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Canadian spirit to shine at upcoming Nordic spa

10 Jan 2018
The newly renovated Kananaskis Delta Lodge in Alberta, Canada, will soon be home to a Nordic spa with a Canadian spin.

Set to open in February and spanning 50,000sq ft (4,645sq m), the Kananaskis Nordic Spa will be set deep in Alberta’s Kananaskis County, surrounded by forest and mountains, and is designed as a Canadian perspective on the wellbeing lifestyle of Scandinavia.

The spa will feature a relaxation lodge, five outdoor pools, six sauna and steam cabins, an exfoliation room, saltwater float pool, outdoor heated hammocks, a meditation labyrinth, heated lounge chairs with music stations, a dream lounge, 30-person yoga studio with silk yoga hammocks, eight treatment rooms, and the Prospector Bistro.

“We wanted the spa to feel Canadian from its core,” said Jennifer Buckler, vice president of spa and development.

“We’ve taken the philosophy and practices of Nordic wellness and created an original design out of it.

"This is a space that reflects not only our location, but the Canadian way of life; it’s a different take on the increasingly popular Nordic Spa style of repair, relaxation and rejuvenation.

"The Canadian attitude, combined with our extensive knowledge of the health and wellness industries, has shaped the Kananaskis Nordic Spa experience – right down to the little details.”

One example of the Canadian influence is the inclusion of social campfire settings within the outdoor woodland design.

“We’re Canadian; we’re warm, friendly, welcoming types, and we want the spa to embody that spirit,” said Buckler.

“It’ll still be expected that the ambience will be quiet and respectful, and we’ll ask our guests to speak in hushed tones, but it’ll be a place to unwind and recharge together – all in a spectacular outdoor setting.”

A modern-rustic, three-storey, Spa Lodge will stand within the outdoor spa area, surrounded by a series of hot, saltwater and cold plunge pools.

There will be three different sauna types: a barrel sauna, banya sauna and Finnish sauna, as well as a eucalyptus and alchemist steam cabin infused with aromatherapy oils.

The exfoliation cabin is a space inspired by the traditional Turkish hammam and will have a selection of salts for self-exfoliation.

Inside the Spa Lodge, a minimalist menu of deep tissue, relaxation and hot stone massage will be available in the treatment rooms. Guests can unwind in the relaxation lounge afterwards, styled to be reminiscent of a contemporary Canadian cabin.

The Prospector Bistro is a communal area to enjoy healthy food and drink.

“We’ve used textures, luxe fabrics and soft seating to add a home-away-from-home feel to the spa space,” said Buckler.

“This was our philosophy from the start: let’s update the spa experience so that our guests can retreat to the lodge and continue their relaxation practice within a setting you can just sink into and stay a while, put your feet up, read a book, take in the view, enjoy a glass of wine, or share some ‘reset time’ with a friend.”

Outdoors, the spa will have designated spaces for hydrotherapy cycles, peaceful rejuvenation and meditation, and socialisation.

The ‘Reflect’ area will be for calm reflection and independent relaxation, while the ‘Connect’ area is designed for communal time and conversations, including The Gathering Pool and fireside area.

“The Nordic way is to move from hot to cold, to stimulate the body and senses; it’s all about the contrast, and each provides a reward from the other,” said Buckler.

“The indoor/outdoor design of the spa is part of this cycle. We’re in the heart of Alberta, and throughout the winter months our spa guests will be braving the elements and facing cold temperatures and snow on the ground – which will only enhance the experience. Plus, what’s more Canadian than taking on the outdoors head-on?”

Additional Canadian touches include a tartan robe featuring a 1964 maple leaf print by David Weiser, which was designed to commemorate the new Canadian flag.

“Our robe choice is quite the statement,” said Buckler. “They’ll be a beautiful red tartan design, which is certainly a move away from traditional spa attire, but it’s about reflecting our Canadian roots.”

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