Healthy hedonists can now savour their wine tours with a dose of wellness thanks to top-class spas in leading wine regions. With products rooted as deeply in their terroir as their vines, made from vine extracts and local ingredients, you can enjoy wine from the outside and the inside.
From 12th-century monasteries to ultra-modern resorts, here are ten destinations that add a dose a wellness to your wine tour or a glass of wine to your wellness retreat.
Les Sources de Caudalie was the pioneering force of the wine spa concept. Vinothérapie® is at the core of their philosophy. The Cathiard family bought Château Smith Haut Lafitte in Bordeaux in 1990, and opened the Les Sources de Caudalie hotel and spa in 1999, inviting guests to enjoy the French wine country lifestyle.
The hotel takes its name from the range of grape-based cosmetics used in all the treatments, from wine baths to exfoliating massages with fresh grapes. After Bordeaux, they opened Les Sources de Cheverny in the Loire, and have recently purchased hotels in Burgundy and Alsace. Keep an eye out for new wine spa experiences there in 2024.
Hotel Marqués de Riscal in Rioja, Spain, is also home to a Caudalie spa. This stunning 21st-century masterpiece is the only hotel designed by architect Frank Gehry, a daring concept for a vineyard that traces its history back to the 1800s. Opened in 2006, it became a regional icon in the ‘City of Wine’.
Alongside the grape-based treatments, the spa has a pediluvium, a unique traditional foot bath – a nod to the nearby Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route. The hotel is in the perfect location to discover the vineyards of Rioja or to spend two to six days enjoying the completely personalised health cures.
Water into wine
Castilla Termal Monasterio de Valbuena is in Ribera del Duero, another famous Spanish wine region. The five-star hotel and spa is in the spectacular 12th-century Cistercian monastery of Santa María de Valbuena, were the monks once made wine.
Medicinal mineral water from the San Bernardo spring, a 386 metre-deep aquifer, feeds directly into the spa. In the 12th century, this same water was used to irrigate the vineyards. The sodium-, calcium- and sulphate-rich waters are recommended for digestive issues and are also good for the liver – perfectly aligned with a wine region!
In the heart of Beaune, the wine capital of Burgundy, Hôtel Le Cep is a longstanding reference for lovers of the region’s wines. The 16th-century buildings include a unique spa, named Spa Holistique Marie de Bourgogne, after the Duchess of Burgundy who inherited the duchy at just 19 years old.
Treatment products are made from extracts of Pinot Noir, the famous red grape of Burgundy, and blackcurrants, used to make the local Cassis liqueur. It opened in 2016, combining traditional massage and high-tech treatments, winning two titles at the World Luxury Spa Awards in 2019. In 2020, the Ayurvedic Centre opened, bringing ancient yogic treatments to a very modern concept of wellness and offering complete retreat programmes for weary wine tasters.
The Royal Treatment
If you prefer your wine-based spa treatments with a view, travel to the ultra-modern Royal Champagne Hotel & Spa in the heart of Champagne. Every room in the hotel enjoys the spectacular view of the Montagne de Reims between the towns of Reims and Epernay.
Biologique Recherche products will awaken your natural sparkle. The treatment rooms, fitness centre, wood-lined yoga studio, eucalyptus-infused sauna and mosaic-tiled hammam offer personalised wellness treatments. Swim in the indoor or outdoor pool then sip your Champagne, or freshly squeezed fruit and vegetable juice, as you enjoy the view over the vines.
For a very different spa view, travel to the Entre Cielos Wine Hotel & Spa in Mendoza, Argentina, where the stunning snow-capped Andes are the backdrop. Winning the South American ‘Luxury Boutique Spa’ accolade in the 2017 Luxury Spa Awards, the vinotherapy treatments include wine baths, grape-seed body scrubs and massages and the only authentic six-stage traditional hammam in Latin America.
Created from a long-abandoned winery, this modern resort is now at the centre of a working Malbec vineyard. Stay in the futuristic ‘Vineyard Loft’, suspended on stilts above the 3.2-hectare vineyard, where you can enjoy your very own private hot tub for an intimate spa experience.
Immortelle in Corsica
This Mediterranean island off the south of France is famous for its rugged mountainous landscape and increasingly popular wines. The Domaine de Murtoli is a five-star destination tucked away in the south of the island – a unique collection of 20 beautifully restored 17th-century shepherds’ cottages. The natural vegetal treatment rooms of the beach spa are hidden amongst flower groves. The products use essential oils from these local blooms including the famous ‘immortelle’.
An 18th-century Provençal farm in 23ha of vines near the village of Ménerbes is home to La Bastide de Marie. It has typical southern French style inside and out, with alleys of cypress trees, rows of lavender bushes, olive trees and of course vines. Close to the Alps, the Pure Altitude Spa brings the mountains to the vineyard. Products made in their sister spa in the Alps from the mountain edelweiss flower are complemented by local lavender for relaxing massages. During the harvest you can join the team picking the grapes, but all year round you can taste the wines directly in the cellars.
It takes a village
In Brunello di Montalcino, Massimo and Chiara Ferragamo have created the 2,000-hectare Rosewood Castiglion del Bosco resort. The 800-year-old borgo village is at its heart – you’ll find the winery of course but also suites and villas, ancient castle ruins, a medieval church, two restaurants, an organic kitchen garden, a cooking school and Italy’s only private golf club. The wellbeing philosophy of the spa connects every aspect of this estate, from the preserved natural environment, to the healthy organic food, local wine and outdoor activities.
It’s also a showcase for Italian chic, as you would expect from the Ferragamo family. The spa uses products made from Tuscan grape pomace with vitamin-rich grape polyphenols. ‘The Divine’, a red wine body ritual includes an exfoliating grape gel and perfumed pomace oil massage and of course, a glass of the house Brunello di Montalcino.
Sleep with Six Senses
The stunning Six Senses in the Douro Valley, Portugal is an estate dating back to 1464 and taking you back in time. Placed high above a curve in the Douro River, the elegant 19th-century mansion, a traditional wine estate with gardens and lakes, is set in vine-covered hills. In its time it was the most fashionable quinta in the Douro Valley. In 2015, Six Senses completely refurbished the property, bringing it back to its former glory and wining the Best Achievement in Design in Virtuoso’s annual ‘Best of the Best’ Awards in 2017. After touring neighbouring vineyards, come back here to rest.
The Sleep experience offers guests the expertise of a Sleep Doctor. Calling on the resources of the spa from yoga nidra, meditation, nutritional advice to gentle exercise, they will curate a personalised programme to improve your sleep quality. Add in the enormous comfy beds, handmade mattresses, temperature regulating pillows, duvets and organic linens and you will sleep like a baby.
Meditate in secret gardens or in your private hot tub. Swim in the indoor pool with garden views, underwater sound therapy and massage jets, or venture outside for forest bathing. An organic herb garden provides ingredients for the spa’s Alchemy Bar, where potions of herbs, salt, grapes and exotic ingredients are individually blended for scrubs and masks. The Nail Bar even offers wine and cheese tastings during the treatment.