5 wellness retreats to find your zen

These days hotels need to do more than just pamper you, today with wellness and self-care becoming increasingly important to luxury travellers when aboard, hotels need to be equipped to enrich and maintain a well and healthy lifestyle. These are our favourite hotels where wellness is ingrained in their ethos, hotels that you come away from feeling rejuvenated or even transformed in some way. Read on to discover our pick of luxury wellness retreats.

Chablé Resort & Spa, Mexico

If you’re worried that going on a retreat means sentencing yourself to nothing but yoga and raw food, think again. This lush resort within a modernised 19th-century hacienda in Mexico’s myth-rich Yucatan manages to achieve the perfect equilibrium between wellness haven and indulgent escape. Choose between Temazcal ceremonies or premium Tequila tastings; recline in the spa formed around a natural azure-hued cenote, or unwind in the cigar lounge; mediate every morning in your lavish villa, or find your zen on the white sand beaches of Celestun, alongside flocks of flamboyant flamingos. It’s all of Mexico’s best bits in microcosm.

Santani, Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is fast becoming one of the hottest wellness meccas and this eco-retreat is raising the bar. It’s just moments from the island’s spiritual centre, Kandy, but still retains a blissfully secluded position tickling the clouds in the jungle-clad Knuckles Mountains. But it’s the chic, minimal design and dedicated ayurvedic wellness programs (the first in the country) that really elevates the experience. Wellbeing also extends to the kitchen of the glasshouse restaurant, where you can savour delicious raw, vegan or ayurvedic-approved fare whilst looking out over the tree-tops sipping a biodynamic wine. This is a next-gen wellness retreat.

La Selva Eco-Lodge, Ecuador

You arrive by canoe, floating past monkeys, tapirs and giant otters, to find 19 luxurious bamboo-built suites waiting for you in the heart of the Ecuadorian Amazon – and the tone is set for your wellness retreat. La Selva is a sustainable lake-side eco-retreat that has brilliantly re-imagined the concept of an amazon spa retreat and is the perfect setting for both unwinding and uncovering the secrets of the unique Amazonian wildlife. Spend days pampering, hiking and canoeing, and nights taking in the unbelievable stars.

Nekupe Resort, Nicaragua

The five unique villas that make up this retreat set within a 1,300-acre nature reserve are all filled with an edit of sustainable furnishings and local artisan designs. The perfect base for you to then fill your lungs with the fresh mountain air horse-riding or enjoying some mountaintop yoga. Or if you prefer a slower pace, nourish your taste buds with a lesson in organic gardening and cooking. All against the soul-inspiring backdrop of Nicaragua’s remote countryside.

Amandari, Bali

Bali has long cemented itself as a wellness destination. A place where incense fragrances the air and shrines pepper mountainsides lush with swaying palms. And there’s nowhere better to hole-up in this spiritual capital than Amandari. Meaning ‘Peaceful Spirit’, its five pavilions perch on sacred ground 129 steps above a Hindu shrine encircled by rice fields and offers a masterclass in holistic living. Try guided meditation soundtracked by the soft flow of the Ayung River and Balinese massages and treatments to soothe both limb and mind.

Tom Marchant is Co-founder of Black Tomato. Black Tomato is an award-winning luxury travel agent and part of The Black Tomato Group, with partner brands including Studio Black Tomato, The Black Tomato Agency and Epic Tomato.

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Comments (2)

  1. Cathy T says:

    A retreat with tequila tastings sounds just up my street and more my idea of relaxing. Chamble sounds like the perfect place to try Mexico out. I also love the sound of le selva for getting in touch with nature. Being surrounded by wildlife like that must be so relaxing and good for your soul. I think I would have trouble leaving when it is time to go home.

  2. Carolyn says:

    I think one of the reasons why these hotels, temples to calm and serenity, are flourishing is that we need them. So many of us are “time poor”.

    What is so great about these places is that they remind of us other cultures and civilisations – I doubt that ancient peoples in Sri Lanka, Bali or Ecuador had agendas and plans.

    When I visit a place like this I even take something from the minimalist decor. As soon as I get back I declutter and see my own home in a new light.

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