From cultural staycations in quaint Medieval cities to beach resorts on golden sands, Europe is a diverse continent. It has climates ranging from Nordic arctic ice to scorching Italian islands and as many holiday options to match. Europe’s rich history of ‘bath town’ spa retreats around natural springs, as well as making use of the natural landscape for fun excursions—hello Alpine skiing—has developed into a passion of an array of wellness activities, from yoga to HIIT. So, we’ve rounded up our favourite luxury wellness retreats in Europe to give you a little travel inspiration for your continental wellness wanderlust.
This article was originally published on August 1, 2019, by Amanda Sheppard and was last updated on August 5, 2022.
Lesser-known than its counterpart Lake Como, Lake Garda holds no less beauty or charm. Perched atop the lake, Lefay Resort is surrounded by 11 hectares of natural beauty. Thus, it benefits from the Mediterranean climate, culture and laidback lifestyle. Retreat-goers also enjoy a guided walk through the therapeutic garden. Moreover, there’s a range of activities to help restore and rebalance energy levels.
Clinique la Prairie
This wellness resort sits in the Swiss town of Verbier. Clinique la Prairie is a leading wellness facility known for creating cellular therapy. With over 50 doctors and 200 health and wellness professionals, these medical wellness pioneers have offered guests in search of retreat the perfect place to call home. It’s been open since 1931. Its programmes are inclusive of a wide range of relaxing spa and massage treatments in a state-of-the-art facility. Plus, you’ll have access to a leading team of professionals to help you make the most of your wellness journey.
Prices start from US$13,095 | Book now on Compare Retreats
On the Andalucian coastline, Finca Cortesin is a golf spa and resort near the village of Cesares in Spain. The wellness resort is a haven for those with a passion for interiors. Its no-phone policy makes it the perfect place for a digital detox. Spa Retreats are inclusive of accommodation, spa treatments and access to the resort’s famed water suite. But don’t forget to visit the ‘snow cave’ and saltwater pool. There’s also the option to go at your own pace and opt for a longer stay without a fixed agenda.
Le Sireneuse Positano
With a history dating back more than a decade, Le Sireneuse is an award-winning resort situated on Italy’s Amalfi coast. The hotel boasts private boats available to guests looking to explore the region’s hidden gems. Meanwhile, its interiors (designed by Gae Aulenti) will have many struggling to find a reason to leave. Moreover, its annual retreats include accommodation, guided treks, nutritious meals and spa treatments.
In the western reaches of Austria, just outside the city of Innsbruck, Lanserhof Lans is an idyllic resort. It’s surrounded by forestry and sits underneath Patscherkofel Mountain. Moreover, its tranquil setting makes it the perfect place to find your focus. So, the resort adopts a unique approach to wellness, combining modern medicine with traditional healing approaches and homoeopathy.
Prices start from US$3,811 | Book now on Compare Retreats
Six Senses Douro Valley
Set in a renovated 19th-century manor house in the midst of Portugal‘s lush Douro Valley—famed for its fertile soil and verdant vineyards—Six Senses luxury European retreat has a reputation for sustainability and lifestyle wellness. Focused spa programmes include local therapies using olives, grapes and citrus products in its nature-inspired spa. Moreover, guests can enjoy activities in the indoor and outdoor pools. Dedicated wellness retreats combine philosophies of nutrition, movement and relaxation for a restorative wellness experience. But don’t forget to explore the historic town nearby.
The Ranch Dolomites
The Ranch has developed a loyal legion of A-list followers thanks to its high-energy, high-reward retreats in California. It has since brought its unique brand of wellness (including its signature plant-based cuisine and combination of group and personal approaches to fitness) to the Dolomites region of northern Italy. Based in the luxury hotel Rosa Alpina, guests spend their days hiking through UNESCO World Heritage landscapes, engaging in restorative yoga, strengthening and toning muscles in core and weight training sessions, and recharging with a restorative massage each day. So, you’ll leave feeling rejuvenated.
Prices start from US$8,700 | Book now on Compare Retreats
The Retreat at Blue Lagoon
A far cry from the tropical beach fronts we usually associated with a wellness escape, Iceland’s Blue Lagoon has long been revered for its naturally healing volcanic springs. Full of detoxifying and rejuvenating silica, and algae minerals, the Blue Lagoon’s Retreat Spa offers a range of skincare and spa therapies focused on anti-ageing and beauty. But for an ultra-luxurious experience, check into the private Lava Cove spa suite, which has its own private thermal pool for you to relax undisturbed.
Elounda SA Hotels & Resorts
This five-star facility on the Greek island of Crete is known for its golf and spa amenities. Comprised of three separate hotels—Porto Elounda, Porto Peninsula, and Elounda Mare—guests can choose which resort best suits their needs for their retreat stay. Spa treatments include aromatherapy lymphatic massage, abdominal massage, spirulina wrap, anti-cellulite massage and a 90-minute, firming algotherapy, among other treatments at the on-site Six Senses massage. So, it’s a true spa paradise.
Prices start from US$672 | Book now on Compare Retreats
Sha Wellness Clinic
This innovative medical wellness clinic combines cutting-edge science with holistic healing modalities for a comprehensive health retreat. Specialising in anti-ageing, chronic illnesses and preventable lifestyle diseases, the retreat uses macrobiotic diet principles, non-invasive medical treatments and rejuvenating spa therapies to help guests find a healthier way to live beyond the retreats. Retreats gives guests the perfect introduction to Sha’s wellness philosophies. Moreover, it offers a combination of spa treatments, a personalised diet plan and lifestyle workshops in a five-star setting. So, it’s one of the best luxury wellness retreats in Europe.
Prices start from US$2,892 | Book now on Compare Retreats
COMO Castello Del Nero
Located among Tuscany’s rolling hills and green countryside just beyond Florence and Siena, sits COMO Castello Del Nero. Stay in a luxuriously renovated 12th-century castle, complete with Renaissance frescoes and baroque furnishings designed by interior designer Paola Navone, while you unwind with Michelin-starred dining and COMO Shambhala Retreat wellness treatments. Massages and Guinot facials are just a few of the highlights, with specialised programmes for mums-to-be and jetlag, while the thermal and water suites offer aromatic steam rooms, vitality pools, an ice fountain and 25-metre outdoor pool. Yoga sessions and personal trainers at the gym provide a more invigorating workout for those with fitness targets, but active explorers may enjoy hiking through the Tuscan hills for a unique cultural experience.
With retreat locations in Ibiza and Marbella, this luxe Spanish retreat offers hardcore, intensive HIIT boot camps at luxurious beach-side resorts to whip you into shape. So, the short mid-week and weekend programmes include a mix of yoga, tai chi, Pilates, cycling, running, boxing, core workouts, functional training, hiking, and water activities, along with one-to-one sessions to help you improve where you need to. Nutritional workshops ensure you’re eating right to support your lifestyle, and your hosts Claire and James will keep checking in with you even after the retreat is over to make sure you’re still on the right track. So, it’s one of the world’s best fitness retreats.
Prices start from US$2,048 | Book now on Compare Retreats