Asian Sensibility at Newest Luxury Spa in Swiss Alps

Saturday Jun 30, 2012

GSTAAD, Switzerland - The Alpina Gstaad, the newest luxury hotel to open in this Swiss Alpine village in 100 years, will feature a Six Senses Spa. Melding Swiss Alpine architecture with an Asian sensibility, P49 Deesign is creating a tranquil sanctuary in 21,500 square feet which is all curved walls and flowing spaces. Guests will literally be transported into a different world.

After entering a monumental floor-to-ceiling oak door, guests are greeted by a Tree of Life at the reception area. Tree branches lead guests along a softly-lit corridor past one of the Six Senses symbols to the changing rooms. There, soft light glows from honey-colored marble sconces on plinths of rough timber. Hand basins are carved from granite boulders.

The Tree of Life design element re-emerges at the beginning of the treatment room area. In these 12 treatment rooms, therapists offer a variety of holistic treatments.

The walls and floor of the Hammam are made of a special Swiss limestone from Laufen. During treatments the large raised stone bed in the center of the room will also be heated. The treatment begins with hot steam and finishes with a cooling shower radiating down from the ceiling. Above the octagonal heated pool, in the Flotation Room, is a light developed by Nik Schweiger to put guests in a relaxed state of mind. In the Salt Room, guests can enjoy a foot massage, while in the Color Therapy Room - a first for Gstaad - they can have their energy balanced, be it physical, emotional, mental or spiritual.

In the relaxation area, guests can warm themselves with stones from a heated pit. A vertical garden hangs on one wall, while against another, firewood is stacked ornamentally with bookcases flanking both sides. A sauna, a steam room and hot and cold plunge pools are adjacent to the changing rooms which are equipped with two types of showers that provide four different shower experiences. The women's area has Six Senses sensory pods with water-heated beds.

The indoor swimming pool brings together traditional Swiss design and the dramatic power of the surrounding Alps. Massive boulders of limestone jut from one wall with water flowing through. The pool's curved side has an infinity edge while the opposite side offers a lap lane. Two Jacuzzis border the pool. The ceiling of fir wood has a commanding skylight bringing in plenty of natural light.

A hallmark of the Six Senses Spa at The Alpina Gstaad will be locally-inspired treatments using indigenous plants and Alpine herbs. Life coaching, detox programs, nutritional consultation and specialist therapies by visiting practitioners will be offered. Treatments will cover the spectrum:

Ø Massages - Shiatsu, Swedish, Thai and signature Six Senses
Ø Body Care - Salt scrubs, seaweed and Swiss Alpine herbal wraps
Ø Beauty Treatments - Facials, manicures and pedicures
Ø Mind & Body - Acupuncture, qi gong, reiki, tai chi, yoga
Ø Treatment Baths - Detoxifying, exotic flower and seaweed
In addition to a full-equipped Fitness Center, The Alpina Gstaad will offer a comprehensive program of outdoor activities including hiking, mountain biking and skiing. The spa will also have dedicated areas for children.

"We are delighted to be working with The Alpina Gstaad and team. Their goal is to set a completely new standard of distinction and authenticity. This goes hand-in-hand with the Six Senses Spas’ philosophy of creating harmonious and sensual spaces which adapt seamlessly with the local culture and surroundings and deliver unique and memorable spa experiences. Our spa at The Alpina Gstaad will carefully merge local traditions with Six Senses’ signature features to delight guests from around the world," said Bernhard Bohnenberger, President of Six Senses Resorts and Spas.

"The Alpina Gstaad will be the first luxury hotel in Gstaad to have a spa managed by one of the world’s foremost names in wellness," explained Onno Poortier, the hotel owner’s advisor and representative. "We chose to partner with Six Senses because we share the same philosophy and vision: to offer our very discerning clientele a new kind of spa experience, one that is truly holistic, deeply personalized and providing a life-changing rejuvenation," according to Poortier.

The Alpina Gstaad is set on five acres in Oberbort, the exclusive hilltop area of the village which is in Saanenland in the heart of the Bernese Alps. Part of a $337 million luxury development which includes private chalets and apartments, The Alpina Gstaad is a contemporary interpretation of traditional Swiss architecture incorporating local materials and authentic Alpine style.
Blocks of Ringgenberg limestone, the rich brown stone from local quarries; hundred-year-old fir wood, gathered from old Alpine farm houses, and natural slate have been used in the construction. Huge windows allow for plenty of natural light and offer views of the surrounding mountains.

The Alpina Gstaad will have three restaurants: MEGU offering a Japanese menu, a traditional stübli with Swiss dishes and one restaurant featuring international cuisine. The luxury property will feature a bar and lounge, a wine-tasting room, a private cinema, a cigar room, a ballroom and several boardrooms. The 21,500-square-foot Six Senses Spa will include a fitness center and an 82-foot lap pool. A large outdoor swimming pool will be set in the gardens. The 56 spacious rooms and suites - all with balconies - range from 333 square feet to 4,305 square feet.

Six Senses Resorts & Spas has earned a global following, providing award-winning guest experiences in some of the world’s most beautiful locations. With properties under management in Asia, the Middle East, the Americas and Europe, the name Six Senses is synonymous with a unique style of luxury - authentic, relaxed and in tune with the surrounding environment.

Each spa has been designed to reflect the ability to adapt seamlessly to host cultures in surroundings which evoke relaxation and rejuvenation. Six Senses Spas offer a wide range of holistic face and body therapies and beauty treatments administered under the guidance of expert therapists. Spa products are made only from natural ingredients in harmony with the environment.

Six Senses manages 10 resorts and 28 spas in 20 countries around the world, with another 15 under construction or development, including China and Vietnam.

P49 Deesign is one of Thailand’s leading interior design practices specializing in high quality hotels and resorts. Established in Thailand 25 years ago, the company has worked with many four- and five-star hospitality groups and has a thorough understanding of the luxury hospitality industry.

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