20 of the world’s best wellness and spa resorts – reviewed

Treat your body and mind to a revitalising stay at a world-class retreat

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1. Zulal Wellness Resort by Chiva-Som

Zulal Wellness Resort by Chiva-Som in Qatar

Al Ruwais, Qatar

The first of its kind in Qatar, Zulal Wellness Resort is an ideal retreat after exploring the fascinating capital city, Doha, or indeed going to direct for its unique wellbeing offering. Treatments are a blend of Traditional Arabic & Islamic Medicine (TAIM) and Thai influence from the renowned Chiva-Som retreat in Hua Hin. I especially liked the Al Batin abdominal massage, using jade stones, and the Qatari stone massage using volcanic stone which retains heat and releases beneficial minerals. Focussing on holistic health, staff here use tools to deliver bespoke itineraries to each guest, including consultations, in-house herbal apothecary, nutrition and exercise, all within a spectacular coastal setting.

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There’s a choice of adult-only accommodation in the “Serenity” wing, where the rooms let you be entwined with restorative nature and boast views of sand, sea and lagoon. Some also feature private plunge pools, sauna, a garden and terraces. As well as adult-only accommodation, the peaceful offering extends to treatment rooms and activity areas. The “Discovery” wing allows families to embark on a wellness journey together. Children have their own wellbeing activities like nature excursions, dance classes and kayaking. Serenity guests can use the facilities of Discovery, but not vice versa.

The three restaurants – Al Sidr (Serenity) and Acacia and Aizoon (Discovery) – are outstanding, serving creative dishes all cooked with nutrition and low-calorie count in mind. In the evenings I enjoyed sipping tea from the Tea House and picking books from their excellent library, all inspiring good health.

Yasemen Kaner-White was a guest of Zulal Wellness Resort by Chiva-Som. Rates start from approx £725 per person per night, based on two adults sharing a Serenity Grand Deluxe King Bed room, including taxes and service with inclusions as above. Minimum three-night stay.


2. The Datai Langkawi

The Datai Langkawi resort in Malaysia

Langkawi Island, Malaysia

Deep in the rainforest, The Datai Langkawi provides a restorative residence to indulge in Malaysian-style massage, treatments and experiences, while also being sustainable and caring for the environment. Nature excursions including canoeing through mangroves, dolphin watching, hornbill spotting, rainforest meditative walks, bathing in a natural spring and swimming in the adjacent sea. All these activities ensure peace of mind and a connection with the beautiful environment around you.

Accommodation options include beachside villas, rainforest villas, as well as the “Canopy Collection” which sit beside the main pool and lobby lounge. Even then, you’re bound to see the clown-faced, playful dusky langur monkeys swinging from the branches ahead. The cuisine is based on Malay classics as well as Thai. Southern Thailand can be seen from Langkawi island, so it plays a part in the culinary influence. Ingredients include local fresh seafood and homegrown produce and herbs.

A highlight here is the spa, where treatments take place in a private space which is open to the rainforest and a small stream. Malaysian wellbeing traditions are taken seriously, with guests able to try and benefit from ancient local philosophies. I went for the “Tungku Batu” massage, whereby a river stone, lemongrass, galangal, pepper, cloves, cinnamon, ginger and other healing herbal ingredients (used by Malay healers to reduce pain and increase circulation), are wrapped in a cotton pouch and massaged onto pressure points. There is an extensive menu and even a seven-hour wellness journey called “Mandi Embun”, a medley of Malay traditions, from mindful forest bathing to a traditional massage in the serene spa.

Yasemen Kaner-White was a guest of The Datai Langkawi. Rates start from £450 per room, per night on a bed and breakfast basis.


3. Chiva-Som Hua Hin

Chiva-Som Hua Hin

Hua Hin, Thailand

Chiva-Som is a sanctuary of serenity. Nestled within lush foliage in Hua Hin, Thailand, the spa resort features a large pool at centre stage and the beach at its feet – perfect for sunrise walks. The approach here is holistic, from a nutritious diet, varied exercise, to an eclectic mix of treatments, all aiming to help people age well.

My favourite sessions included traditional Thai therapeutics, whereby I had a consultation with a doctor, followed by a bespoke massage and then a healing herbal steam bath. I also tried PNF (proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation) stretching for the first time, which was fun, and to work up a sweat I loved the TRX (total resistance exercises) class. The sound bath meditation with Tibetan bowls really brings peace. There’s also a daily schedule of extra activities, including pilates reformer, yoga and aqua hand buoy.

