Inside the immaculate grounds of Borgo Egnazia, the award-winning resort that’s put this part of Puglia on the map, you’ll find the earthy and luxurious Vair spa.
Puglia is sat at the heel of Italy’s boot and has become a fast favourite with the fashion crowd and families alike, who are attracted by its surprisingly verdant landscapes, delicious local cuisine and – now – its wellness offering.
Loved for its innovative health retreats, Roman bath rituals and nurturing environment, the spa is quite different from the normal ‘hotel spa’ offering. Everything here is highly personalised with a focus on traditional Puglian wisdom, techniques and ingredients. And it’s gorgeous too.
We visited to try out one of the signature aromatic treatments… .
SHOP THE ESSENTIALS
In spite of its size (2,800 square metres), Vair Spa still manages to feel intimate. With an ethos that focuses on happiness, the spa combines the culture and traditions of Puglia with aspects of emotional health analysis.
You start the experience at the sunlit lobby area before descending down cream stone steps into the basement spa where candles flicker and birdsong provides a subtle soundtrack. Walls and floors are cream sandstone throughout. Barefoot therapists in Grecian gowns guide you through the labyrinth of cocooning wellness spaces, from the Roman baths and indoor pool, to the infrared sauna and meditation room. The spa has 11 treatment rooms, a gym and a cryotherapy cabin.
Vair Spa is all about ‘‘re-establishing your internal compass and reconnecting with your own happiness.’’ The literal meaning of Vair is ‘truth’ in the local dialect. Inside, the space is very peaceful and has an exclusive feel to it. There is a real sense of calm and you’re allowed time and space to enjoy the stunning surroundings without fuss.
Personalisation is a genuine focus and the spa menu is tweaked to suit each guest. They do this by starting each treatment with a 20-minute holistic health consultation so that the therapist can personalise it as much as possible. The consultation also includes an ‘aroma intro’ where you are asked to sniff particular essential oils (woody, floral, citrus, for example) and explain how they made you feel.
Vair Wellness holidays run all year round, from happiness clinics and women-only retreats, to an exclusive ‘Blue Zone’ Longevity Experience that teaches guests how to live a ‘better, healthier and longer life’ based on principles followed by the world’s longest-living people.
Treatments – which range from aromatic massages to Roman steam baths – are both scientifically advanced and soothing. We tried one of the most popular, the Annaske (smell) experience. This centred around an ‘inspiring peaceful journey of aromas’.
After selecting your essential oils, the nearly two-hour treatment starts with a salt scrub, moves on to a soft mud wrap to purify the skin and then finishes with an uplifting massage. We loved the energising feel post treatment and the locally sourced oils and ingredients, which smelt heavenly. Afterwards, you can retreat to the relaxation room with warm beds, fresh herbal tea and dried fruit.
THE BEAUTY KIT
Vair Spa uses local ingredients for their treatments; from velvety Puglian olive oil and fresh sage leaves, to honey, mud clay, lemons and fig milk. For beauty they also have a nail lab, hair care and makeup room where they use toxin-free, Made in Italy products.
For complete privacy, the spa offers individual treatment options such as the flotation tank, infrared cabin and meditation room – all are designed for deep relaxation and reflection. Perfect if you’re feeling a bit jet-lagged or anti-social.
We also loved their interesting wellness classes, from laughing music therapy, to speed walking around the olive groves and mindfulness.
CF SPA TIP
Try the Roman Bath ritual with a group of friends for an indulgent catch up.
NEED TO KNOW
Treatments start from £110. The Annaske treatment costs £268.
Borgo Egnazia offers rooms from £219 per night on a bed and breakfast basis.
Address: Strada Comunale Egnazia, 72015, Fasano, Brindisi, Puglia, Italy
Tel: +39 080 225 5455
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