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The Wellness Holiday Boutique reviews Shanti Som Wellbeing Retreat



Shanti Som Wellbeing Retreat is a boutique wellness retreat tucked away in Andalucia’s serene Sierra de las Nieves National Park. Nestled in the mountains, this peaceful adults-only wellness sanctuary offers a haven of tranquillity for those looking to escape their hectic schedules and the stresses of daily life, which was exactly what led me to booking myself in for a 3-day Pilates Retreat at Shanti Som. After a hectic start to the year, I wanted to give my mind and body some quiet and space to prioritise my mental and physical wellbeing and reconnect with myself.


The Hotel

 

As I approach Shanti Som down the long forest pathway, a giant Buddha lies at the entrance to invite guests into a calming space for relaxation and rejuvenation. As I enter the retreat, I instantly feel like I’ve been transported to South-East Asia surrounded by thatched roofs, dark wooden beams and Buddha statues dotted around. As I check in and enjoy a healthy welcome drink, Alicia, the hotel manager, explains to me that the hotel was inspired by Balinese architecture and Feng Shui design. This is illustrated further by the winding paths and tropical zen gardens I discover as I explore around the retreat to the sounds of the birds chirping in the nature and my mind feeling calmer already; there's no hesitation in saying that Shanti Som really is a sanctuary of peace with plenty of hidden areas for relaxation by the pool, heated for the cooler months, and healing gardens as well as plenty of cosy lounge areas and fireplace for the evenings.

 

One thing that really stands out at Shanti Som is the kindness of all the staff; many of the staff members have been there for years and always made an effort to introduce themselves, which i found comforting as a single traveller at the retreat. I noticed that many of the guests were returning visitors and one of the guests I met in a yoga class was an 80-year-old man who had been visiting twice a year for the past decade and explains that each visit to Shanti Som is like being welcomed back into a family home.



The Rooms at Shanti Som Wellbeing Retreat

 

The moment I stepped into my standard mountain view room at Shanti Som, a sense of serenity washed over me which was partially influenced by the soothing scent of a jasmine and tuberose diffuser wafting through the room - I couldn’t resist buying one from the boutique to take home. The tasteful decor, infused with soft neutral tones and natural materials, created a calming atmosphere and my private terrace had a day bed where I was able to enjoy the spectacular mountain views. The room itself was minimalist in design and a haven of comfort, with the most comfortable bed that promised a restful night's sleep, blackout curtains and luxurious Ritual toiletries. A spa robe and slippers are also provided in the room which you can wear during the day with a note encouraging you to walk bare foot around the retreat to ground yourself and connect with nature. There are only 15 rooms at Shanti Som with garden or mountain views – I’d recommend upgrading to a mountain view to enjoy the stunning views of Sierra de Las Nieves mountains.



Dining at Shanti Som Wellbeing Retreat

 

The menu at Shanti Som offers a delectable selection of healthy dishes, all prepared with fresh, local ingredients. Breakfast is a healthy and simple affair with a continental breakfast made up of home-made jams, bread, fresh fruit and salad and home-made granola. Lunch and dinner offer a starter, main and dessert with delicious and nutritious flavours inspired by Asian and Mediterranean fusion with dishes with my top 3 being the Tom Kha Soup, Beetroot Carpaccio and Thai Curry. I can honestly say that each meal was a symphony of flavours, nourishing my body while tantalising my taste buds. The drinks menu offers a range of healthy juices, smoothies and wine and beer. Another highlight in the restaurant is the shared dining table, inviting solo wellness travellers to have meals together if they want to.



The Wellness Offerings at Shanti Som Wellbeing Retreat

 

Shanti Som offers a range of holistic wellness retreats from yoga to healing to detox to Pilates to weight loss - what’s great about the wellness offerings here is that you can join on any date and with flexibility on duration. Most retreats are a minimum of 3 nights but after my short stay, I’d recommend staying at least 5 nights if time allows as it took me a couple of days to truly allow my mind to relax and fully appreciate the calm and stillness of the surroundings.

 

My mat Pilates classes took place with the enthusiastic Javier who was great at adapting the class to each person’s level. I also did a private reformer Pilates which was super fun and challenging to a soundtrack of Madonna and Javier singing words of encouragement as he pushed me through my paces and out of my comfort zone.

 

My retreat programme also included a daily yoga, meditation which would take place in the outdoor yoga shala, weather permitting, or the indoor studio. My Hatha flow yoga class was taught by Nathalie, who has been with Shanti Som for the last 12 years, and started off with the class setting our intentions before we continued onto our asanas (yoga postures) to bring peace to the mimd and body. She also led a yoga Nidra and sound healing class which complemented my relaxing experience perfectly by allowing me to release the tensions from my mind and body.

 

I also had a deep tissue massage from Beatrice who was so skilled in working out the tension and stress I was holding in my shoulders. The spa menu also includes a variety of holistic treatments including rejuvenating facials to relaxing massages to body scrubs to energy healing sessions. As there are only 4 treatment rooms at the retreat, I’d recommend prebooking treatments in advance to guarantee availability if you’re only there for a short stay. There’s also a steam room and sauna in the spa to unwind as well before your treatments.



Who's Shanti Som Wellbeing Retreat for

 

Shanti Som Wellbeing Retreat promises a path to rejuvenation and it truly delivered. This haven of wellness offers a holistic approach to wellbeing, and was an idyllic escape leaving me feeling refreshed, invigorated, and ready to tackle the world again. I met some lovely guests and a mix of solo travellers wanting some time to recharge, friends catching up away from their hectic lifestyles and couples rebalancing and reconnecting. Whether you seek stress reduction, weight management, or simply a boost in overall well-being, Shanti Som has something for everyone.


If you're interested in booking your next wellbeing escape to Shanti Som Wellbeing Retreat, enquire here or call to speak to one of our wellness specialists on +44(0) 203 886 0082.

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