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Why We Love This Snowy Getaway For Non-Skiers

For a revitalising snowy break without skis, look no further than My Arbor, a treetop spa retreat in Italy’s South Tyrolean mountains where wellbeing is centre stage.

In amongst the Plose mountain pines on the northernmost tip of Italy, My Arbor invites you to slow down, to take time for yourself and to reconnect with nature. The notion of grounding or ‘rooting’ is central to the hotel’s philosophy and a large part of what makes it such a tranquil haven of rest and relaxation.

The impressive exterior is built on 34-metre-high stilts; a treehouse standing in perfect harmony with the surrounding pines. The eye-catching structure was the result of a competition launched by the Huber family but, far from being a gimmick, the treehouse design creates a sense of lofty spaciousness that enhances the overall guest experience. Interiors speak to a chic European aesthetic of understated luxury: reclaimed wood furnishings, clean lines, natural colours and stones abound.

My Arbor is still run by the Huber family, and their focus on individuality and excellent hospitality gives the place real soul and personality. It’s somewhere you want to bed-in, unwind and stay a while.

The Vibe

Arriving at My Arbor is to enter the warm embrace of comfort and new levels of rest and relaxation. From the indulgent menu to the daily programme of wellness activities, it’s all about living in the present moment.

Guests are encouraged to abandon routine and invited to follow their own rhythm. Some sleep till noon, others embark on ambitious mountain hikes or cultural tours of the local town. It’s this sense of freedom that leaves you feeling revived in mind, body and spirit when you reluctantly walk out of the door to head home.


The Rooms

A room with a view is always memorable, but one overlooking the impressive peaks of the Dolomites is unforgettable. At My Arbor all rooms have south-facing balconies with panoramic views of the Eisack valley and snow-capped mountains beyond.

Nest Suites feature wood furnishings, natural colour combinations and day beds that double up as cosy reading spots, while large bathrooms have rainfall showers with Vitalis amenities and underfloor heating.

The Hangout Suites have sumptuous baths and room enough to feel as though you’re in your own alpine chalet. If you’re really looking to splurge, plump for one of the three Treetop Suites, each boasting a south-facing terrace as well as a private whirlpool and sauna.

Pool + Spa

Padding around the expansive spa in one of the hotel’s ultra-comfy robes is a highlight of any stay here. In both winter and summer you’ll find guests reclining on daybeds around the indoor pool or in one of the hotel’s many dedicated relaxation rooms. If it’s total seclusion you’re after, book one of the ten private (and heated) cuddle nests which gaze over the valley below — perfect for watching the sun go down.

There’s also a steamy outdoor pool, a gym and ten therapy rooms offering tree-inspired treatments. One floor down, you’ll find an impressive suite of saunas, a large steam room, jacuzzi and cold pool. Make sure you experience one of the hotel’s fabled sauna infusions, which involves the resident sauna master wafting aromatic scents to energising music. Be warned, this floor is a textile-free zone!

Food + Drink

The gastronomic experience at My Arbor is equally memorable. Breakfast and dinner are served in the hotel’s restaurant, featuring banquettes, intimate booths and sweeping Alpine views, while lunch and teatime snacks are served in the glass-fronted club lounge.

The menu comes courtesy of Brixen-born head chef Matthias Hinteregger, who favours seasonal, local produce such as apples, cheese and speck. Sun-ripened fruit and vegetables as well as delicious olive oils are delivered directly from the Huber family farm in Albisano on the shores of Lake Garda.

Languorous buffet breakfasts involving homemade jams, patisseries and juices are de riguer here, as are indulgent but delicately portioned five-course dinners combining South Tyrolean cuisine, Italian classics and innovative international dishes. Must-orders include the pumpkin ravioli, the cheese dumplings in beef broth and the chef’s signature apple strudel.

The wine list is impressively extensive and includes a good selection of local whites and reds by the glass. If in doubt, ask one of the in-house sommeliers for their pairing recommendations, shared without pretension. They’ll also show you round the impressive cellar if you’re so inclined.

Pre-dinner cocktails and nightcaps are best enjoyed in the hotel bar. Although this is located within eyesight of the main reception, the roaring fire, plush chairs and soft lighting give it a welcoming sense of cosy. Cocktail enthusiasts should try the Basil Smash or My Arbor Negroni, while beer lovers can opt for a local brew such as Forst.

The Little Extras

All the thinking has been done for you at My Arbor, freeing you up to enjoy the wellbeing experience to the maximum. The daily wellness classes, for instance, are all included in the room rate and do not need to be booked in advance. Eliminating booking and cancellation stress is surprisingly liberating. On arrival you’ll be given a tote with robe and slippers and complimentary Brixen Card, which gives you access to the Plose gondola and chairlifts, among other local landmarks.

Then there’s the staff, who feel more like a family than a group of young professionals. Delightful and extraordinarily helpful, they strike the perfect balance between friendliness and professionalism — and never feel overbearing or intrusive. Impressively, nearly all speak fluent German, Italian and English too.

My Arbor is an adults-only hotel, so a sense of calm permeates all the communal spaces. But it’s not all hushed whispers and spa music. Come evening, the bar has an alluring buzz — and live music on Saturdays. Ask at reception for other seasonal events like wine tasting.

The To-Do List

Eat. Sleep. Spa. Repeat. And when you’re ready, venture outdoors. The crisp mountain air is instantly revitalising. South Tyrol is a year-round destination so there’s skiing and sledging in winter; hiking and biking in autumn; and forest bathing in summer.

You won’t want to leave the hotel, but culture vultures should spend an afternoon exploring Brixen. Its historical centre has a 14th-century cathedral and a fortress as well as a string of cutesy eating and drinking spots. If you’re short for time, head straight to the Augustinian Monastery which has an impressive rococo library.

In winter, take the gondola up the Plose, which is a 10-minute walk from the hotel, to explore the scenic hiking trails and network of toboggan tracks. Although not the central focus of My Arbor, there is also ample skiing to while away an afternoon or two. Enjoy a gluhwein at La Finestra, before feasting on hearty mountain classics at Rifugio Rossalm.

Getting There

The nearest airports are Innsbruck, Bolzano and Verona, while the nearest train station is Brixen. The hotel can organise transfers at an additional cost.


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