Where to find winter wellness in Auckland

The scent of cloves wafts through the steam, gently weaving its warmth around me and kissing my skin.

It takes me to a place of sweet memories, Christmas treats and homemade crafts, orange pomanders and gingerbread. But it’s the middle of a Southern Hemisphere winter, Christmas isn’t for months, and my childhood home is 1,000 km away.

But I’m in a dreamy setting nonetheless, in my current Auckland home at Cordis Auckland’s Chuan Spa, sitting in a fragrant steam room that smells of sugar and spice and all things pleasant.

The spa has everything you need for a wellness overhaul – a rooftop pool, hot spa, sauna, snail shower, the aforementioned herbal steam room (but smells like cloves) and a big bowl of ice cubes for those brave enough to cool off after sweating out the week’s toxins left behind.

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After testing each of these options, I headed inside the spa for one of its winter offerings – a winter package that includes a hot stone back, neck and shoulder massage, a head massage with heated Chinese herbs and a leg and foot massage. .

I’m taken to a dimly lit therapy room, where there’s a mosaic-style tub, large walk-in shower, and massage tables, plus towels artfully arranged in a bird’s eye pattern. For the next 90 minutes, I drift into a semi-conscious state, not asleep, but in such deep relaxation that by the end of it, I feel like I’ve taken a restorative afternoon nap. Every limb has been massaged and oiled, my scalp feels renewed and my face looks ironed.

Chuan Spa has a number of different therapy rooms, including a room for couples treatments.

Provided

Chuan Spa has a number of different therapy rooms, including a room for couples treatments.

At the end of spa treatments at Chuan Spa, guests are invited to sit in ergonomic, plush daybeds separated by sheer curtains, under-knee bolsters, a healthy snack, and hot ginger tea. There’s no rush to leave and despite a well-rested outing, it’s so peaceful I could almost enjoy another nap.

Fortunately, I was staying on site, in the hotel’s new Pinnacle tower. Staying in an executive suite meant I had access to the wing’s exclusive Club Lounge and free evening canapes and bubbles, so my nap was going to have to wait. Free snacks? Always the priority. All this relaxation had whetted the appetite.

The 17-story Pinnacle Tower opened in December 2021, adding 244 additional premium rooms and suites to the hotel. The wing has an extensive curated art collection, with 46 works by nine artists, making it one of New Zealand’s largest curated and commercially commissioned art collections.

Guests staying in the Pinnacle Tower at Cordis Auckland have access to the Club Lounge on Level 14.

Provided

Guests staying in the Pinnacle Tower at Cordis Auckland have access to the Club Lounge on Level 14.

Tower rooms are positioned to allow maximum light and views; look across the harbor and harbor bridge to Waitematā, Rangitoto, or to sights like Mt Eden and One Tree Hill.

I’m staying in the Executive Suite, a terrific one-bedroom corner suite with its own kitchenette, living room and balcony, spacious bedroom, full bathroom with double sinks, shower and tub, with a private toilet in the bathroom.

These rooms are a more upscale offering than the hotel’s existing suites, have a private VIP entrance separate from the main hotel, and guests enjoy special perks such as the Club Lounge on level 14, the lounge New Zealand’s largest and most exclusive club.

The Executive Suite has its own kitchenette, living room, balcony, separate bedroom and large en-suite bathroom.

Provided

The Executive Suite has its own kitchenette, living room, balcony, separate bedroom and large en-suite bathroom.

For guests in executive rooms, aperitifs and canapes are served from 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. each evening. When I heard there would be canapes I thought maybe cheese and crackers and some salmon blinis.

However, the evening canapes provided more than food for an evening meal, with hot options such as chicken risotto, grilled halloumi, lamb koftas and prawn twisters, in addition to options of gourmet salads, sushi, charcuterie, and an array of cheeses — and top-ups of bubbly throughout. There is also breakfast and afternoon tea available.

Back in the sequel, Cordis Auckland has a range of tools available to help you get the most out of your life. You can order a bath package from Chuan Spa to use in your own room, which includes massage oil, bath bomb and hand cream, or borrow a yoga mat and yoga ball for a few gentle movements in the evening.

There’s the option to order healthy meals for in-room dining, plus QR codes that lead to more sleep tips and expert advice, all designed to help you fall asleep.

Cordis Auckland's rooftop pool is heated all year round.

Provided

Cordis Auckland’s rooftop pool is heated all year round.

I opted out of the evening bath as I was already well rested from the day’s spa therapies, but I still managed to melt into bed and drift into twinkling land with no problem. of eye.

The next morning, after a coffee on the balcony in the morning sun, we went back up to the spa for another dip in the pool, another bath in the spa and a final sweat in the steam room filled with cloves and a delicious warmth. .

Details:

Cordis Auckland’s Winter Indulgence package costs $199 for 90 minutes, including use of bathing facilities.

A King Premier room in the Pinnacle Tower starts from $319 per night. An executive suite starts from $1,259 per night. Executive rooms and suites include club lounge access. See: cordishotels.com/en/auckland

Stay safe: New Zealand is currently under Covid-19 restrictions. Follow the instructions on covid19.govt.nz.

The writer was hosted by Cordis Auckland.

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