Kerala, is one of India’s most visited tourist destinations. The land of ayurvedic massages, tranquil backwaters and delicious vegetarian south Indian specialties, it has now also acquired the tag of being a “wellness destination”.
Kerala’s Backwaters Now Turning into a Spa Paradise
Kerala, is one of India’s most visited tourist destinations. The land of ayurvedic massages, tranquil backwaters and delicious vegetarian south Indian specialties, it has now also acquired the tag of being a “wellness destination”. Promoted as “god’s own country”, it is indeed the perfect place to do some soul searching, indulging in quiet time, meditation, yoga and therapies for the body-mind-soul.
With its abundance of scenic beauty with tranquil waters, beach fronts, jungles and green cover, excellent weather and a peace loving local population it has a large number of what is called “repeat travellers” who visit once and then keep returning to experience the Kerala magic.
Tapping into this emerging trend are leading names from the hospitality industry who are setting up specialised centres and resorts. Vivanta by Taj – Bekal, is the latest offering of the Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces. Positioned strategically along the picturesque palmfringed backwaters in Bekal in North Kerala, the 25-acre property’s highlight is the Jiva Grande Spa which is one of India’s leading and fast expanding spa chains rooted in the rich and ancient wellness traditions of India.
An elaborate spa menu that is customised to suit individual needs Each spa experience is carefully put together to create physical, mental and spiritual equilibrium. From a selection of ayurveda programmes, aromatherapies, scrubs and wraps, and beauty rituals, the ayurveda experts will design a regimen based on the individual’s body type and other relevant indicators. The specially created Alepa and Abhisheka pavilions provide body anointment and purifying bathing ceremonies in addition to Ritualistic Fire Ceremonies (Homams) ayus and arogya (life longevity and health) therapies that are done in harmony with the chanting by the spa’s resident priest.
Spread over 165,000 sq feet, the interiors are soothing and aesthetic, infused with energy and harmony, promising to restore the body’s balance. Incorporating a natural and minimalist décor, one can spot sinuous curved designs and elements of Vastu, the traditional Indian science of space planning that ensures prosperity, good health and peace of mind. The spa design also embraces water bodies for their calming visual effect set against lushgreen pockets of greenery.
Perfectly aligned spaces that ensure a fulfilling experience
A lot of thought has gone into planning the spa. It has single and double treatment suites, beauty treatment rooms, meditation pavilions, yoga studio, relaxation and vitality pools, dedicated wet area experiences along with a fully-equipped gym and beauty salon. All treatment rooms have their own private courtyards for post-treatment relaxation, with each courtyard having its own serene water gardens that are landscaped keeping in mind the tropical climate.
The Ayurveda sanctuary is stark and in line with the traditional satvik (simple and austere) style. It has a dining lounge, courtyards, landscaped relaxation spaces and meditation nooks, a full-fledged wellness library and water bodies.
Detox the body of every-day toxins
For those wanting to add a detox element which is highly recommended given the junk food that city-bred folks consume, apart from alcohol and other non vegetarian food, there is the Panchkarma, a unique treatment in Ayurveda with five purificatory procedures that initiate cleansing and removal of toxins from the body. These are intensive treatments that are performed under medical guidance. What makes the programme even more meaningful is the series of consultations and counselling sessions that are given to the client by the Ayurveda doctors, helping identify problems and warning signs before providing a roadmap for relief and recovery. The ayurveda doctors make a clear mention that clients need not discontinue with their conventional treatment. The Jiva range of therapies and treatments are to be followed in addition to their ongoing treatment.
Whether you check into the Jiva spa at Kerala or attend one of their wellness programmes, its time to make a date with the ayurvedic school of healing and experienced a fresh bout of energy and good health.
Super summer beauty tips from Alila Living
Alila Living – Avocado & Coconut Hair Smoothie Perfect for reviving sun damaged or dry hair
Healthy hair begins with a healthy scalp. But, occasionally the trials of everyday life, normal, daily occupational stress and ambient air pollution, can easily put our hair and scalp out of balance. This is why Alila has created the Alila Livings Avocado & Coconut Hair Smoothie, an earthy, grounding, herbal concoction designed to help repair all that you do to your hair. Loaded with aloe vera juice, avocado oil; legundi extract & wild honey; shea butter & tamarind extract; this Hair Smoothie will surely nourish your hair back to life.
Alila Living – Cucumber & Aloe Facial Cleanse Be gentle and kind to sun kissed skin
One of the most important parts of maintaining healthy skin is thorough cleansing. An effective cleanser should remove excess oil, perspiration, dirt, dust, pollution, make-up and dead skin cells from the surface of your skin as well as, from the skins’ pores, but should be gentle enough as not to strip the skin of its natural oils. This facial cleanser was designed to do just that. This cleanser is a delightfully-fresh, cooling, calming blend that is a welcome treat anytime of the day. A perfect, pick-me-up synergy of lavender, lemon and cucumber seed oils in a soothing aloe vera juice base.
Alila Living – Indian Fig Dream Cream Nourish your skin so beautiful faces can go places
Alila Living’s Indian Fig Finishing Cream is a very effective moisturizing cream with excellent repairing, antioxidant & anti-aging properties. The star ingredient, Tamarind (aka Indian fig), is rich in organic acids such as alpha hydroxy, tartaric, ditric and malic. Tamarind is an excellent antifreckle and anti-aging remedy as well. Pure vanilla extract is comforting, warming and gently stimulating; a premiere aphrodisiac. To this they add the rare and very incredible brown lavender absolute. A touch of patchouli oil anchors it all in. Soft as silk, the cream containing pure aloe vera juice, coupled with a rich blend of exotic oils such as kukui nut, jojoba and african shea tree butter. For an extra cool summer treat, keep it in the fridge and get ready to be refreshed.