The food at Chiva-Som is fantastic, using fresh ingredients mostly grown on site. Stand-out dishes included the flavoursome tom yum soup and the pad Thai, which came with brown noodles, a sauce made from dates and a choice of protein. I chose prawns as Hua Hin is famous for its seafood. To finish there was a lovely local coconut pudding with taro and jackfruit seeds.

Armed with the natural citronella and lemongrass mosquito spray given in the suite, there’s a sense of calm when eating opposite the sea. The calm is aided by mobile phones being prohibited – so mindful eating comes into play. There’s also a huge array of Thai herbal teas available, from refreshing cold lemongrass to a warming “scent of the forest” featuring liquorice and chrysanthemum to stimulate the liver and digestion. Fresh coconuts are very popular, too.

Chiva-Som’s accommodation is flawless. Fruit bowls, impressive complimentary snacks such as chocolate covered goji berries, Thai pyjamas and treats like “nourishing night mists” make you feel at home.

Yasemen Kaner-White was a guest of Chiva-Som Hua Hin. Rates start from £590 per person per night in low season, for two sharing an Ocean Room, including taxes. Stays are on a retreat basis which include three meals a day, all treatments in the retreat programme, a daily massage, as well as access to spa facilities and daily activity schedule. Minimum three-night stay.


4. Ananda in the Himalayas

Ananda is located on a 100-acre Maharaja’s Palace Estate in northern India

(Image credit: Ananda)

Narendra Nagar, Uttarakhand, India

A holistic attitude to wellbeing is inherent in ancient Indian philosophies – and this is the benchmark for the principles being served up at Ananda in the Himalayas. At this destination spa resort you can discover what your mind and body really need and you’ll leave as an enhanced version of yourself.

Perched on a lushly forested mountainside more than 1,000m above sea level, Ananda is located in the foothills of the Indian Himalayan region near Rishikesh, “the yoga capital of the world”. As soon as you arrive, you know that you’re in a special place.

The retreat offers a combination of expert-led yoga, meditation, vedanta, ayurveda, oriental and international wellness therapies, as well as insightful emotional healing and complimentary cuisine. Using these tools, there are tailored and specific programmes which last various time-spans and focus on anything from detoxification of body and mind, stress management and hormonal balance through to weight loss. Combined with nourishing and delicious food, Ananda stands out for all the right reasons in the world of wellbeing retreats.


5. Dhawa Ihuru

Dhawa Ihuru is located in the North Malé Atoll

(Image credit: Banyan Tree Hotels & Resorts)

North Malé Atoll, Maldives

The island sanctuary of Dhawa Ihuru, part of The Banyan Tree Group’s Dhawa brand, is located in the North Malé Atoll, a speedy 20-minute boat ride from the airport. There’s a welcome lack of sophistication here – it’s a very relaxed, organic, casual affair; you’ll take your shoes off on arrival and they won’t go back on till you leave. Sand is the only flooring (rooms excepted); low huts are roofed with palm and everything is open to the elements. Well, to the sun, the cool breeze and the very occasional tropical downpour.

It rather goes without saying but you’re here for the ocean. The island has a strong bent towards diving and snorkelling; indeed, it doesn’t have a pool, so all dips must be taken in the sea. It’s no secret the Maldives features some of the world’s best diving. Dhawa has a ship wreck – the Rannamaari – just off the edge of the reef, around 26 metres deep, which is a great place for first-timers and the advanced alike.

The open-air “8lements” spa is excellent. It’s the perfect spot to while away an hour or two listening to nothing but the sounds of the island.


6. Euphoria Retreat

Euphoria Retreat is surrounded by trees and mountains

(Image credit: Stavros Habakis)

Mystras, Sparta, Greece

Sitting within a mountain range and surrounded by pine trees, Euphoria Retreat overlooks the bijou village of Mystras. The main building is an 18th century mansion house, with modern upgrades and chic accommodation. The retreat also has a private forest with marked walkways, seating and space to exercise or meditate.

There is an indoor pool featuring a deep water area where you can dive into or simply lay on your back feeling relaxed while enclosed with the reassuring dark domed ceiling above. You can then swim to the outdoor pool in the garden area, which is a blessing in summer as there are ample sun loungers around to soak up the vitamin D. In winter you might like to cosy up in the Californian hot tub.

