A wellness retreat in an area where residents live to 100

Across this 180-acre property, residents of Costa Rica’s Talamanca Mountain foothills live in a Blue Zone, one of the world’s designated areas in which, due to a variety of style elements of life, people are living longer and healthier lives. . Hacienda AltaGracia, Auberge Resorts Collection, which opened last week, cannot guarantee this to its guests, but as a deliberately constructed holistic wellness resort that borrows some inspiration from its neighbors, it can at least promise that clients will leave with the means to lead healthier lives.

“The Hacienda AltaGracia is a place where guests can move fast or slow, explore the destination and their inner selves, and connect with our community while reconnecting with loved ones,” said Mark Wright, general manager of the resort. “Wellness means something different to everyone – for some it’s a fascinating adventure, and for others it’s meditation – or a combination of the two. At AltaGracia, customers will find balance and purpose, ultimately transforming mind, body and soul.

The disciplines with which to achieve this were designed by New York-based wellness provider THE WELL, blending Eastern and Western philosophies with elements from this region. At the central Casa de Agua hydrotherapy facility, treatments using local sludge and oils are activated using heat, water and steam. Other treatments include Hierbas y Flores, a deep massage using freshly picked herbs and flowers, Maderoterapia, a holistic massage technique using wooden tools to balance energy, reduce stress and improve the flow of the lymphatic system , an herbal river bath on the banks of the Calientillo River, and Integrative Energy Healing with a 700 Pound Crystal.

Other healing techniques go deeper into nature: hiking with a guide to identify wildlife in the surrounding rainforest, including night hikes to spot armadillos, brightly colored frogs, and ocelots; these explorations may also include stargazing, followed by a corresponding astrological chart reading. Using Hacienda AltaGracia’s private airstrip, guests can also explore further afield: south to the Osa Peninsula and Isla del Cano National Park for snorkeling, diving, fishing and jumping at the beach; spend a day with the Boruca tribe in their native reserve; or visit Tortuguero National Park, where they can paddle in traditional canoes upstream to a remote village under the watchful eye of white-faced capuchin monkeys. Other adventure possibilities include surf trips to Uvita and exploring Guayabo, an ancient lost city, followed by a whitewater rafting experience on the sacred Pacuare River. But guests can enjoy the benefits of nature just by looking at the property and the stunning views of the San Isidro Valley and its cloud cover.

Since what you eat is such an important part in determining health and is an essential part of the longevity experienced in this region, the culinary program of the five restaurants at the resort is grounded in sustainability and local ingredients while at the same time appealing to various tastes. Options range from rustic Latin American dishes with components grown in the country in the main restaurant Grano, to meat and seafood cooked over a fire made with dried coconuts in the barbecue restaurant Cienfuegos. Familiar snacks and coffee from the resort’s coffee farm are also available throughout the day. And for those who wish to get involved, experiences such as fighting livestock, roasting coffee, or blending sugar cane distilled liquors with a mixologist can be arranged.

Matching the general tone of nature-based serenity, the 50 one- and two-bedroom casitas, some with plunge pools, are rustic, made up of weathered wood with fireplaces and vine-covered pergolas. Interiors, however, are not straightforward: Designed by New York designer Nina Gotlieb, they blend materials such as leather, linen, marble, and rattan in a refined style that could easily find its place in an apartment. New Yorker. But on the terrace, with a view of the coffee farm, the rainforest and the clouds floating above the green valley, it is obvious that you are very far away.

About Matthew Berkey

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