Category Archives: Alps

The most extraordinary Infinity pool in Dolomites

The most extraordinary, heated outdoors infinity pool in Dolomites belongs to Alpin Panorama Hotel Hubertus in Olang/Valdaora valley, South Tyrol. Hotel Hubertus is a destination of your dreams, it’s not for passing by and stopping over.

I love to roam the world spending every night in a different place. Coming across the offer of five days minimum stay in one place made me pause and think twice. What will I do in such a remote place for five days? Will I be bored to death?

I committed to the booking after a couple of weeks of hesitation and constantly coming back to the pictures of the Sky pool. The beauty of the scenery was haunting me in my sleep. The images of the infinity pool were the deciding point and I must say the reality was breathtaking.

the most extraordinary Infinity pool in Dolomites
 floating between heaven and earth…

The most extraordinary Infinity pool in Dolomites

With its width of 5 meters, length of 25 m and the depth of 1,30 m the Skypool can be seen as completely unique in the water world. Thanks to the glass front, the glazed window on the ground and its height of 12 meters, the swimmer gets the impression to float weightless in the fairytale surroundings. The spectacular Skypool resembles a mountain lake in the middle of the unique mountain scenery of the DOLOMITES. World Heritage Site.

So happy to be wrong

Well, I thought, at the very least I might have some extra time on my hands to publish my book, if there is nothing else to do at Hotel Hubertus destination.

I was so wrong!

I was busy running from one activity to another, sometimes with a difficult choice to make between different hikes or saunas, or swimming or SPA treatments, or  evening stretching classes.

I must confess that even with extending my stay to nine !!! days, I did not manage it all.

One day at a time

Here is a snapshot of just one day to give you a taste of my experience:

In the morning I woke up with the gorgeous view of the mountains and the Sky pool! Each room has a balcony with a view of the mountains.

I then had a choice of Aqua fitness in the inside pool or a leisure swim in the Sky pool before a generous breakfast to kick start the day.

The rest of the morning was dedicated to different hikes that started with a shuttle bus drive from the hotel. The competent guides were available to discuss the difficulty of the hikes and to help decide which is right for you. For a long hike, it was recommended that you take a packed lunch with you. In the bedrooms you had a very comfy backpack waiting for you with a water bottle. The shops in the nearby village had any other hiking gear/clothing supplies that you might need so you can come unprepared.

There is also a well-equipped gym onsite in case it rains heavily, or you are aching from the hike before.

There is a buffet lunch: soup, salads and cakes are served from 12 till 5. You can manage the time regardless of which activities you pick for the day. The cake buffet is amazing: filled with several home-baked cakes that leaves your mouth watering.

Wellness

In the afternoon there were stretching classes in the gym and sauna infusion rituals in the panoramic sauna. At the end of the day you can take a dip in the salt water pool or take selfies in the Sky pool. Apart from the six pools (if you can call a bubble bath a pool) there are seven saunas and four inside areas for relaxing. Of course, you have all at your disposal when the weather is nice.

It’s possible to relax in the sauna world with steam bath, herbal sauna, infrared sauna, Dolomite steam bath in grotto, alpine sauna, the barrel textile sauna and Blockhouse sauna with panoramic view to the mountains.

In the Alpenreych Spa take some time to relax and immerse yourself in a world of relaxing Alpine, Ayurvedic and traditional wellbeing treatments.

The evening highlight

The evening highlight was a dinner: salad buffet, four dishes of a la carte cuisine, cheese selection and dessert. Each evening had a theme with live music very often.

The Wine Cellar is a very special kind of delightful experience: renowned wine labels of regional, national and international classics, cult wines and rarities waiting to be discovered by you as wine lovers and connoisseurs during your holiday in South Tyrol.

The staff were incredibly friendly and competent, the true hospitality of South Tyrol.

The fine weather guarantee

You can find a good weather guarantee on the hotel website. I was kind of hoping for rain but experienced crystal clear days – perfect for taking pictures. I visited Hotel Hubertus in mid October, the last week before they close and prepare for winter season.

At our place, rain never spoils the holiday schedule. Indeed, if during a stay of at least 7 nights at the hotel it should rain for 8 hours in succession between 08:00 and 18:00 (excluding August), every rainy day will be refunded.

There are two low price periods at Hotel Hubertus, October and May. The other times are high season with different price ranges.

the most extraordinary Infinity pool in Dolomites
Anafi 1.6.0
the most extraordinary Infinity pool in Dolomites
Anafi 1.6.0

Amazing hikes

The hikes I took illustrated with amazing pictures are described in the blog post, click on the pictures for more. The 3 hotel guides accompany you to 15 hikes a week, the different difficulty levels suitable from beginners to experienced hikers.

Hikes in Dolomites
Hikes in Dolomites

The life after

I finally managed to finish my book a couple weeks after returning from Hotel Hubertus. The book is on Amazon now. It’s all about work-life balance and the art of living. Perhaps I need to write another book about the pleasures of life with the Sky pool on the book cover.