Inside the spa you can embrace the benefits of Kneipp Therapy while walking through the foot baths, or detox in the speleotherapy-salt room. If you have a penchant for water therapy, then you can try an in-water massage in the Watsu pool. There is a daily schedule of activities and classes to join if you wish, covering high intensity circuit classes to fun rebounding (aka trampolining) to silent nature walks, energy movement classes, and breath-work sessions.

Euphoria Retreat is perfect if you are after a wellbeing holiday in an idyllic spot surrounded by trees and majestic mountains. If your aim is to lose weight, mentally reset, or simply take time out to relax, then Euphoria is ideal. The diet, fitness and spiritual guidance offered is reassuring, as is the pine forest which will be your backdrop.


7. Hôtel Royal, Evian Resort

Take a dip in the royal swimming pool

(Image credit: Evian Resort)

Évian-les-Bains, France

Évian-les-Bains is perched on the border between France and Switzerland and the best place to stay is the otherworldly five-star Hôtel Royal, part of the Evian Resort (which also houses the four-star Hôtel Ermitage). Opened in 1909 as a spa retreat for European royalty, the iconic bolthole has hosted a glittering array of guests over the past two centuries, including such luminaries as Queen Elizabeth II, Marcel Proust, Édith Piaf and Greta Garbo.

Behold, 1,200 luxurious square metres dedicated entirely to wellness, and, the best bit – it’s open for late-night pampering. At Spa Evian Source there’s indoor and outdoor pools, a steam room, sauna, hamman, hot tub, gym, treatment rooms and a relaxation room (which also happens to be the Aga Khan III’s old apartment). As well as an extensive treatment menu, there’s also the option of a four-day detox programme, including yoga, hydro-massages, aromatherapy, and forest bathing. The spa is undergoing a renovation (re-opening July 2023), with new immersive and multi-sensory experiences currently being concocted. The indoor pool and outside hydro-circuit are temporarily closed, but everything else remains open.

Swimming in the heated outdoor infinity pool overlooking Lake Geneva was an unforgettable experience. The pool, lake and sky merged together in a blue-hued palette and the snow-capped Chablais mountains on the horizon looked strangely familiar. We later found out that they are the very peaks that grace every bottle of Evian water around the world.


8. Six Senses Kaplankaya

Six Senses Kaplankaya is located on the Aegean Sea

Muğla, Turkey

North of Bodrum, near sleepy Kaplankaya, lies a serene outpost of the Six Senses hospitality brand. There are endless activities going on at Six Senses Kaplankaya and wellness is front and centre. Guests can take a hike, go for a run or bike ride along coastal paths – or engage in aerial yoga.

A “Wellness Screening” session provides an intimate look inside yourself to gauge whether you’ve been keeping up with your exercise, a healthy diet and getting enough sleep along with recommendations for getting to your optimum (including a pod that will take you, albeit virtually, to the top of Everest). Good news – you can’t fail the test. An incredibly well-decked out gym has a bristling array of sparkling equipment ready to put you through your paces and the two outdoor pools and one indoor pool mean you have no excuses for not growing gills while you stay here.

The jewel in the hotel’s crown is its gargantuan spa – at 10,000 square metres it’s larger than any in Europe. It has all manner of paths to zen, from spiritual to physical healing via meditation chambers, Watsu flotation massage, sound therapy, a hot Himalayan salt room, hydrothermal features, private steam and sauna rooms, an ice room – you name it, they have it. For such a large space, this sanctum is surprisingly intimate.


9. Lanserhof Lans

The outdoor pool looks out to the mountainous landscape

Lans, Austria

Located just a 25-minute drive from the airport in the idyllic Austrian city of Innsbruck, the Lanserhof Lans health retreat in Tyrol has unobstructed views of the Nordkette Alps. The monumental mountains towering above the dense fairy-tale forest beckon you to explore and just sitting gazing out is a treatment within itself. For the adventurous, you can go on bike rides, hikes or when in season, ski.

The indoor pool leads to the outdoor pool via an automatic door, so you can breathe in the pine-infused air, looking out to the mountainous landscape. There is an amazing sauna blessed by beautiful vistas, a steam room, an infrared chair, a fireplace to relax in front of and many loungers to relax on.

Everyday there is a timetable of activities to choose from. Mornings start with energising “active awakening in nature” whereby as a group you undergo gentle exercises cocooned by trees and birdsong. Depending on your energy levels you can choose activities such as Zumba, Nordic walking, circuit training or calmer mobilisation and stretching, Qi Gong or yoga. There are cooking classes to replicate the highly nutritious cuisine, seminars and even musical concerts in the communal areas.


