My week in Chiva Som Health Resort – Heaven of life…..
I have been a passionate fan of health resorts for some time.
Life has been hectic for me over the past few years so when the opportunity arose to take a break for a week my first thought was which health resort can I visit?
As a member of the travel industry for many years I have been able to visit and sample quite a few health resorts across Australia and Asia. My favourite, though, remains Chiva Som Health Resort in Thailand.
This is the place where I totally rest, recharge and get inspired. Their philosophy of “Above all enjoy your life’ is very close to my heart.
So I thought that it would be worthwhile to share some of my insights with you.
So this is a short and hopefully helpful guide.
Location and Resort
Chiva-Som is the “Heaven of Life” located in Hua Hin approximately 3 hrs drive from Bangkok.
Their philosophy is about learning to live, enjoy and appreciate every moment, and in doing so, create a personal path to health and wellness.
If it’s your first time in Thailand it’s a great idea to combine a stay in Bangkok with, possibly northern parts of the country and then finally 5-7 nights in Chiva-Som. The resort will organise a transfer from either airport or any hotel in Bangkok.
There are 57 rooms including Ocean View rooms – which have been recently refurbished, Thai Pavilions and Suites.
I stayed in both Ocean View – the smallest of all rooms and ideal for 1 person and Thai Pavilion which has a private desk and a great space to relax and meditate.
I absolutely loved the nightly ritual of lighting up the oils in your room as well as the supply of fresh tropical fruit and of course the famous warm water with lime to kick start your day. Every night, staff will print out your daily activities schedule so you don’t need to worry about forgetting anything.
Wellnessat Chiva Som health resort
What I thought was absolutely incredible is the comprehensive range of health and wellness treatments on offer. There are around 70 treatment rooms and an unmatched variety of treatments that I have not seen anywhere else. You can find eastern holistic therapies like Reiki, and my favourite Chi Nei Tsang – Thailand’s unique abdominal massage; body treatments and a choice of different kinds of massages and facials; acupuncture and life blood analysis to name just a few.
The highlight for me was meeting a local Thai lady for a Thai massage. Warning – it’s not a Thai massage you find on the streets of Phuket or Pattaya. This was performed by an amazing 3 generation Thai doctor and her insights were just phenomenal.
I have never seen a resort with such a sophisticated physiotherapy department.
The knowledge and experience of the staff simply blew me away. I met quite a few people in the resort that come every year specifically for physical rehabilitation purposes.
As in any health resort you can do a lot or very little. You can take the opportunity to enjoy a number of group classes most of which are are complementary items included in the package. Boot camps and beach runs at 07.00 are not my cup of tea. I would normally rock up to yoga or stretch before breakfast and then of course Aqua or Pilates.
Your typical day will include morning stretch or yoga, breakfast, massage, water exercise, lunch, nap time of course, swim in the pool or Pilates and dinner.
The facilities are second to none including kinesis studio, gym, watsu pool, flotation pool, large outdoor swimming pool, bathing pavilion, sauna, steam, jacuzzi, and indoor swimming pool. You can even have private tennis or swimming lessons.
The new addition – Spa
The new addition Niranlada Medi-Spa means ‘eternal beauty’. The doctors are US trained dermatologists and plastic surgeons certified by the American Board of Laser Surgery. Again make sure you get the brochure if cosmetic treatment is the purpose of your trip and make sure you book well in advance.
Chiva Som health resort regularly hosts practitioners of exceptional ability, on a monthly rotation basis. Have a look on their web site to see what’s coming up if you are interested in seeing a particular practitioner.
I had a pleasure in meeting DANCHAI CHERNPRATEEP who had 25 years experience as a meditation practitioner and more than 10 years experience in healing & energy work. While being sceptical at first, I actually learned some interesting tips from him and I do now put those techniques in to practice in my every day life.
Food philosophy at Chiva Som health resort
The package includes 3 meals a day. You can now choose from 2 options for lunch and dinner- International and amazingly tasty cuisine in The Emerald room or Thai cuisine in the Taste of Siam – overlooking the pool. The Thai food was so amazingly delicious and I was lucky enough to have a cooking class (can be booked in the resort).
Check out some recipes I uploaded.
Another highlight for me was the BBQ by the pool celebrating Queens’s birthday.
The food is so amazing that they now offer cooking courses in the China Som Academy in Bangkok. You can also purchase the cook books.
Another amazing thing about the resort for me was the fact that you can travel solo, with a friend or partner. At meal times you can sit alone and reflect on the day or gather at the shared table.
I met some interesting people in the resort and was totally amazed to find that despite the price tag, the resort was not full of the ‘rich & famous’ but people who wanted to improve their health and wellbeing instead.
The tri-part logo represents the mind, body and spirit, the balance of which is the key to personal fulfilment. The older I get the more well balanced life becomes important to me.
My tips for visiting Chiva Som health resort:
Request Health & Wellness – your personal guide booklet before you travel. It’s a comprehensive 90 page guide to ALL the treatments they offer.
Trust me, to make the most of your stay you need to familiarise yourself with all options and some you might need to book ahead especially if you are travelling during the high season.
Plan your days ahead. When you arrive you will have the wellness consultation and can choose a suitable program for you. These programs range across weight management and detox through to spa pampering, mediation or wellbeing.
You can be flexible and change and upgrade your activities. This is where the book will come in handy.
Personally I prefer the low season – June – September. There are less people, more personal service and of course more choice of treatments at the times you want.
Your stay includes a daily massage. Try to book a massage around 16.00 so that you can have a rest after and before dinner.
Massages are done by trained therapists, however if you prefer strong and therapeutic massage you can upgrade for an extra fee to a massage-physiotherapist. Staff are trained by the Chiva Som Academy in Bangkok.
Take a walk on the beach either every morning or every evening before dinner.
I love the fact that you learn the secrets of a healthy lifestyle including diet and wellbeing that can be applied at home.
I love Chiva Som health resort so much that I had asked them to provide us with some special packages for my readers and clients. So if you feel like giving it a go – please email me for some more tips and special rates.
Try the recipes I have uploaded especially in the winter months☺
Keep warm and till next time