful Luxury in Croatia

Opening soon on the Croatian island of Hvar, surrounded by olive groves and terraced vineyards, is the Maslina Resort, a luxury mindful resort and Relais & Chateaux property.

Maslina Resort has 50 rooms and three villas and stretches across two hectares of pine forest overlooking the Adriatic Sea with wellbeing at its heart.

The Pharomatiq Spa Centre showcases a modern fitness room, relaxation areas and a dedicated aqua thermal area including a Finnish sauna, aromatherapy steam bath, Turkish hammam, and cold plunge pools.

Sound Healing:

Non-contact services include sound healing, beneficial for treating stress and anxiety and post-traumatic effects of this strenuous times.

Check out the  Maslina Resort 

Authentic Scottish Wilderness Experience

Opening in September,  The Treehouses at Lanrick consists of five luxury sustainable treehouses located in stunning woodland area on the banks of the River Teith in Perthshire. This secluded outpost creates an authentic Scottish wilderness experience, away from the distractions of a busy modern world.

This is a perfect off-grid location for those wanting to escape to nature, with stunning woodland and scenic river walks, biking, picnics, salmon and trout fishing available nearby. For those looking to explore, The Treehouses are located just four miles from the breathtaking Trossachs National Park, which offers mountain climbing, mountain biking, canoeing, wild swimming and boat trips on Loch Lomond. Doune Castle, Stirling Castle, Deanston Distillery are all within ten miles. The world renowned Gleneagles and Loch Lomond golf course are also a short distance away.

The Treehouses at Lanrick, Scotland, https://www.lanricktreehouses.co.uk/

Healing Through Horses

Equine therapy  is taking the reins in the world of wellness.

This transformational experience is becoming increasingly popular in the UK and worldwide. Even Hollywood stars Ben Affleck and singer Selina Gomez are among those who have sought equine therapy as part of a wider treatment programme.

Combining the power of healing through horses with the luxury, spacious setting of Casa de Campo Resort and Villas in the Dominican Republic, a unique and aptly named “Unbridled Retreat” will take place in April this year.

Equine gestalt coach and authentic horse listener, Devon Combs, has partnered with the Caribbean resort to offer a retreat for up to 12 women. Her aim is to help women find clarity and purpose through the healing power of horses in an environment designed to promote wellness, self-discovery and healing.  “I’ve experienced the healing power of horses first-hand. Now I bring women and horses together in a safe space where I teach people how to let go of self-sabotage and pick up the reins of their lives. I specialise in helping them get clear on where they’re headed, and find the courage to move forward in their lives.”

The Unbridled Retreat at Casa de Campo provides the ideal setting for the equestrian centre within its 7,000-acre resort. Dripping in Hollywood legacy and Hamptons luxury, Casa de Campo and its mansion villa homes have attracted A-list celebrities, politicians and royals for decades, recently including Jay-Z and Beyonce, the Kardashians, Drake, Alycia Keys and Bill Clinton.

The Unbridled Retreat takes place in April 2020.

For details on this equine therapy retreat: https://www.casadecampo.com.do/experiences/sports/equestrian/unbridled-equine-retreat/

Anti Ageing Clinic in Austria

Gender Medicine at la pura

gender medicine

Too much caffeine, the wrong type of exercise, deficient in omega oils or too stressed to do anything about it. How is your health? Is your lifestyle balanced? Is it time to make a few changes?

With the dawn of a new decade and trend-setting health analysis methods, I decided to put my health under the microscope using gender medicine and genetic evaluation. And where better than through a pioneering company where “healthy ageing” is the pinnacle objective. Such an approach is practised at la pura, (www.lapura.at), a dedicated resort for women, located in the healthy heartlands of rural Austria.

