Wednesday 10 May 2017

San Pellegrino QC Terme Spa

Think back to a time in your life when you felt relaxed, so relaxed you could feel it in your bones, so relaxed it felt like your soul was being cleansed and you were losing the understanding of what stress could ever be again. Remember that and now imagine that feeling whilst being nestled beneath a mountain with the blue sky above you and the sun shining bright. That, was what it felt like to visit this wonderful spa.

Many people don't realise San Pellegrino is a real place. Known for its water and fruity drinks, their birth place is a quietly stunning town, near silent of tourists in the foot of the northern Italian mountains. Picturesque buildings and charismatic cafes, the town is set overlooking a wide river running through the middle, leading your eyes through to the high peaks.

If you wander a street back from the centre, set up off the road, you'll find a winding set of steps leading you through purposefully wild planting and past a water fountain setting the scene for the romantic gothicism of the building that waits at the top, San Pellegrino QC Terme Spa.

Clean white marble interiors greet you in the entrance hall, with friendly staff, who despite the rumours, do in fact speak English, help you organise your day.
After we were dressed in our swimwear and kitted out in our robes and flip flops we were left to explore the magnificent spa to our hearts content. Marble staircases and intricately designed wallpapers lead you upstairs where the theme for the entire place is well being.

Upstairs you find yourself on a 'wellness path', a corridor of rooms, from salt rooms and cold rooms, to sensory rooms, aimed at calming and clearing the mind. From water beds, with the sounds of flowing water and fluid movements projected on the ceiling, to forest rooms with wooden seats, birds calling and foliage projected on the walls. There's endless saunas to help detox you and your skin, some with varying heats and some with essential oils and scents.

You continue down a corridor that bridges the two halves of the building. The second half is where you'll find the water..

There are walk in showers with heads running along the wall all shooting out water at varying pressures as you walk back and fourth, awakening your muscles and getting the blood flowing. There are physical therapies, with two channels of waist deep water, one delightfully warm, you could lie in all day long, and the other, so freezing cold it could have come from the arctic. Focused on injury and muscle recovery, this one was definitely an experience!

There are other areas with similar ideas; submersion baths that you lay in and relax before washing off with a cool shower to refresh your skin and loosened muscles. Foot baths, bubbly and warm with an endless supply of foot salts to give your feet an extra boost.
There are tubs to laze in, some with bubbles, some with music and some with panoramic views, perfectly placed to soak up the whole days worth of sun.

Heading to the mountains in April meant there was still a nip in the air which I didn't fully appreciate until I was lying outside in a pool so warm I could fall asleep, with the fresh breeze making me feeling a little bit more revived with every breath - I have honestly never breathed so freely as being in those mountains!
My favourite area of the pools had submerged loungers in, which when a button is pressed, they turn into your very own jacuzzi massage chair.

After you've spent enough time submerged and you've started to wrinkle there are balcony's filled with lemon and lime trees, tucked slightly away for a more private moment, pod like sofas which I need to invest in for my future home, or my personal favourite to relax and dry off on, a sun drenched deck filled with bright coloured chairs overlooking the main outside pool with a stunning view of the mountains.



Lunch was a wonderful feast, in a magnificent room. Tables piled high with healthy and wholesome foods (and a couple of naughty treats), from delicious pumpkin soup, rice salads and vegetable quiche to pear and chocolate cake and apple tart for pudding. Of course lunch wouldn't have been complete without a bottle of San Pellegrino, less than two miles from it's original source.

My favourite part of the day was a treat to myself, a 30 minute foot massage. I suffer with my circulation so after flying this was exactly what I needed. The lovely Laura did my treatment and it was wonderful from start to finish. I got to choose the type of music and the type of oil I wanted her to use, although I can't remember the specific one, I know it was completely natural and smelt fantastic! Every single millimetre from my toes to my mid calf was kneaded and massaged until they felt so light they could have been floating. I was so close to drifting off in my treatment but I was determined to saviour every moment.

From beginning to end, the spa is an experience, focused on awakening and cleansing your mind, body and soul. And even if that isn't your usual cup of tea, be sure to embrace it and you'll leave feeling an awful lot lighter!!


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