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My Experience at the Scandinave Spa

This weekend my boyfriend asked me to go on a three-day couple’s trip snowboarding in Blue Mountain. Naturally, I am always delighted to get out of town and experience a new place, but the THING IS, I am TERRIBLE at skiing, snowboarding, being outside in cold climates, etc.

Luckily for me, the girlfriends/wives of the other couples weren’t exactly super keen on attending the slopes either. So, we found a spa up in the mountains to try out called Scandinave Spa, and I cannot stop talking about my experience there.

The spa day began with a bit of a bump in the road. The way the spa works is a bit complicated. You show up at 9 A.M. to be added to a waitlist. Many guests don’t have the opportunity to make it off of the waitlist and into the spa, due to the high volume of visitors. You can make reservations, but you have to purchase some other kind of service, like a massage. Since we wanted to keep it low budget, we decided to risk the waitlist. As you wait for your group to be moved off the waitlist and given entry, you are able to leave and do as you please up in Blue Mountain—whether that’s some shopping, dining or winter activities. The spa sends you a text when your group can access the spa, and you have one hour to show up or your spot is given away. We were ecstatic when our group, number 23 on the waitlist, finally got our text and made it off the list after about five hours.

The spa is a series of pools, steam rooms, saunas and relaxation rooms—all outdoors, deep in a forest up on one of the mountains. It’s recommended that you complete a “circuit” of sorts three to four times when you enter the spa.

Essentially, you begin with a “hot” component— either a hot pool (kind of like a GIANT hot tub), a sauna or a steam room. My favourite “hot” activity was the eucalyptus steam room. Although it was really creepy to watch people enter the steam room and slowly fade into the steam on the other side of the room, it genuinely felt like I was sweating out every toxin that has ever entered my body. Breathing in the eucalyptus felt incredible for my sinuses, and was incredibly refreshing. The saunas and pools all varied in temperature so you could find something just right to promote maximum relaxation without feeling stressed about being overheated.

The next stage was a “cool” component. Guests are encouraged to follow their “hot” component with an icy dip in one of the cold pools. This part was a struggle for me, as soon as one of my toes graced the pool I was ready to bolt back to another hot component. However, I really wanted to get the most out of my experience so I plunged into the pool. I honestly cannot explain how great it felt to go from hot to cold. As I completed the circuit multiple times, I found myself later able to enter the cold pool slowly and truly appreciate the feeling fully before bolting back out.

The final stage, before you repeated the circuit, was a resting component. The spa had multiple rooms filled with big lawn chairs, hammocks, yoga mats, and a few fireplaces outside you could sit next to. After taking a moment to reflect, you began the cycle again. Guests who make it into the spa can stay as long as they want, completing the hot-cold-rest circuit as many times as they’d like! Personally, I went through four times. I felt like I could have stopped after three circuits—but I couldn’t help but do one more.

My favourite part about the spa were the rules. The spa enforces a quiet policy, and all conversation was mandated to whispers, if that. I found this to be difficult at first, as I was with friends and it was so exciting to be experiencing the spa for the first time. Eventually, though, I truly appreciated the time that I got to be quiet with myself. As someone who is loud and obnoxious about 99 percent of the time, I found it really refreshing to be alone with my thoughts.

It wasn’t until later on, hours after we left the spa, that I truly felt the full extent of its benefits. Being a dancer, I struggle greatly with the effects of my sport on my body. I constantly feel sore, and though I love the feeling of being active, I do get exhausted with the constant need for massages, physiotherapy and stretching. This felt like the first time in awhile that I was able to treat my body and mind with some self-care. For the first time in forever I slept completely through the night. I felt, and still feel, like I kind of hit a “reset” button when I got to experience something so unique in such a beautiful place—that isn’t too far from London.

All in all, I highly recommend that, if you are looking for something new to try, you look into Scandinave Spa. Or any spa really. It is incredible how just taking a few hours out of your day to be quiet and focus solely on yourself, whether at a beautiful spa or just in your bathtub at home, can revitalize the mind and change your perspective.

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Third year Criminology and Women's Studies student, avid Netflix enthusiast, food addict and competitive pole dancer.
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