Gender Health

La pura offers innovative concepts for the prevention of specific conditions in women based on the latest findings in gender medicine, in cooperation with the Medical University of Vienna. Diagnostic testing individualises relevant ageing subjects and tackles them in a scientific way, based on epigenetics. This scientific field differentiates between the (static) genome and an epigenome, which can be altered dynamically by biological, mental and social factors. In other words, the ageing process can be influenced preventively in a timely manner and used to actively and consciously shape the path of the future. At la pura, the epigenetic risk factors of each woman are determined comprehensively using modern diagnostic methods which can individually determine a woman‘s biological age and focus on any potential weak points. There are coordinated therapies and medical treatments, including some for home application, for any weak points that are discovered. The testing covers lifestyle and mental balance, exercise and nutrition to supplementation and hormone replacement.

It is recommended that testing is done before a stay at la pura. A test kit is sent in advance. It’s quick to do, a few painless pin pricks from the fingertips for several blood samples, hygienically and safely sealed and then whizzed off to a specialist hospital laboratory in Austria.  

After 3-4 weeks, the results are in. They are returned in the form of a detailed personal report, colourful graphs, medical terminology which is mind boggling at first, but becomes clear after a few reads. The report provides personal feedback in lifestyle routines, habits, exercise, anxiety levels, nutrition and metabolism. What’s more, it is designed just for you based on your own blood sample.

A one-to-one telephone call is scheduled to discuss the results in detail which takes around an hour. However, it is essential to read and digest the data first to gain some understanding of the principles of the evaluation and to grasp the meaning so as to be able to make lifestyle changes.

There are several types of tests offered, each valuable to anyone who places wellness as a top priority. I opted for the Metabolic Health Panel. This test covers three principles: nutrigenomics which includes DNA and nutrition, genes and how they are regulated, and personalised nutrition. The Metabolic Health Panel reveals your metabolic and genetic types and characters.

Nutrigenomics

Nutrigenomics is the research into the interaction between genes and nutrition for long-term individual nutritional recommendations. We all express our genes in a unique way, which influences the functions of the metabolism. We differ strongly in metabolic capacities as individuals. Depending on our genetic conditions, there are significant differences in our need for macronutrients (proteins, fats, carbohydrates) and micronutrients (vitamins, nutrients, trace minerals). External factors such as the environment as well as our internal workings greatly affect the rate of influence of methylation on metabolism and other areas of our body. Our diet has a strong influence on our gene regulation (epigenetics).

Genes

Genes are sections of our DNA where the blueprint for proteins is located. Small deviations in the sequence of these main building blocks within a gene can affect the function of protein. Inherited or randomly formed, these remain for life. Epigenetics accounts for the mechanisms of gene regulation that can be influenced by environmental factors, diet, and lifestyle. With a change in one’s lifestyle (diet, exercise, and stress levels), gene activity can be increased and decreased.

Personalised Nutrition

Through the analysis of twenty-three gene variants (SNPs) and various epigenetic markers the test determines your metabolic type. There are four types:

Carbohydrate Type: Carbohydrates are metabolised well but there are difficulties in digesting protein and fat.

Fat Type: Fat is metabolized well, a desired weight can be achieved with the right intake and lipid composition in the diet.

Protein Type: Proteins are digested well so weight loss can be achieved with protein rich foods.

Balanced Type: All three macronutrients (carbohydrates, fats, and proteins) are equally well metabolized.

SNPs are evaluated individually and contribute to your personalized nutritional recommendations. The results offer indications on how to lose or gain weight according to your individual body type. How to attain a stabilized, healthy body weight through modulation of macronutrient intake, and by incorporating specific types and durations of exercise. This forms the basis for your individual personalised nutrition.

Genetics and Exercise: Which Exercise Type Are You?

Exercise is essential for all of us. However, the type of exercise to benefit you is dependent on genetics. Endurance sports may good for some, while others are better suited to and will gain greater health benefits from strength training or a combination of both.

By assessing the variations of genes, the analysis is able to assign appropriate and effective exercise programme suited to your body type. The test evaluates how physical movement effects your body weight.

