The 7 strangest new health holidays
Climbing coconut trees, live violin performances and vagina-strengthening are just some of 2016’s most eye-opening new holiday health options.
Coconut tree climbing
Ever clambered up a coconut tree? It’s an integral part of new 'Maldivian Warrior Workouts' at five-star island resort Amilla Fushi’s JAVVU spa, along with pulling and pushing on palm trunks and sea-swimming.
Once you’ve successfully become a Maldivian warrior, revert to being a British sloth: Amilla's beautiful residences each have private pools, while its coral reef is UNESCO-protected and the head chef is Michelin-starred Aussie genius Luke Mangan.
Forget, rain-water sounds, panpipes and Enya—spa music is getting much more exciting.
During 45-minute Violin Touch treatments at Zurich's Dolder Grand hotel, violinist Debora Vonwiller plays live in the room as a masseuse rubs the lucky client.
Why? Vonwiller claims that vibrations from live music can evoke a strong emotional response, and help to deepen relaxation.
Image via Armathwaite Hall
Hailing from Japan, forest bathing involves ‘dissociating oneself from urban environments’.
Or, in plain English, quietly walking through woodland, and relishing a mixture of mindfulness and nature.
While you could obviously do this yourself, hotels offering guided experiences for forest-bathing virgins include Austria’s Hotel Forsthofgut, whose spa claims to be Europe’s first 'wellness centre forest', and the Lake District's Armathwaite Hall.
Hot golf balls
Hot stone therapy? So last year.
Hot golf ball therapy’s the new thing. Guests at the Atarmia Spa in Abu Dhabi's Park Hyatt, Saadiyat Island now have the option of 90-minute, deep-tissue Quiro Golf massages.
Rescued from a life of bunkers and birdies at an adjacent 18-hole course, the balls are warmed with menthol and then rolled over tired muscles. You won’t feel under par for long.
Whether cannabis permeates the skin is unclear, but that hasn’t stopped the Primal Wellness day spa from building an entire menu around the stupefying drug.
Buoyed by the legalisation of weed in its Colorado home state, Primal Wellness now offers marijuana massages. You began by toking on a hemp vape (albeit one with no THCs, so you won’t get high).
Then cannabis-infused oil, scented a number of possible ways—the house mix contains orange, lemon-lime and grapefruit notes—is kneaded into your skin.
Ganja-sponsored facials, mani/pedis and meditation and yoga are also available.
Strengthen that vagina
How strong are your vaginal muscles? Find out at forthcoming Noble Self, which aspires to become London’s first spa and wellness centre to offer ‘vumbuilding’ when opening later in 2016.
Hailing from Russia, this approach is considered good preparation for childbirth, and helps guard against evils like urinary incontinence, infantilism and laxity.
Altogether less intimate is ‘Shaping’. Here, a series of bespoke aerobic-inspired exercises—combined with ‘deep, introspective soul work’—supposedly help your body to realise its best shape. Though we suspect things are probably best left as nature intended.
A snail’s face
How do you feel about snails? No, not eating them—how do you feel about them crawling all over your face?
Rejuvenation experts in Japan have decided that having molluscs leave slimy trails on your noggin is the very ultimate in skincare.
The snails’ mucus apparently contains anti-ageing antioxidants that kill off any dead dermis.
Lasting five minutes, the Celebrity Escargot Course facial is on offer at Tokyo’s Ci:z Labo. Snail-slime extract creams are on sale for cheats.