9:30 AM: In cognito, I presented myself at the reception area to be greeted by one of three smiling and cheerful attendants. First, I was taken aback by the grandeur of the open air concept and the lavish marble scenery were to say the least, simply awe-inspiring. It took no less than three minutes to be served and provided with a “digital bracelet” which entitled me with a pass key to what would prove to be unbridled freedom. This magical bracelet enabled me to choose any locker, among hundreds, permitting me to store my personal belongings with the utmost safety and security. Furthermore, the bracelet also permitted me to take full advantage of any and all of the Spa’s complimentary service offerings without the need of my wallet or credit card.
In other words, if anyone so desires to indulge themselves into being treated to enjoy a well-deserved massage, manicure, pedicure, beauty or rejuvenation therapy and/or treatment, everything is digitally recorded with the bracelet. Oh! Did I mention, it also provides guests with the privilege of savouring the tantalizing and health-wise delicacies offered at the Spa’s incredible bistro.
Finally, upon entry to the spa’s second floor locker room entrance, I was presented with a complimentary plush, 100% cotton bathrobe and towel, dispelling the need for any additional charges. Very classy!
9:45 AM: I am a seasoned connoisseur of how to fully profit from all the health and wellness benefits and rewards associated with a carefully structured spa experience. This expertise was developed and cultivated after co-founding and governing the Polar Bear Spa in the early 90’s; one of the original arctic spas offering Thermal Therapy activities in all of North America.
Therefore, from experience, I was ecstatic to discover the presence of a freezer, filled with snow and ice, reportedly to be the only one in Canada, available free of charge. It is conveniently located next to the main sauna on the second floor.
Oh, by the way, that's Frosty in the header image, the Spa mascot.
Strictly from a personal health enhancement perspective, entering the snow-ice room, which is kept at a chilly -20 degrees, obliges your body to go into overdrive, forcing your internal thermostat to increase blood circulation in order to re-establish your physique’s core temperature. This is an extremely good thing - regardless of the temporary physical discomfort. This mild discomfort constitutes a physical phenomenon, which in fact, significantly boosts your brain power by significantly boosting oxygen-rich blood flow.
Immediately following 10 minutes of these combined physical and mental challenges, effortless challenges I may add, I immediately entered the “huge” sauna. Once again, I was mesmerized and immediately fell into a hypnotic trance.
The vast majority of both home and conventional commercial saunas do not produce the required temperatures in order to stimulate optimal health benefits. In most cases, they provide limited, short-term and superficial comfort. Therefore, imagine my delight when I discovered that there was not one, not two, but four heating stations inside the sauna, enabling the temperature to soar and generate an ambient interior temperature over 160 degrees. I love pleasant surprises. More so when I know for a fact that they force my physique to secrete toxins and impurities out of all my organs, contributing immensely to better health.
If that wasn’t enough to excite the hardiest of Thermal Therapy enthusiasts, the outer linings of the heating stations are ingeniously designed with built-in water dispersal features which transforms the customary intense “dry” heat, a major flaw with most all saunas, and instead infuses the "Finnish" style sauna with a curative moisture-rich oxygen mixture, which directly serves to bolster the excretion and the elimination of toxins from lungs and accompanying vital organs. From the perspective of an effortless and unbiased health and well-being feature, it simply does not get better than that.
After a long and grueling 15 minutes, heatedly disposing most all of the environmentally infused poisons and toxins out of my system, I take but only a few steps and escape the intense heat and plunge into the curative sensations of the crashing flow of an ice cold waterfall, intentionally immersing my body and mind into a state of suspended animation. Nirvana!
Extreme caution concerning the length of time you should spend in the sauna (thermal- therapy) before you indulge in the sensations of the waterfalls (hydro or aqua-therapy). Finally, beginners should force themselves to resist the temptations of exiting the sauna in under a minimum 10 minute time-span. This is an important feature in order to maximize the health-related benefits of the Thermo-Therapy treatment.