Preventative Health

A genetic health report also can provide a prediction of your genetic risk for diabetes and obesity and provide a future lifestyle plan to avoid major problems in the short and long term.

Results

My report has guided me in adjusting my lifestyle habits and routines.  Being designated as a carbohydrate type, I am now mindful of the nutritional values of this food group, buckwheat, quinoa and rice and to the importance of including the outer shells of grains, as well as the proportion of proteins I need to include.  Complex carbohydrates are absorbed more slowly, provide more energy, and contain more vitamins. The quality of fats was highlighted (linseed oil highly recommended) as was the need to increase my intake of fish oils (omega 6). My body type also benefits from fasting intervals to give time to regenerate. Water consumption needs to be topped up to two litres. If I choose to reduce weight, exercise would not do the trick, my only option is to reduce my food calorie intake. But of course, exercise is important to mind and body. Endurance & strength are my recommended exercise – so here’s to Nordic walking, biking, jogging and swimming as well as weight bearing programme at my local gym.

My lifestyle, hooray, is balanced but I am warned to watch stress levels. My analysis revealed a few dodgy genes which of course I am unable to change but through this detailed report I can help to strengthen the good genes to counteract negative effects. We are not all perfect!

Identifying your own biological make-up, understanding how your body works and the red alert signs help you to feel more in control and at one with the workings of your own body. You become more aware of external factors reacting to your own system.

Ageing Well

I’m on track to a healthier decade. My genes defined and the tweaks to my lifestyle habits and routine slowly integrated.  How about you?

The Geneometry Metabolic Health is priced at EUR 390

To find out more about metabolic testing, contact www.lapura.at

Click here for more wellness anti ageing clinics

Healthy Ageing in Austria

Gender Medicine at la pura

gender medicine

Would you like to know your biological age, your allergies, your health forecast? La pura in the Waldviertel region of Austria is a dedicated healthy ageing resort designed exclusively for women.

More than a wellness hotel, the focus at la pura is on slowing the biological clock with treatments formulated to outsmart time. According to research, our age is determined 30 per cent by genetics, the remainder up to us to manage by our lifestyle choices and habits, good or bad. The resort attracts those who want to understand their make-up, identify and change negative lifestyle habits. The emphasis is not on anti but on healthy ageing by embracing and enhancing life‘s journey, not battling against it.

The theory is based on female-specific gender medicine developed by Dr Alexandra Kautzky-Willer of the Medical University of Vienna and healthy ageing programmes managed by Medical Director, Dr Sabine Froehlich, at la pura.  Based on science and proven evidence, ageing topics are individualised and addressed with innovative and sustainable solutions. Results not only determine the biological age, but highlight weak areas and risk factors.

There is a wide range of treatments and programmes which are custom-made and based on diagnostic tests and medical consultations, all in the name of aging gracefully.  Genetic testing tackles pre-dispositions and age-related diseases. A 3D skin analysis scans the skin to reveal collagen loss, sun damage and age. A saliva test detects silent inflammations in the body. Others include testing metabolic function and individual macronutrient needs leading to weight stability and management.  If stress is a factor, there’s mental counselling and relaxing treatments.

Originally built in 1914 as a mansion house, today it stands as a spacious health retreat with 85 guestrooms classically decorated. The Boccaccaio room, a former theatre, is the social heart where afternoon tea is served daily and the host for organised entertainment – a pianist, wine tasting or make-up workshop. Relaxed and  friendly, it’s a space for guests to share their experiences. Just over an hour from Vienna, the retreat lies in the Kamptal valley, with a river running by and a castle silhouette overhead.

The spa includes a choice of saunas, steam rooms & an infra-red cabin. Little exfoliating peeling cups are available, flavoured with mango, vanilla, or even chocolate – a refreshing touch.  And around every corner, relaxation areas appear in different modes, quiet rooms, warmed loungers, alcoves around the indoor pool and outdoor decks.

