So you want to be pampered, huh? Or maybe after days of partying in Vilnius you simply need to get away from the temptations of the city and flush out the accumulated toxins of the easy life. Either way, if you make your way down to Druskininkai, you are sure to find a cure for whatever ails you.
This region of southern Lithuania near the Belarusian border has been giving royals the royal treatment for centuries. The natural springs and mud in this area, known for their curative qualities, have catered to Lithuanian dukes and other nobles who, starting from the 15th and 16th centuries, came to hunt and generally relax in the beautiful wooded scenery of the area. Today, German and other western tourists come for quality treatment at a fraction of the cost of a western European spa treatment. And there are plenty of luxurious and private spots for all to enjoy 's places that will make you feel like a million dollars without having to spend that much. Choose from a hotel with its own spa - a giant hospital like facility - or one of the many small guest houses that offer a limited range of procedures. Another option, and the one I would recommend, would be to stay in a hotel and go to one of the many independent spas.
One of the hotels that is trying to bring the royalty back to Druskininkai is the Europa Royale Hotel. This four star hotel situated in a tranquil park along the Namunas River was opened in April of 2006 after being restored to its 19th century beauty. Â To compliment its scenic historic surroundings, the hotel's 65 rooms are fitted with the latest modern amenities and then some. Prices for a standard single room range from 207 litas (60 euros) in the off-season to 1200 litas for the royal suite. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are served in the hotel's luxurious restaurant where the service is good and the food even better. For those of you who work on the road or are looking for a nice spot for a corporate retreat, this hotel can accommodate up to 400 people in its conference facilities and more halls are to be completed by the end of this year.
But as nice as the rooms and hotel are, people really come here for the town's famous spas. And the "Druskininkai" spa is located only steps from the hotel entrance. If you're there this winter, you'll probably find the two facilities even connected by tunnel. This spa is one of Druskininkai's most famous spots and one of the first health spas to be established in the area. It was founded in 1864, a wooden building where people could come in the summer to enjoy the baths of mineral water which sprang from the wells next to the spa.
The entire facility was renovated in 2002-2003 and today it is one of the most modern in Druskininkai. But despite its modern makeover, the spa still uses its own dedicated wells of natural mineral water with mud brought in from another local source 4 kilometers upstream. Procedures here run the gamut from relaxing gentle honey massages to intense 7 day body cleansing or healthy backbone treatments. Prices vary - package procedures and massages lasting for an hour to two hours cost between 35 's 60 litas.
You can also choose individual treatment depending on your preferences and the prices start from one lita per minute. For those of you who are coming for more specific or serious medical issues, there are treatment regimes that can last up to 28 days and physicians are on hand to devise the right program for you and ensure you receive the proper care and treatments.
The Europa Royale Hotel in Druskininkai is the perfect place to get acquainted with the spa traditions of the Baltic area and to take an autumn break away from the hustle and bustle of the approaching winter months. And the prices won't make you tense up while receiving that long deserved massage.
For more information on the specific procedures that the spa provides as well as their costs, the hotel's website provides information at www.gydykla.lt or you can call +370 313 6 05 08 . To make a reservation at the Europa Royale Hotel or get more information about the hotel and Druskininkai in general, you can call +370 313 42221.