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Wellness with a difference

Steam bath, hot-stone massage, manicure, pedicure – quintessential relaxation and a definite must for any upmarket wellness experience. And after a session in the sauna, a glass of prosecco to celebrate. That, at least, is how I imagine wellness. But what does not figure in my paradisiacal daydreams is beer. Beer and wellness? Until recently, I would have reacted with some incredulous headshaking if someone had told me that beer is being used for wellness treatments.

But in actual fact it isn’t that surprising really. After all, beer is acknowledged as a time-honoured ancient household remedy, which can be repurposed not only as a soothing nightcap but also as a hair conditioner. Beer mixed with some neutral shampoo and the yolk of an egg – lo and behold, my very own hair treatment elixir. Thousands of years ago, it would seem, women were already swearing by beer as a magic potion for their tresses.

So it’s hardly surprising that more and more hotels and spas are incorporating beer in their wellness programmes. After all, if beer is good for your gums and hair, why not for all the rest of your body too?

An opinion obviously shared by Spa Beerland Prague. In Czechia’s capital, you will find this spa of a rather different kind. No more splashing around in whirlpools filled with boring old chlorinated water. Instead, there are whirl-tuns here. Natural ingredients like hop extracts, brewer’s yeast and malt are added to the water, and are reputed to be particularly conducive to relaxation.
And for all those of you who like things a bit hotter, there’s a hop sauna ready and waiting. Designed to resemble a beer barrel, this sauna is quite an experience visually as well. And what’s the best ending to one of these wellness days? A self-tapped beer of course – as much as you want, by the way …😉. And some mouth-watering home-made beer bread to go with it.

The Scottish BrewDog Brewery is going one step further: at the end of September 2018, the world’s first Craft Beer Hotel will open its doors in Columbus, Ohio. Including a beer spa, but then you guessed that already! The plans are to offer not only beer-filled whirlpools, but entire wellness treatments. Starting with a barley malt massage, then a “Hoppy Feet” pedicure, all the way through to facials where everything revolves around hops. And if you’re not perfectly happy by now, you certainly will be at the prospect of an ice-cold beer: every room is going to have a dispenser for serving your BrewDog beer – and a beer fridge stocked with the best craft beers from all over the world will be provided as well. You will find beer-based shampoo and shower gel in the bathrooms, and (of course), the catering will likewise be heavily laced with beer. The breakfast already tempts you to make a beer-suffused start to the day. That would be one of the main attractions for me!
The brewery belonging to the hotel is already scheduled to open in mid-2017. And from some of the hotel rooms, guests will later on be able to see directly inside the brewery. This all sounds rather fascinating – so I must check my diary for September 2018…

But it doesn’t necessarily have to be the USA if you want to experience some beer-themed wellness. At Gut Riedelsbach in the Bavarian Forest, beer-lovers will get more than their money’s worth, and not only for the culinary delights on offer. Whether it’s a Beer-Themed Feel-Good Weekend, a Beer-Bonding Break for Two or for the more energetic among you a Beer-Fuelled Ramble – there are plenty of attractive options to choose from. As a special treat, your best bet is to pamper yourself with a beer-based chocolate massage. Pretty hard to imagine a better combination, isn’t it?!
At the Landhotel Kummerower Hof in Brandenburg, guests can wind down from the day by luxuriating in a yeast or spent-grains bath. Beer is also used for skin-peeling treatments. In fact, there’s something here for everyone, beer-lovers most of all.

If you have any tips for further beer-themed wellness and spa experiences, please share them with us in the comments. (Insider) recommendations are always more than welcome!

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