Prevention is a key component of healthy ageing.  Chinese traditional medicine is practised here as well as natural therapies such as underwater extension therapy, effective for tensions and misaligned sections of the spinal cord. “Healthy Ageing Therapy” is a revitalising manual massage using vaporised herb pouches and warm aromatic oils, individually created. Think almond and sesame oils, together with herbal mixtures of ginger, elderflower, mint and ivy.

Ad hoc botox and fillers are frowned upon. Here cosmetic and aesthetic medicine is based on the results of a Visia Scan, which detects the collagen levels, the depth of lines and wrinkles and the sun damage from which digital results calculate facial age. This test is a scientific qualifier for future and effective treatments which may take the form of thread lifting, fillers or skin rejuvenation with mesotherapy – a vitamin cocktail. A personalised serum is formulated for your skin’s requirements. For arms, legs and abdomens, the aesthetic body treatments target fat cells using suction-wave massage, reducing them via the lymphatic system, followed by an ultrasound and agent treatment to activate a fat-burning process.

Food is an integral part of a stay. The FX Mayr nutritional programme is a popular treatment to detox the intestines and improve digestion. It involves a different approach to eating and appreciating food intake.  Guests following this dine away from temptation in a separate dining room. And to maintain these culinary virtues and encourage diet lifestyle changes, cookery classes are held regularly in the show kitchen.

Guests can follow a low-calorie menu or for those wishing to indulge, dinner is a 4-course affair. Yellow turnip coconut foam soup and salmon with lukewarm orange fennel salad are examples of the creative dishes served.  Breakfast is ultra- healthy with warm millet porridge, spelt pancakes and vegan bircher served with an edible flower garnish – all too good to eat!  The restaurant spills outside, overlooking the square, a peak into everyday life in this sleepy town, known for its singer-song writer, Falco. His monument ornaments the local park.

Classes and activities for mind and body can fill your day with maybe a few new experiences thrown in. Smovey walking is trending – a one up-man-ship on Nordic walking. It involves weighted hand accessories while walking through the park and climbing through the forested area. These bright green loops help with posture and joint mobility and coordination. Along with yoga, a staple in spa resorts, classes include balance, endurance and spine care exercises. The sling workout involves muscle strengthening using ropes to stabilise the body. Days at la pura are interesting, sociable and as busy as you want them to be, including a dip in the River Kamp.

La pura offers that ray of hope to women battling with healthy ageing.It is a place to relax and to find a personalised formula to slow down the ticking clock, inside and out. A wrinkle and a wobble less, a stronger mind, a body and soul in harmony and acceptance.La pura serves a recipe that is effective, holistic and individual – a sustainable form of health prevention and healthy ageing.

la pura women’s health resort kamptal
Hauptplatz 58, 3571 Gars am Kamp, Austria
Tel.: 
+43 2985/26 66-741
Fax.: +43 2985/26 66-745
Mail: 
willkommen@lapura.at or reservierung@lapura.at

The packages:

https://www.lapura.at/en/health/healthy-aging/

https://www.lapura.at/en/health/detox/

The editor was a guest of la pura.

A Wellness Community on Water

Luxury Wellness Onboard

The wellness real estate sector has been valued as a $134 billion global industry in 2017 by the Global Wellness Institute, with a projected growth to $198 billion by 2022.  Blue World Voyages, the world’s first cruise concept dedicated to active healthy lifestyles, is a player in this sizeable industry and has announced 40 Owners Residences onboard their first vessel, which launches in 2021.

Wellness lifestyle real estate is defined as a home which has been proactively designed and built to support the holistic health of its residents. Blue World Voyages’ Owners Residences will now offer this. The team have crafted a vessel and itinerary which is centred around wellness in all its forms, from the physical and social aspects to the emotional and intellectual dimensions. Owners can benefit from being part of this wellness community on water.

