If you’ve ever returned from an action-packed or overindulgent getaway muttering that you need another vacation just to recover from your trip, the rising trend of wellness travel will cure what ails you. The concept is simple: No matter what you do, you should return feeling rejuvenated, reenergized, and refreshed. And while there’s plenty of yoga retreats, spa escapes, and nature getaways to try, why not surround yourself with wellness-oriented activities, features, and services right within your front door? These standout vacation homes from around the world are designed with your well-being in mind.
Ani Villas on Ko Yao Yai Island, Phang Nga, Thailand
Thailand has a massage tradition that’s centuries old, and as wellness-focused tourism has increased, the country has been right at the forefront. Anti-aging and longevity treatments are a particular focus of Thai treatments, and no matter where you go across the Kingdom, you’ll find traditional healing techniques, spa retreats, and a slew of body and skin care. And on the lovely island of Ko Yao Yai, you’ll find Ani Villas—a place that takes wellness and self-care to a whole new level in this wellness-obsessed country. The ten-bedroom beachfront estate has wellness and serenity in its bones: The Zen-like design is inspired by the temples of Northern Thailand. Among the many amenities is a one-hundred-foot oceanfront swimming pool, a therapist-staffed spa and fitness center, and a yoga pavilion. Private and partner yoga is available daily, and of course, indulging in at least one massage a day is a must.
Step outside the estate to experience cave kayaking, mountain biking, and rock climbing around the island, but we also recommend taking a Thai cooking class right in the villa with your personal chef. During your stay, nearly everything is taken care of: daily housekeeping, all-day snacks and cocktail service, spa services, unlimited movie and music streaming, complimentary international calling, even a daily children’s activity program. Which makes it that much easier to just focus on yourself.
Villa Giulia in Positano on the Amalfi Coast, Italy
Simply drinking in the beauty of the town of Positano, from its vertiginous houses tumbling down to the sea to its steep streets and steps, is good for the soul. And Villa Giulia, perched high on Positano’s cliff, is so lovely that it’s practically soul-shaking. The serene Mediterranean décor sets off unobstructed panoramic views of the city and sea to perfection—be prepared to make gazing one of your primary daily activities while staying here.
Move the focus to yourself when you take advantage of the indoor heated pool, sauna, and fitness area. This section of the home is designed as a spacious private spa, with arched ceilings and calming blue tile. It’s a total escape-within-an-escape—and the ideal place to allow any of your worries to simply float away. Once you’re fully blissed out, head out on foot down the hill to Positano Square to explore the restaurants, bars, shops, and more. Both it, and Positano Beach are about a 20-minute downhill walk from your front door.
Mukan in Sian Kaan, Riviera Maya, Mexico
This dreamy destination is nestled along the oceanfront of the Sian Ka’an biosphere reserve, a UNESCO World Heritage site on the eastern coast of Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula. Mukan isn’t far from Tulum and many of the well-trodden sights of the Mayan Riviera, but its setting is complete serene and quite remote—the perfect place to clear your mind. Here, thatched roofs and natural building materials contribute to the off-the-grid vibe, while chic boutique-resort amenities keep you comfortable. The beauty of the beach and the soothing sounds of the ocean provide the perfect backdrop for total relaxation. There’s a swimming pool, a whirlpool, and an on-site private spa complete with wellness specialists able to customize a holistic massage just for you. (And of you don’t indulge in a customized massage, definitely try the popular Mayan Clay massage, one of Mukan’s signature treatments!) Take full advantage of the complimentary yoga classes offered, too. Otherwise, simply kick back, because everything is neatly taken care of. There’s a full staff committed to you and your party, with daily housekeeping, a daily breakfast, a caretaker, an on-site concierge, chef service, even 24 hour security guards.
Coral Pavilion at Grace Bay in Turks and Caicos, Caribbean
The stately great-house-inspired private paradise that is Coral Pavilion is so grand it seems fit for royalty—and you’ll be treated as such during a stay. There’s a full staff of a butler, housekeeper, and private chef, ready to attend to your every wish. And if your wish is to make wellness a major part of your vacation, you’re in luck: Coral Pavilion is so wellness-oriented that you can customize a wellness program in advance of your stay. With its partner Turks and Caicos Wellness, four programs are offered (detox, mindfulness, gut health, and a little bit of everything) that focus on helping guests achieve their optimal health and wellbeing, all facilitated by a doctors and health practitioners from Grace Bay Medical. There’s an initial health consultation followed by personalized massage and treatments, stress reduction techniques, and plant-based meals, with recipes you can take home. Guests have access to the gym, spa, and other resort facilities at nearby Seven Stars, but if you’re part of the wellness program, treatments and activities are brought to you. One villa favorite is a “water massage” that takes place in the villa’s heated pool, where the rippling of the water helps soothe your muscles and clear your mind. (Read more about the experience here.)
Coral Pavilion opens to 120 feet of idyllic beach on renowned Grace Bay, famous for its soft white sand and turquoise waters. And just five minutes away, alongside the same beach, is plenty of oceanfront shopping and dining. But honestly, why leave? Let the world slip away within the villa’s coral stone walls, or daydream for hours while lounging outside, taking advantage of the Sonos sound system to play your favorite relaxing tunes.