It’s mid-January and, yes, our New Year’s resolutions already are crumbling at their edges. The noble impulse to lose a few pounds, get in shape and, alas “Dry January” soon acquire all the savor of tax season and the “mocktail.” Phony Negroni, anyone?
The bitter cocktail of January aside, let’s be sensible about this impulse. Surely, diet and exercise are fundamental to the good life, but so are the cocktail hour and the glass of wine at dinner. Well-being is a state of mind, a goal—not a month in winter. In striving for fitness, health and well-being, it’s vital that we preserve and enhance what we gain.
Thus, this edition examines 2024’s newest trends for well-being and self-care in the luxury home. We include technologies old and new, from cold plunge baths, heated lap pools and hammams all the way to saunas (infrared for 2024!) and the high-altitude simulation of a Himalayan salt wall!
Let the good life be the long good life!
Is there a more bracing way to kick-start a cold January morning than a spirited dip into the icy waters of a cold plunge pool?
At this Texas Hill Country estate, the shock of that cold water is offset by its picturesque setting overlooking Lake Travis.
The 3.24-acre lakefront haven offers a luxurious resort lifestyle in Costa Bella, a private, gated community just 40 minutes’ drive from downtown Austin.
The 9,261-square-foot, multi-level interiors are grandly scaled, yet warm and inviting. The main level reception rooms open to a vast, covered terrace for alfresco cooking and dining. The upper-level patios offer intimate lounging spaces.
The terraced, bi-level infinity pool has a 180-degree sunset view over Lake Travis. The lower pool terrace is an entertainment locus with a bar, wine cellar, gym, loggia with fire pit, and hot tub. A path, paved for golf carts, leads past that cold plunge pool to reach the sunken conversation lounge and its fire pit.
To cap it all, there’s a private, deepwater cove on Lake Travis, with a protected, floating dock with a 28-foot HydroHoist boat lift slip and a ramp for two Jet skis.
The mind-body practice of meditation originated in the 5,000-year-old Sanskrit texts known as the Vedas.
Mindfulness will continue as a self-improvement trend in 2024, along with serene in-home spaces like the meditation tent at Villa Kelila, a one-of-a-kind resort villa in Ibiza’s prestigious Cap Martinet gated community.
Located close to old Ibiza Town, the idyllic Talamanca Beach, and the superyacht haven Marina Botafoch, the residence features 14 en suite bedrooms, all air conditioned and with sensational sea views.
The living room has a cozy fireplace for those rare chilly nights, an integrated media lounge and dining space, and it opens to the pool terrace. The renovated kitchen has professional-grade appliances and a laundry room.
The lush gardens were designed for recreation, rest, and relaxation. The infinity pool terrace has hammocks for lounging and recliners for sunbathing. The outdoor kitchen has a built-in barbecue and alfresco dining space.
There’s an Asian-inspired bar for concocting smoothies at dawn or cocktails at sunset, and a Finnish sauna and lounge to cool down or chill out; but the highlight is the tent-covered yoga platform, with a thatched teepee to take a siesta in the shade.
Rounding out the amenities is a discotheque worthy of an Ibiza nightclub: this one is an intimate cave-like space with lavish lounges cooled by zoned air conditioning and air filtration systems.
Saunas are a way of life in Sweden, Finland, and Estonia. They’re also a popular lifestyle feature in luxury homes like this stunning contemporary villa in the heart of Santa Monica.
Completed in 2022, the property is a sanctuary of tranquility with a private spa that features a wet/dry sauna with a Himalayan salt wall (reputed to impart extraordinary health benefits), as well as a fully kitted, ultra-contemporary gym space. A wine cellar, media lounge, and two showcase garages for the automotive connoisseur are further highlights.
Secure behind custom gates and fortress-worthy walls lie masterfully designed grounds and a home that artfully blurs the distinction between indoor and outdoor space. At its heart, a breathtaking retractable ceiling creates a sky-framed tableau above an elegant sitting room. The 21-foot automated Fleetwood doors open onto an idyllic outdoor haven, complete with a zero-edge pool, spa, and Zen koi pond.
The residence’s dual elevators serve seven en suite bedrooms, and 12 bathrooms (each a study in comfort and style). The main level features lofty ceilings and a thoughtful layout with a formal sitting room, comfortable family room, and two kitchens including an industrial-grade chef’s kitchen.
Upstairs are the primary bedroom (with boutique-style closets and an opulent bathroom) and an opposite upper wing with three en suite bedrooms.
Nothing compares to the sensory experience of a hammam, or Turkish bath, a sumptuous spa experience to cleanse the body in three phases (sauna, scrub, and massage) in serene, marble and mosaic-tiled surrounds.
But that’s only one facet of the charms of this beautiful Moorish palace in the most prestigious gated enclave of Marrakesh, Morocco’s Red City.
Palace Dana is at one with its resplendent setting in a palm oasis just outside the ancient citadel. Over the past decade, nature has enveloped the villa’s red walls and its verdant gardens shaded by olive and palm trees.
There are grand, voluminous reception rooms for entertaining and intimate spaces for conversation and relaxation.
Each of the seven bedrooms has a deluxe bathroom and a shaded terrace leading out to a secret garden.
The living rooms have a southerly exposure, allowing in abundant sunlight and a view of the Olympic-sized pool. The gardens surround a second outdoor pool and a tennis court.
The amenities are worthy of the finest health resort: Indoors is a hammam with a sauna and massage rooms, as well as two bars, and a temperature-controlled wine cellar.
Outdoors are two swimming pools, a panoramic terrace, and covered parking for 10 cars.
Wild swimming (that’s open-water swimming for those not familiar with its delights) will be among the top wellness trends again this year, but seaweed and frigid temperatures don’tappeal to everyone. For those who prefer aquatic adventures in the warm confines of home, there’s the indoor lap pool.
This trophy home in Mount Keira, in the coastal district of Illawarra, New South Wales, has an indoor lap pool with two 25-meter swimming lanes separated by a wall of glass from a 10-car showroom-style garage.
The home offers more than 12,000 square feet of sleek interiors with views of Illawarra Escarpment State Conservation Area and the Pacific Ocean.
Beyond the foyer are formal and casual lounges with balconies and terraces for alfresco enjoyment, and a game room with a bar and a cold room. Dual sweeping staircase rise to the upper-level quarters: five luxurious private suites and an office/sixth bedroom.
In addition to the lap pool and garage, the lower level houses a luxurious fitness suite (with a gym, multi-jet whirlpool spa, Swedish sauna, and shower) as well as a soundproofed music room and movie theater.
The lineup of health and fitness facilities continues outside with a floodlit tennis court, a leisure pool with a cabana and a swim-up bar, and level lawns for a game of cricket or croquet.