Those purchasing a Residence will have access to the ship’s two floors. which are solely focused around sports and wellness. They will offer a variety of state-of-the-art facilities which are unapparelled at sea. These range from a functional training & strength conditioning centre, golf & football stimulators, various fitness studios for classes such as yoga and spinning, and a sea-water lap pool which enables guests to do their laps in the ocean. Owners will also be able to take part in a range of active programming both onboard and ashore.  Land excursions will offer everything from cycling in Castellon (Spain) and surfing in Lisbon (Portugal), to horse riding in Cherbourg (France) and learning Tai Chi in Amsterdam (Netherlands). There will also be a dedicated team of experts and specialists onboard to offer tailored advice and personal programming as well as hosting talks on their fields of interest.

The ship’s interiors, from public spaces and guest suites, to the Owners Residences, have been designed and styled by top marine design architects, Tomas Tillberg International and acclaimed interior design firm Juan Poggi Designs. Owners are free to use their property as frequently as they wish, enabling them to travel the world and live in one of the healthiest environments possible. The vessel will be home to 40 one and two bedroom Residences, priced at £1,790,000 and £2,557,000 respectively.

Our surroundings and communities directly affect our daily lifestyles and have an impact on our health. Blue World Voyages believe that our homes, our most important personal investment, should also be a positive investment in our health and wellbeing.

Contact the editor@thehealthcareholiday.comif you have an interest in the sale of these luxury floating Residences.

For more information on Blue World Voyages, read here

Wellness is on a high with light-headed therapy

CBD added to tea

Dope, no, Cannabis-based therapy, yes.  Wellness is trending towards therapeutic drugs.

One day its Tumeric lattes, now CBD treatments are all the rage advocated by Jennifer Aniston and, of course Gywneth Paltrow. CBD or cannabidiol is a natural ingredient, extracted from agricultural hemp. It can be added to many a spa treatment, laced in chocolate, packaged as a spray for your bag and purchased over the counter in Harrods as well as other stores.

A derivative of the marijuana plant, CBD oil is legal in the UK as long as it does not contain more than 0.2% of THC, the crucial component that gives cannabis its psychotic effects. Cannabis can be divided into three sectors – recreational, medical and wellness. The latter is the most widely available through products that use CBD oil, a product that does not make users high. Today it is used in beauty products and dietary supplements.

Since becoming legal in the UK last year, it is popping up everywhere. Raw, CBD reportedly is bitter so adding it to products helps. You can nibble on CBD petit fours – try cannabis and grapefruit marshmallows and a Green Monkey soft drink.  It’s a key ingredient of salads and cakes served in a Brighton restaurant which offers a full menu of CBD dishes. There are Wellness Cafes in London such as Kalifornia Kitchen. And check out your shakes and juices, chocolate and mints all rumoured to have therapeutic effects with this “wonder“ingredient.

CBD is one of at least 85 cannabinoid compounds found in cannabis and is popular for its medicinal benefits.  These include the antioxidants within CBD which help to neutralise free radicals and treat signs of ageing. Scientists believe its anti-inflammatory properties can calm inflamed acne. The fatty acids within CBD can soothe itching and inflammation from eczema and psoriasis by combating the excessive water loss of the conditions. Other reported benefits of CBD include pain relief, reducing anxiety and depression and improving cognitive function and memory.

With so many benefits, this natural oil is appealing to those who care about what they eat, drink or apply to their skin. Now that we have climbed out of the cannabis closet we can look forward to high afternoon teas with cannabis chocolate brownies which will give more than a sugar rush. But of course we need to follow the weed etiquette which is now available. CBD is a natural way to wind down, a calorie free option to replace  alcoholic and calorific effects of a glass or two of wine, a soothing way to relax physically and mentally. It’s a form of meditation and a catalyst for creativity. But as is the norm, good things come with a warning – inhaling CBD be harmful to lungs and some edibles can be poisonous.

Rudding Park in Harrogate is one of the first spas in the UK to introduce a range of treatments using Cannabidiol products. The hotel and spa has collaborated with MariPharm, a supplier of high quality CBD products, to create a range of experiences which could assist with pain relief, promote anti-ageing, reduce anxiety and depression and support overall positive mental health. All MariPharm products are of pharmaceutical grade and are produced using a unique extraction process, guaranteeing the highest quality at all times.

