If you're on vacation, make sure to plan relaxation into your itinerary!
We often times forget to take time out from our daily routines, to take some downtime and just relax or to even pamper ourselves a bit. So we plan vacations for that purpose, right? If you're in the midst of planning your vacation to Italy, you've probably already seen there is so a lot to see and do! Given the many cultural and historical offerings you'll find, remember that the whole package of coming to Italy includes taking the time to enjoy the views, the delicious food and wines and to not forget to pamper yourself while you also visit museums and see the sights.
We hope you return home with great memories of your time in Tuscany as well as feeling well-rested. To better incorporate some pampering and relaxation while you're in Tuscany, I highly recommend you include a visit to Asmana Wellness World! Located just outside Florence, I recently visited with my partner-husband Stefano who, to be fully honest, generally balks at spending time doing this “sort of thing”. The enthusiasm and contented state he was in after our afternoon there is a testament to the beneficial effect Asmana has on everyone who visits, even those who normally don't go to a spa.
Water whirlpools, waterfalls, saunas, massages... pure relaxation!
A day of relaxation
Take advantage of our partnership with Asmana that allows you to have 10% OFF your day at Asmana! Just download and print the coupon below.
As soon as you walk in, you'll be surrounded by a a tropical setting of palm trees and other green vegetation, which along with the sound of water, gently but immediately starts soothing your soul. Consider yourself transported away from the world and fully surrounded and supported by a place where their main goal is to bring peace to all of your senses. A place where you can find many ways to care for your body and dedicate 100% of your time to just yourself. This is what we, and you, will first experience when you step out of the locker area at Asmana and into their wellness world.
The spa/wellness center brings together East and West, with a splendid setting and multisensory experiences based around water, warmth, quiet and tranquility. Think hammam and saunas, but also water works such as a chromatic waterfall (called the Cave), outdoor pools including separate salt pools and quite unique relaxation rooms, each with a different “theme”. These include a room with nature sounds and swings that make it seem like you are in the trees like a bird. While the room in Italian is called the Room of Nests, in English, a cocoon would me more appropriate. Another room has water beds, while another has Himalayan salt lining its walls. This area has many elements inspired and brought over from southeast Asia, fusing Italian modernity with oriental designs.
We started our visit at Asmana with a warm foot bath, before heading into the heated indoor water pool and enjoying the water jets massaging our muscles. You quickly relax how tense they are and start little by little relaxing, even though you will find yourself as curious as we are in exploring all that Asmana has to offer.
This includes special ceremonies in the sauna and hammam called “Aufguss” and while they are well-known in Germany and northern Europe, Asmana is the first to bring them to Italy. You won't find them at any other spa or wellness center in Italy. Make note of the times at which they are offered and do try to make it to one in the sauna and one in the hammam, as we did, to experience both in a special way. In these ceremonies, music, steam, essential oils and the specially trained staff who shift the air around will ensure you enjoy a memorable sauna experience. In the hammam, the ceremony includes salt given out to use as scrub as you enjoy your purifying steam bath.
Our day at Asmana was both fun and very relaxing. First, we passed from the indoor pool into the outdoor and enjoyed exploring the salt pool as well as the small jet river around a small island at the far end of the outdoor pool. This was a lot of fun! The jets are quite strong and literally can carry you off, round and round. I let myself be carried in the current, delighting in the pull of the water and feeling completely safe, something that if you don't know a river and its course you might not likely let yourself do. This area is surrounded by beautiful gardens, with lounge chairs to catch some sun.
The fun continued as we explored the Cave with its waterfall and chromo-therapy, the three saunas (which go from 60°C to 80°C and from 20-30% humidity) and the various relaxation rooms before heading into the Hammam with its various distinct areas. We also took a break to enjoy a light lunch, which we found to be tasty and perfect menu to complement our day dedicated to body and soul. Make sure to take breaks and restore hydration throughout the day, particularly after the saunas.
Two very important notes to make about how Asmana ensures you get the chance to fully relax: no children under 18 and no cellphones are allowed within. While the first is for safety reasons, I believe it is the perfect excuse for parents to leave the kids behind and take time out just for themselves. Not that you want to leave the family out of this special experience, but this experience itself requires no distractions (there is a water park nearby that you can enjoy with the little ones called Hidron on a separate day). Asmana is perfect for couples and to go with a small group of friends. You will be recharging and regenerating, going home at the end of your visit perfectly relaxed... and looking forward to repeating the experience!
SPECIAL EVENTS EVERY DAY OF THE WEEK
I already mentioned the Aufguss ceremonies that are carried out in the herbal and wine saunas and hammam every single day at various times throughout the day, but there is something special going on pretty much every day of the week. For example, on Tuesdays you can take advantage of a special Hammam ritual done for small groups of up to 4 people. You just book as you come in that day, the rituals take place all day from 11am to 9pm, take 50 minutes and serve to offer an authentic Hammam experience. You start with tea, continue with body scrubs, steam baths and end with a soap massage. This experience is extra, just as any body massages or face treatments you would like to enjoy within the center. There are many on offer, you will truly find something you will enjoy. Just book these extra services as soon as you arrive.