10. Rosewood Phuket

The swimming pool at Rosewood Phuket in Thailand

Phuket, Thailand

Behind a set of truly gargantuan, imposing doors, the Rosewood Phuket immediately establishes itself as a temple of tranquillity. It’s a deeply intimate hotel built in a blend of traditional and modern styles, village-like, incorporating elements of traditional Thai design – where the only other guests you might come across will be at breakfast or its fabulous restaurant, Ta Khai. This is a masterclass in understated opulence.

The hotel is built into a steep hill running down to the ocean – small pools dotted with sun loungers lead up to a low hedge. Head through one of the gates to a perfect crescent of sand and turquoise seas fringed with picture-perfect palms; it’s almost a cliché. Emerald Beach is 600 metres long and sees few tourists – you’ll have it just about to yourself.

The Rosewood Phuket is a temple of zen and the ultimate in tropical escapes with its fantastic beach, great pools, an astonishingly good spa and exquisite food. For those not wanting to lounge around getting a tan, there are plenty of fitness activities, a beach boot camp and water sports like kayaking and paddle-boarding.


11. Forte Village Resort

Forte Village is located just a 45-minute drive from Cagliari airport

(Image credit: Forte Village Resort)

Sardinia, Italy

Just a 45-minute drive from Cagliari airport, the resort covers an area of 50 hectares of dense tropical forest plus a stretch of dazzlingly pretty coastline warmed by its own microclimate. Opened in 1974 by Italian-born hotel magnate Charles Forte as a holiday park for sports-mad guests, over the decades it’s changed hands and it’s now a swish oasis of luxury with five-star and four-star hotels, suites and luxury villas with private gardens.

But it’s not about accommodation alone – Forte Village’s specialty is offering activities for those who want to do more than lever themselves on and off a sunbed during their stay. Guests can go boating, take a Zumba class or train with a champion boxer.

You can also retire to the resort’s Thalassotherapy spa, arranged under the forest canopy in a series of winding covered walkways. Its six pools of varying degrees of saltiness and temperature are said to have a detoxifying effect. The spa offers a wealth of wellness programmes for weight loss, detox and health. From the fine food to sporty activities to beach or spa-based relaxation, Forte Village has it covered. It’s a Sardinian oasis where a dedication to high quality ensures guests won’t want to leave.


12. Abama Resort Tenerife

Abama Resort Tenerife

Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain

Far from the madding crowds of Playa de las Américas, Abama Resort Tenerife is a literal oasis carved into the side of the southwest of the island with stunning views of the isle of La Gomera front and centre. Surrounded on three sides by acres of banana plantations and with the breathtaking Atlantic Ocean stretching across the horizon, Abama is a perfect blend of substance and style.

Wellness is at the core of Abama, and the resort regularly hosts “Abama Wellness Weekends”. The facilities at this luxury resort are top of the range and wherever you are, the views are breathtaking. The impeccable rolling, par 72, 18-hole golf course is multi award-winning and the seven tennis courts are frequented by both the ATP and ITF tours.

If you need to cool down you can choose one of the three infinity pools that are dotted across the 400 hectare site or take the complimentary transfer down to the beach which is set in a small rocky cove (covered with imported white sand), with ladders to access two natural pools. There is also a fully-equipped gym and kids’ clubs.


13. Schloss Elmau

Schloss Elmau

Elmau, Germany

It’s the elephants that provide the first clue. The symbol of Schloss Elmau, a luxury five-star hotel nestled in a storybook valley, isn’t a kitsch nod to tradition you might expect of a Bavarian spa retreat. Instead, it’s an Indian elephant that’s woven into the fabric of bedroom headboards, blinds, restaurant tapestries, soft furnishings and pillows for sale at reception.

The castle’s original building, The Hideaway, was modernised and reopened in 2007 after a 2005 fire. It contains the concert hall, three restaurants, 115 rooms of varying sizes and its own vast spa complex called The Badehaus. The Retreat boasts 47 spacious rooms, three restaurants, a gym, treatment rooms and the more compact Shantigiri spa, divided into family and adult-only areas. The latter also featured a piping-hot outdoor Japanese Onsen pool.