Outside the UK, the effects are more heady. Welcome to Medical Marijuana. Last year Canada became the second country to legalise recreational marijuana. America’s Colorado, Florida and California have relaxed laws but consuming weed for pleasure is still illegal. Brands are jumping on the bandwagon to cater to a discerning wellness cannabis scene. Marijuana which contains the psychoactive THC and CBD, the non-intoxicating compound derived from the cannabis plant is now becoming part of a wellness lifestyle. According to the California Dept of Public Health cannabis can only be purchased at retail outlets licensed by the California Bureau of Cannabis Control. The city of West Hollywood has licences for upscale cannabis lounges – around Sunset Strip and Santa Monica Boulevard.

Read here for medicinal plants

Bhutan The Land of Happiness

Elevated Kingdom of Bhutan

Bhutan

There is a place in the world where the wealth of the country is measured by happiness.  Squeezed between the mighty neighbours of China and India there lies this place – a Land of Happiness.

The tiny kingdom of Bhutan sits peacefully and snuggly amongst the majestic amphitheatre of the Himalayas. This remote place cuddles culture and adventure in its unspoilt and unexplored environment. Stemming from its Buddhist tradition, it has inherited the title of a spiritual and happy destination. Back in the eighth century, the tantric master guru Rinpoche brought Buddhism to Bhutan. Many others masters followed resulting in a plethora of monasteries, temples and holy sites., Bhutan is often quoted as being one of the most blessed places to visit and is the last existing Mahayana Kingdom in the world.

Healthy and holy. The kingdom  is dotted with wellbeing retreats and therapeutic, mineral-laden hot springs. The Gasa Hot Spring is in the west, Dhur Hotel Spring in the centre and Dhuenmang in the south are highly revered medicinal waters and believed to cure many ailments. Traditional Bhutanese medicine is based on Sowa Rigpa,known as the Amchi system of medicine which is one of the oldest and well documented medical traditions of the world.

Bhutan’s elevated natural surroundings are often laced in transparent mist,  oxygenated in unpolluted air. Glacier-fed rivers and lush, aromatic forests provide the ideal terrain for hiking, trekking, kayaking and mountain biking activities. And with over 670 species of birds recorded, this is a favoured destination for bird lovers and ornithologists.

Happiness and harmony weave through the land’s rich and colourful culture expressed through traditional festivals and acrobatic mask dance performances which celebrate the kingdom’s independence and sovereignty.

Almost cut off for centuries, Bhutan unlocked its doors to foreign visitors in 1974 and today fiercely guard its ancient traditions by controlling tourism numbers to maintains its beauty and serenity for its own people and visitors alike. National parks, nature preserves and wildlife sanctuaries are protected and cherished – visitors pay a fee for the honour of entering this kingdom rooted in happiness.

Dating back to the 17thcentury, Bhutan is a recognised wellbeing escape.  This is the land where happiness is measured and is rooted in  Gross National Happiness (GNH). This grandiose term is defined as a holistic and sustainable approach which balances material and non-material values with the conviction that we all search for happiness.

GNH confronts global, national and individual challenges by pointing to the non-material roots of wellbeing, offering ways to balance and satisfy needs within the limits of what nature can provide. In our world, this is hindered by boundless consumerism, widening socio-economic inequality and instability causing a decline and ultimately a depletion of natural resources. Climate change, species extinction, growing insecurity, instability and conflicts are not only diminishing our well-being but are also threatening our survival.

Bhutan’s Gross National Happiness is based on four pillars of belief. Firstly, good governance which determines the conditions and social values in which Bhutanese thrive. Secondly, sustaining socio-economic development to ensure households and families enjoy free time and leisure. Thirdly, preserving the Bhutanese culture by developing cultural resilience, maintaining cultural identity, knowledge and practices to overcome challenges and influences. Fourthly, environmental conservation to provide essential services and the aesthetic values and harmonic healing of the natural land.

