When looking for a SPA break, it can easily become a daunting and rather tasking job when considering one outside of the UK. If you're anything like me, you might need the attention of a chess champion,in which case you might want a spa break from your own brain afterwards. To make things a little simpler, here's one that's tried and tested by yours truly. For that perfect way to unwind, without the pressure of a full on detox of kale smoothies and meditating over an almond nut, look no further than the C-Hotel SPA. Discreetly nestled among the foothills of Cassago Brianza in Italy, this undiscovered gem boasts views that dramatically looks out to the the Swiss Alps, Lake Como and Lecco which, if you wanted to visit is all just 20 mins drive from the hotel.
After a rather uneventful flight with the usual delays, I arrived in-tact and found myself kicking off my shoes, washing up and settling into nap, only to discover I was half a day behind on my holistic schedule. I jumped to action and got myself ready for the first thing on my itinerary which was a yoga session. I was introduced to Martha, who does most of the treatments, and who despite my complete failure to even grasp a grain of the Italian language, rather gracefully guided me through the session. Her authenticity and radiant smile put me at ease as we worked our way through what she liked to call 'happy yoga' Naturally I felt amazing.
In between personal training sessions and detox sessions, I was never not in awe of the almost hypnotic views and the idyllic sounds of birds flitting their wings from place to place. Everything is so picturesque and almost engulfs you with it's unforgiving sheer beauty that you completely forget that you're only 1 hour and 30 mins outside of Milan. It's hard not to watch the sun go down when you're supposed to be preparing for dinner...
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The menu is simple, fresh and varied. If you're not ready to just consume a salad you can always opt for the steak and potatoes or the organic vegetable risotto like I did. Absolutely everything was sumptuous and made with passion by the head chef Luca.
ABOUT THE SPA:
1. It's a boutique hotel so it's probably best to find out about availability ahead of time. It's also very popular with the locals (which in my book makes for a much more authentic experience). It is a little tricky to find but there is a car available to pick you up from the airport if you need it.
2. The SAUNA and pools (pictured above) are the most popular feature and you will need to book a slot in advance. The good news is that the pool is open until midnight and provides direct access to the jacuzzi pictured below.
3. The juices and smoothies are made a little differently compared to ones I am used to in the UK or anywhere else, they resembled more of a puree but in a good way.
4. If you want to score extra travel points it only takes about 20-30 minutes by car to get to LAKE COMO, BRIANZA or LECCO so it would be prudent to keep one of your afternoons treatment free if you want to visit these places.
5. There is a concept store and bakery adjacent to the hotel called COLZANI which is part of the hotel and provides all the hotel's fruits and pastries. The gelatos are sublime and as you can imagine, and all completely organic.
6. The brands they used on me for the detoxifying treatments are by COMFORT ZONE from the BODY STRATEGIST range and help to slough off the dead skin and any lumps and bumps around the pores
7. Everyone at the hotel speaks English but when venturing out, you are in legit Italian territory, so many locals will only speak Italian. Don't be like me. Brush up on your Italian.
8. What to pack: Bikinis, swimsuits, gym clothes, a good pair of trainers for walking in, SPF and don't forget to bring a camera, you can get one here
Being at the C-Hotel Spa gave me permission to indulge in myself, giving the much needed self care. I made a few life decisions, one being that I would have more 'wellness weekends' and more weekends away and all in all, to be kinder to myself.
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