Every Wednesday, there are Tibetan singing bowl sessions in the Maharaja Suite, every Thursday a special Aufguss “Sounds of Tibet” in the herbal sauna in the afternoon and every Friday, an "Aperitivo at the Asmana", a happy hour from 7-9pm along the pool bar (outside of the water) to enjoy the evening hours. On Fridays and Saturdays, the center is open until 1am. On Saturdays, you can enjoy live music from 6,45pm to 11pm in the main outdoor pool area (with a short break between 9-9:30pm). You can see special promotions on the official website as well as keep up to date with events on their Facebook page.
HOW IT WORKS
You don't need reservations, just take along a swimsuit, a bathrobe, slippers (flip flops) and 2 large towels (take one to use inside the saunas or on the lounge chairs or beds, leave the other in the locker to use at the end for your shower). For our site visitors, we've managed to obtain a 10% discount on your day at Asmana! Download, print and take it with you to get your discount.
If you don't have any of these with you, you can rent them directly at Asmana at affordable prices. For example, the towels are 4 euro, the robes 8 euro, while the slippers are 4 euro (and you can take them home as a souvenir). If you're also in need of a bathing suit, you can purchase one at the reception but I'm sure you'll have one packed for your trip to Italy. You don't need to worry about a lock for the lockers, as you receive a bracelet when you arrive that is used to close your locker and to pay for extra services, snacks or meals within the center without the need to take cash with you. You'll pay for these at the end of your day when you exit the center.
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?
You have several choices depending on the time you have available. For example,
2 hours – 20 euro
4 hours – 25 euro
full day – 33 euro
On weekends, long weekends, public holidays, in August and during the Christmas holidays, there is an extra 3 euros added on. We went on a weekday and while we found that were a lot of cars outside, once inside we never had the impression that the center was crowded or that there were too many people in any one area.
If you buy only 2 hours and end up staying 4 or 5 hours, each extra half hour is at the rate of 1,50 euro (up to the maximum cost of a full day ticket). If you're not certain of how long you will have, I recommend you really give yourself 4 hours, minimum. Once you're inside, the hours will fly by quickly and once you're relaxing, you shouldn't worry about time! Remember to download our coupon and get 10% off your day, no matter how long you stay.
The center has really convenient opening times to allow for a full day of relaxation. It is open daily from Monday through Thursday from 10am to midnight, staying open an hour longer on Fridays and Saturdays until 1am and on the weekend opening an hour earlier, at 9am. We look forward to going back and enjoying the evening hours there, maybe even on a working day for us, to enjoy the outdoors during the summer. They have live music on Saturdays!
If you're there a full day, take advantage of the pool bar, the bistrot or restaurant where you can have anything from snacks to excellent, delicious light meals in between your hammam or sauna experiences. We enjoyed our lunch and smoothies! You're taking care of your body inside and out by taking advantage of eating well. In the summer, the Fruit Bar by the outside pool offers freshly made juices and smoothies.
Having both indoor and outdoor areas, the center is perfect to be enjoyed year round: fall, winter, spring and summer!
A UNIQUE EXPERIENCE IN ALL OF ITALY
If you realize that all of this is quite unique, you'd be correct: Asmana and the expereince it provides is unique in all of Italy. It is the brainchild of two non-Italians, husband and wife team Florentin Döring and Ariba Tanvir, who dreamt of offering a world of general well-being to everyone and have created the largest wellness center in all of Italy. The "spa" offers the chance to escape for a day from daily life and its stresses, whether you're on vacation or live here. Döring and Tanvir left New York City and came to Tuscany to escape the daily chaos of city life and enjoy a slower way of life. They are now sharing this new lifestyle with everyone, creating a place where everyone can have well-being at their fingertips.
HOW TO REACH ASMANA
Asmana is located outside of Florence, in the Campi Bisenzio town in the outskirts near where the A1 and A11 toll roads cross near the airport. It is in the “middle of nowhere” which means you have gardens surrounding the center, away from any chaos of city traffic. The easiest way to get there is by car, especially if you're staying anywhere in the Tuscan countryside. You can easily drive there on the A1 (exit “Calenzano”, 4 minutes drive from the exit heading in the direction of Campi Bisenzio) or the A11 (exit “Prato Est”, direction Campi Bisenzio – Asmana is 5 minutes away).
If you don't have a car and moving around with public transport, you can take train to Prato or Florence and from there catch a bus. The closest bus stop is “Limite" in Campi Bisenzio. From Florence's SMN, take ATAF bus 30A/30C or CAP bus, line CF; from Prato Centrale, take CAP bus, line CF. From the bus stop, you will need a 10 minute walk along Via di Limite in the direction of Parco Villa Montalvo to reach Asmana.
The easiest way to get there is really by taxi, particularly if you're staying in central Florence. You can skip any walking, especially at the end of your day of relaxation. Don't forget to download our voucher so you can get 10% off your stay at Asmana – and visit Asmana.it for more complete details to plan your day.
To conclude, I want to highlight the most important elements that will positively impact your day of relaxation at Asmana:
- no kids under 18 allowed (safety reasons)
- no cellphones allowed inside
- the power of water, heat and tranquility to help you fully relax and regenerate your body and soul!
We realized we ourselves are surrounded by the beauty of Italy but often get stuck in following our daily routines. Thankfully, we do have to chance to often mix pleasurable endeavors into our work as well – and our recent exploration of Asmana Wellness World has us already planning to head back soon to take time for ourselves. Maybe I'll see you there!
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