Happiness is the foundation of the Kingdom of Bhutan so if you are looking for a destination and a land of happiness, you will find it here tucked away in South Asia.

Visas are necessary to help preserve the kingdom’s pillars of belief to maintain Gross National Happiness. A small price to pay to hear the silence in nature’s sound, to breathe the purity of the air and absorb the vivid colours and of course share the genuine smiles of the people. Happiness is …..

If you wish to travel to the land of happiness contact http://www.bhutanlhtours.com/

For more information: https://www.tourism.gov.bt

The scenic vistas of Bhutan

Scenery of Bhutan

Soma Manaltheeram Ayurveda Beach Village

cottage style accommodation

Natural village setting

Soma Manaltheeram Ayurveda Beach Village is a healing and wellness resort dedicated to the “Science of Life” to restore physical, mental, spiritual and emotional equilibrium.

It is conveniently situated 21 kilometers from Thiruvananthapuram International Airport in Kerala and 9 kms from Kovalam. Majestically, it sits on the incline of a hill overlooking the sea.

This award-winning resort and sister property to Somatheeram Research Institute & Ayurveda Resort offers authentic ayurveda treatments, yoga and meditation tailored to guests needs. And with specially prescribed massages and therapies, Manaltheeram offers therapies  effective in treating various conditions such as arthritis, rheumatism and paralysis.

Accommodation is rustic-style houses and thatched garden cottages resting on the slopes giving the atmosphere of  village life embracing tradition, culture and nature. The coconut trees dotted around and splashes of yellow marigolds add colour and the concept of rejuvenation to this eco-resort.  In addition, the herb garden cultivates rare varieties preserved for use in medicines and other preparations. The open air restaurant at Manaltheeram Ayurveda Beach Village maintains a garden ambience with its wicker chairs, lawns and paved paths.

The  resort offers Ayurveda residential holistic programmes for “Panchakarma” and “Wellness” , all supported by a team of Ayurvedic doctors and mail & female masseurs to provide the best result in shortest time.

For reservations or more information on Manaltheeram Ayurveda Beach Village http://www.manaltheeram.com/

For more information on India, read here

yoga next to the sea

Perfect setting for yoga

 

 

Somatheeram Ayurveda Village, Kerala, India 

The pool

Somatheeram Ayurveda Village

Somatheeram, is the world’s first Ayurveda centre set in a resort ambiance offering Ayurveda treatments and programmes for its guests who travel from all corners of the world.

This award winning Ayurveda wellness eco resort is set in tropical gardens and enjoys a beachfront location in  Kerala, South India. It is located on Chowara Beach with over 15 acres of greenery, just 9 km south of Kovalam Beach in Trivandrum, Kerala.

In this peaceful and harmonious environment traditional ayurvedic therapy and yoga are practised. The range of Ayurveda treatments and packages include rejuvenation therapy, panchakarma, detoxification, body purification, slimming, stress management, anti-ageing, and various clinical curative treatments. The treatments are designed around therapies, a healing diet and herbal medicine, formulated under the supervision of experienced and qualified doctors and therapists.

Dosha-specific, organic, vegetarian dishes from an extensive, creative menu are served in the restaurant 200 feet above sea level complemented with superb panoramic views.

Accommodation takes the form of traditionally Kerala-style houses and cottages, all air-conditioned and equipped with modern amenities.

Somatheeram is internationally recognised for its achievements in health, social responsibility and  environmental preservation. It is the recipient of 35 major international and national awards for excellence in  Ayurveda treatments & Yoga. Of note, it holds NABH (National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Health Care providers) accreditation,  “India’s Best Ayurvedic Resort”, including “HALL OF FAME” an Honour granted by the Government of India.  It has also been awarded “Kerala State’s Best Ayurvedic Resort” (by Government of Kerala) six times.