In association with Healing Hotels of the World we bring 5 unique Wellness Experiences from Switzerland, Kenya, Bali, Ecuador & Italy. Healing Hotels of the World is the global brand for the leading hotels and resorts with focus on holistic health and wellbeing.
Clinique La Prairie, Switzerland
Clinique La Prairie, one of the world’s most exclusive clinics,
is tucked away in the idyllic lakeside town of Montreux. It is traditionally known for its revitalization treatment, a revolutionary approach to boosting the immune system and effectively slowing down the ageing process.
The Clinique La Prairie’s Revitalization can be applied from the age of 40, with results lasting for one to two years. It helps increase youthfulness by revitalizing the body in depth. For people under great stress or intense workloads, it can be applied before the age of 40 as well. You will undergo a thorough medical evaluation followed by your Revitalization. Revitalization programme is done under the supervision of a physician and a personalized review is conducted.
An extensive range of medical services, beauty and Spa treatments are also offered. The clinic’s philosophy is to acknowledge the needs of the individual, offering a holistic approach to health combined with an exceptional level of personalized service in a nurturing and luxurious environment.
The Sleeping Warrior Lodge & Camp, Kenya
The unique beauty and peace of the Sleeping Warrior Lodge make it an ideal location for a wellness retreat. Their team of experienced professionals led by manager Jacqueline Damon will give you the tools to improve your health and wellness for the long term while you soak in the splendor of Soysambu Conservancy, a 49,000 acre private conservancy to which the guests have exclusive access.
On top of the hill stands the stone-built reception, lounge and dining room, below which is a stone terrace with fire-pit, a safari bar and extensive landscaped gardens. Their unique Sleeping Warrior Weight Loss program includes consultation with a dietician who will highlight the best diet to achieve your weight loss targets as well as provide you with information for long term healthy eating.
Sukhavati Ayurvedic Retreat & Spa, Bali
Sukhavati is located in a pristine rainforest on the river in Bebengan, Bali. An exclusive villa estate, Sukhavati provides a comprehensive wellness program utilizing traditional Ayurveda. Sukhavati combines luxury and service with the science and art of the world’s best practice in diagnosis and healing through Ayurvedic treatments given with the love that is so unique to the Balinese people.
Sukhavati has developed a unique all inclusive Ayurvedic Rejuvenation Program combining revitalizing Ayurvedic therapies, diet, yoga and meditation to help bring balance, energy and peace to your entire being.
Their Signature package is the 14 Day Deep Healing Program, an ideal treatment time to deeply reverse the trends of past lifestyle habits and take a quantum shift in your wellbeing, energy and clarity of mind. The program includes stay in their private luxury villa, an Ayurvedic consultation and outline of your personal rejuvenation program along with a follow up consultation throughout your stay with Seminars on Ayurveda, diet and lifestyle by their Ayurvedic Doctor.
Daily 90 minutes of comprehensive prescribed Ayurvedic treatments tailored by their Ayurvedic specialist, twice daily yoga sessions, daily foot massages prior to treatments, 6 luxurious Ayurvedic beauty treatments using an age defying formula to refresh, tighten and remove toxins from your face and neck, freshly prepared Ayurvedic dishes for breakfast, lunch and dinner and so much more.
Sacha Jí, Andean Retreat Destination, Ecuador
Sacha Jí is a work of art and a unique destination retreat located in the heart of the Ecuadorian Andes that specializes in providing an ideal environment to transform, create and connect.
Your first impression will be one of awe and admiration for the natural beauty of the mountains and lake that embrace Sacha Jí. The feng shui-based architecture and sustainable design, vegetable and flower gardens, and rooms with unparalleled views, all create the perfect setting for relaxing and regaining balance. Their wellness programs, organic gourmet cuisine, healing therapies and activities such as daily yoga and horseback-riding offer you a holistic experience that re-connects you to nature and yourself. Nestled between two volcanoes and an impressive lake, the intimate 11-room hotel offers unparalleled views from every room, therefore becoming the perfect setting to renew and regain balance.
Their Wellness Experience Packages are tailor-made to fit your needs. They include daily yoga classes, guided mediations, and a variety of healing therapies such as equine assisted therapy, reiki and sat nam rasayan which will help you de-stress and restore.
Arosea Life Balance Hotel, Italy
In a remote valley high in the south Tyrolean Alps you can fulfil your dream of being in solitary unspoiled nature while enjoying a sophisticated modern environment and inviting hospitality. To improve your wellbeing you find ancient local healing methods and the latest holistic offerings.
Their signature package is the Hot Zirm Life. This includes Ultner mountain herb drink, Steam bath with Salt-’Zirm’-Peeling, eye compress, Osteopathic tuning with mental relaxatin, foot stimulation with Ultner Bergbach-Sand and foot bath, Hot ‘Zirm’ Life honouring massage for back and legs and mountain herbs bath with wooden whirlpool.
And if you liked this story, subscribe to our bi-monthly World Travel Magazine, a handpicked selection of editorial features and stories from Global Destinations, Inspire Me, Insider, Style File, Wellness & Travel, City Travel, Suite Life, At Leisure, Short Breaks and much more.