At the Oriental Hammam, an underground warren of exotic rooms, guests can be transported to the East. In a fusion of oriental design and Bavarian craftmanship, the spa was crafted with 200 million-year-old Jurassic limestone from nearby Solnhofen. It features three domed rooms with navel stones – those marble slabs where guests lay for massages – plus two steam baths and four treatment rooms. The hammam’s relaxation lounge was particularly inviting, featuring a theatrically vaulted ceiling and oriental furnishings, plus tea and Turkish sweets on offer.


14. Lefay Resort & Spa

Panoramic sauna

Lake Garda, Italy

Guests can be pampered senseless at the magnificent Lefay Resort & Spa Lago di Garda, a supremely luxurious spot nestled in the hills of Gargnano on the western shore of – you guessed it – Lake Garda. High up in the north Italian hillside, the resort proclaims itself to be a union of “luxury, wellness and nature” and it delivers on each of those in absolute spades.

Think multiple saunas. Think multiple pools. Fancy an infinity pool? You have one. Like your pools to be indoors? You’ve got one of those. Want a sauna with a panoramic view of the glorious surroundings? Got that! Add to the mix a dizzying array of steam rooms, relaxation areas and a spa offering every kind of health and beauty treatment you can think of, plus complimentary snack bars stocked with fruit, nuts, homemade herbal teas and suchlike behind every corner.

Beyond the multitude of bathing and steaming options, there is a well-stocked onsite gym, offering, once again, rather delightful views of the surrounding lake and mountains. If you’re feeling more adventurous, however, the resort offers a range of exercise classes. The price of a private class varies but group sessions are included with your stay.


15. Amanruya

The main swimming pool at Amanruya

Muğla, Turkey

Around 20 minutes from Bodrum on the quiet, northern coast of the peninsula, lies the Amanruya beach resort, an outpost of the Aman luxury hotel family. Being among nature plays a pivotal role in the serenity at the hotel and Amanruya frequently bridges gaps between internal and external spaces, creating a hybrid style of living, perfect for the balmy Turkish temperatures.

Amanruya is all about understated opulence and relaxation. It’s restrained luxury, sensitively designed in an Ottoman style to create an intimate and yet grand village atmosphere. There’s not a lot to do here – that’s the point, really – it’s a pure escape from it all. Take a buggy or stroll down the dusty track to the private beach; there are clusters of sun-loungers in secluded pockets among the trees or on decks out over the water. There are sprawling beds for two or three with snail shells of spiralled rush matting as arm rests. The shore is pebbly and rocky, but there are steps down into the drink. Canoes and paddle boards are free for guests and a spa offers various treatments.


16. Pimalai Resort & Spa

The hotel has a 900m beachfront on Kantiang Beach

(Image credit: Pimalai Resort & Spa)

Koh Lanta, Thailand

Pimalai is arguably Koh Lanta island’s best hotel: its expansive suites are unutterably beautiful and its food and bars are prolific with excellent Thai specialities. Where it truly shines is its award-winning spa – a remarkable haven set in a valley of lush foliage. Treatment rooms are set out as a small village of huts made with native wood, stone and ceramics, each set back from the meandering stream and hugged by the towering greenery.

Its extensive menu of massages, facials, scrubs, wraps and beauty treatments include hot bamboo massages, balancing facials, after sun care and mud wraps. The ever-calm and smiling spa staff hide hands of iron – massages range from soft, sleep-inducing rubs to powerful fingers finding and releasing deep knots decades in the making. Loping out of the treatment rooms in a near hypnotic state, bathed in an aromatic oil of your choice, you’re brought to the quiet lounge to sip rejuvenating ginger tea and overlook the koi pond and waterfall.

Koh Lanta is very much a nature destination. You can swim straight from Pimalai’s beach or relax in one of the myriad pools, but there’s also plenty of excursions. Pimalai also offers complimentary watersports, scuba diving, yoga, Muay Thai, and exercise classes.


17. Palazzo di Varignana

The glorious Palazzo Bentivoglio is the centrepiece of the resort

(Image credit: Palazzo di Varignana)

Emilia-Romagna, Italy

Palazzo di Varignana is a swish retreat in the hills outside Bologna. The region, Emilia-Romagna, hasn’t attracted the attention of British tourists searching for the Chiantishire experience, but it’s their oversight. Emilia-Romagna possesses many of the charms of Tuscany and Umbria, like historic towns and velvety greenery enough to conjure up images of Julia Roberts in “Eat Pray Love”.