The essence and soul of Somatheeram is the ancient medical science of Ayurveda treatments  and Art of Yoga & Meditation.

For reservation or more information: http://www.somatheeram.in/

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BSI accredited

Accredited status

Eco Wellness In A UNESCO World Heritage Setting

 

….Wellbeing in tune with nature’s life forces….

Ecological Wellness can be found in the heart of the majestic Sahyadris mountain range in the Western Ghats of Maharastra: a UNESCO World Heritage Site, offering holistic rejuvenation of mind, body and soul according to ancient Ayurvedic principles.

Dharana at Shillim Estate Retreat and Spa  is an eco-wellness retreat, three hours south east of Mumbai or just over two hours from Pune. It sweeps over 3,000 acres of its own fertile valley, scattered with ecologically-designed luxurious villas, with a focus on environmental sustainability. Guests are encouraged to take short excursions, hikes and nature walks through the rice fields, bamboo plantations, lush fields and organic garden which all nurture a thriving flora and fauna eco system.

At the heart of the retreat is a philosophy of ‘Dharana’ (pronounced Dah-na) – a way of life that promotes health and wellbeing in line with the life forces of nature.  Dharana is the sacred sense of stability achieved when one aligns the inner core to the outer environment, the starting point for any form of healing.

The Dharana way of life aims to help achieve long-term internal and external wellbeing through tailor-made programmes, helping guests to choose lifestyle options that balance energies and focused on achieving calmness and contentedness.

Shillim’s extensive range of wellness programmes are all designed to help guests establish healthy habits for life. Dharana wellness experts integrate the essential philosophical, spiritual and artistic wisdom of past civilizations with contemporary, life-enhancing practices and modern diagnostics.

Dharana Life Science Programs offer a comprehensive, bespoke healing regime with deliberate attention to key issues including conflict resolution, stress management, anti-aging, weight management which focusing on fitness through wellness activities and cognitive stimulation, mindfulness through meditation and nourishment through sustainability. A consultation is offered to every guest by resident Dr. Arun Pillai, who curates a bespoke programme dependent on guest’s needs – ranging from three to 27-day schedules. The itinerary encompasses Dharana traditions including Acupressure, Acupuncture, Reiki, Pranic Healing, Ayurveda, Yoga, Chakra Cleansing, Shamanism, Meditation, Naturopathy, Hydro Therapy, Ozone Therapy, Fire Healing, Music, Dance and Body Work.

Dr. Arun Pillai, Director of Wellness says, “We focus on the five core elements (earth, fire, water, air and sky) to design the Dharana programme.  The programme starts with a full body composition analysis to determine the prakruti (nature/issues) and identify the doshas (the three energies that define every person’s makeup) of our guests. We aim to make Dharana as a way of life and not just a programme so that all our guests can sustain a healthy lifestyle and lead the ideal wellness path within and outside the retreat” 

Nourishment through Sustainability: The holistic approach of the Dharana programme is folded into every aspect of the retreat, especially at the wellness restaurant – The Green Table – which takes inspiration from a planetary diet, incorporating the five elements of Ayurveda (Water, Air, Fire, Ether and Wind), with special emphasis on organic ingredients.  The menu is a 100% forest-to-table concept with all ingredients sourced from the Shillim forest and farm. The Chef’s commitment in using organic, locally-sourced and sustainably-grown ingredients of the highest quality is apparent in every dish served from the Ayurveda Thali to the à la carte selection. Healthy offerings at The Green Table can be complimented with an aromatic treat at the Tea Room, emphasizing the medicinal properties of different ingredients and illustrating the ancient Asian culture of healing.

Getting there from the UK

Direct flights go from both London and Manchester to Mumbai approx. 9 hours, plus 3.25 hour road transfer, or indirect flight to Pune, approximately 12.5 hours with a stop-over in Delhi or Abu Dhabi followed by a 2.5 hour road transfer.

https://www.shillim.in/