The best thermal SPA in Switzerland, Italy and Austria Alps

The trip San Pellegrino – Aqua Dome starts from Bergamo airport with the duration of 600 km lasting 8 hours 45min without stops. However life is for living, hence the 4 stops to experience the beauty of nature and indulge in the best thermal SPA retreats in the Switzerland, Italy and Austria Alps.

Stop 1: San Pellegrino thermal water

30 km and 40 min from Bergamo airport and you are in San Pellegrino to enjoy a thermal bath in the world’s most famous water.

An avenue of fragrant lime trees, the ancient mescite room and a designer facade are just some of the highlights of a building that is a true monument to water. TheThe wellness pathway is structured throughout two separate buildings with over thirty spa practices including panoramic tubs, sensorial tubs, waterfalls, Kneipp therapy, Vichy showers, saunas, steam baths and a solarium garden. “Vita” spring gives us thermal waters rich in bicarbonate sulphate, calcium, and magnesium flowing pure and uncontaminated through layers of rock, from which the water erodes precious mineral salts.

Thermal SPA in the Alps
Restored frescoes, colonnades and early twentieth century ceilings merge with modern architecture.

Stop 2: Overnight in Locarno & Thermal SPA Salini in the Switzerland 

Locarno is 141km and 2hr 25 min drive away from San Pellegrino 

Locarno is an Italian-speaking resort city in southern Switzerland, on Lake Maggiore at the base of the Alps. It’s known for its sunny climate. Founded in the 12th century, the old town’s Castello Visconteo houses the Museo Civico, which showcases Roman antiquities. 

Locarno’s historical funicular is your most confortable and romantic option to visit the Sacro Monte Madonna del Sasso and the starting point for mesmerizing excursions into the hilly mountains of Locarno.

Salini & Thermal Spa Locarno Switzerland

An oasis of peace and rest that offers all the rituals for true relaxation. The Termali Salini & Spa wellness centre is one of the best thermal SPA in Switzerland Alps. Adjacent to the Lido of Locarno, the Thermal SPA boasts a remarkably wide offering of saunas and thermal spring water swimming pools.

The building which is home to the “Termali Salini & Spa” centre, designed in the studio of Moro&Moro, is of great architectural quality and its transparency mirrors the beautiful surrounding landscape. It’s the place where architecture and beautiful landscape compliments each other.

Stop 3: Hotel 7132: the masterpiece inspiring senses

After driving 154 km, 2 hr 25 min you arrive at the tiny village Vals in the Swiss Alps. And you don’t come here to ski. You’ll find a wonderland for design buffs. 

The impressive architecture! The ancient beauty of the mountains all around! It all comes together for a total relaxation to switch off from the daily hustle. This design masterpiece is build around thermal spring water offering pools and saunas to treat your soul and body. It is certainly the best designed thermal SPA in the Switzerland Alps.

Thermal SPA in Switzerland
The Grisons architect Peter Zumthor didn’t just build the thermal baths – he created a masterpiece out of 60,000 quartzite slabs. A homage to Vals and the archaic natural setting of the 7132 Hotel. An architectural milestone that was classified as a listed building shortly after completion. Having won national and international awards, the thermal baths attract those in search of relaxation as well as architecture enthusiasts from all over the world.

The prices in Hotel 7132 starts from €600 per night. However, there is another architectural pearl – the house of Architects. The four top architects – Thom Mayne (Morphosis), Tadao AndoKengo Kuma and Peter Zumthor – have been tapped to contribute the designs. The House of Architects features a lobby and entrance designed by Morphosis Architects. And 7 different room designs are centered around a single material. The price in the house of Architects starts from €360 with access to SPA (€76) inclusive.

Stop 4: Aqua Dome the thermal SPA water jewel of the Austria Alps

In 3 hours, 239km and lunch in Liechtenstein, you can reach the final destination of the journey Aqua Dome.

As far back as the 16th century, the area was known for its healing springs. Today, the Aqua Dome uses the rediscovered healing thermal spring water for your healthy relaxation. Aqua Dome might compete for the title of the largest thermal SPA in the Alps.

According to chemical analyses, the water that flows from deep inside the earth is a sulfur spring with a divalent sulfur content of 5 mg S–/l. It is legally recognized mineral spring. With the speed of 3 to 4 liters per second, the water bubbles up to the surface. Wonderfully warm and pure, right into our thermal baths. Feel the strength of the springs!

The Aqua Dome 4* hotel offers accommodation from €288 with breakfast and dinner on Sunday nights. The thermal spa & sauna are open until midnight on every Friday ! Enjoy the moonlight buffet and prosecco in the thermal bath restaurant Einkehr from €9.80 pp.

12 pools and 7 saunas will fill your day with tranquility. There are also wide variety of SPA and beauty treatments available.

Thermal SPA in the Alps
The perfect end of the trip: DELUXE SPA EVENING
Treat yourself with the entire offer of the AQUA DOME on the exquisite deluxe spa evening. The exclusive atmosphere in the thermal spa area and sauna area as well invites to relax and regenerate.
The grand journey across the Alps: 600 km Italy, Swiss, Liechtenstein and Austria.