It’s an upscale oasis situated on a 30-hectare estate, a modern mini-village arranged sympathetically around its centrepiece, the glorious Palazzo Bentivoglio. The 18th-century castle dominates the landscape and, like the rest of the resort, commands a sweeping view of the valley all the way to the Alps.

There’s an indoor spa that’s compact but elegant, with a Jacuzzi pool connected to a small outdoor pool. A selection of steam rooms, Kneipp bath, bio-sauna, Finnish sauna and Jacuzzis provide all the water-based wellness you could ask for. Like many upmarket Italian resorts, the spa offers detox and weight loss regimes.

The excellent Ars Vivendi Private Spa is a two-hour experience that cherry picks the best spa traditions. The first room is a private hammam with mini-pool and steam room, the second an Ofuru, a piping hot Japanese hot tub in dark, cosy surrounds.


18. Vila Foz Hotel & Spa

The indoor swimming pool and spa at Vila Foz

Porto, Portugal

Take a 15-minute drive from Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport, Porto’s main travel hub, and you reach the striking Vila Foz Hotel & Spa. There are two parts to Vila Foz; the older, 19th century central building which was originally a wealthy family’s home and a newer section. Renovations were completed in 2019 which involved a sensitive redesign of the interior of the “palace”, including all seven suites, and the construction of the new building housing 61 sea-facing rooms. They all face east and the floor-to-ceiling windows create a living picture of the sun descending over the horizon and into the dark waters of the Atlantic.

One of the most striking features of the hotel is the indoor swimming pool in the basement of the hotel. A great swathe of earth has been carved out in front of it and rebuilt in stone, steps and succulents, creating a private sun-trap and making you feel a little like you’re in a luxurious Bond villain’s lair.

If R&R is a priority, head straight to the hotel spa for some unwinding treatments in soothingly designed rooms. There’s a hammam and a sauna for those so inclined. For a bit more zen, to overlook a walk along this wonderful stretch of coast would be a mistake. For the brave, the sea makes for a bracing dip.


19. Civana Wellness Resort & Spa

Civana Wellness Resort & Spa

(Image credit: Civana Wellness Resort & Spa)

Carefree, Arizona, US

If you’re looking for the kind of place where you can hole up for a week, then Civana could be it. An affordable newcomer on the wellness scene, the owners of the spa resort wanted to create an experience without the boring stuff – the dieting, the supplements, the scales, all of which can be found locally in Tucson.

Civana is an elegant mid-century hotel set in the tumbleweed town of Carefree in Arizona’s Sonoran Desert. This low-slung structure framed by boulder fields and mountains houses a distinct approach to health: guests are inspired to discover their life potential via four pillars – discovery, nourishment, movement and spa – with seven complimentary classes daily. The experiences are designed to be fun, interesting and provide the chance to try new things. Hence the activities range from kayaking, pickle ball and aerial yoga through to the esoteric sound bath sessions, desert bathing, intention burning and an introduction to crystals.

The theme of the resort’s spa is “healing through water”. There are 28 treatment areas including a Watsu therapy pool, which involves stretching, massage and acupressure in warm water. The “silent sanctuary” is a hydrotherapy circuit designed to target “inner peace and outer balance”, while the aqua vitality circuit is a communal area of hydrotherapy immersions including a hot/cold wading pool and a therapeutic soaking pool.


20. F Zeen Retreat Kefalonia

F Zeen Retreat Kefalonia

Kefalonia, Greece

Kefalonia, a little slice of paradise in the Ionian Sea, presents an astonishing variety of faces. In contrast to the cut-and-paste beach resorts of Corfu and the stag-do destinations of Zakynthos, Kefalonia is largely devoid of tourist crowds, multi-storey hotel resorts and overpriced cocktail bars. What it does have though is one of Greece’s most ambitious wellness resorts, the F Zeen Retreat. Guests can really unwind at this yoga retreat that captures the essence of this eccentric outpost of the Ionian Islands.

Although “F Zeen” may not be a name that rolls off the tongue of the average English speaker, it is definitely apt, as a transliterated form of an Ancient Greek phrase meaning, approximately, “a good life in terms of balance and health”. From the impressive range of infinity pools to the serene yoga and meditation terraces, this adults-only wellness retreat is the epitome of good living.

As well as spa, yoga and outdoor fitness, the resort has a number of restaurants, an organic garden, and a range of rooms and villas, some of which feature Jacuzzis or swimming pools.


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