Story by Barbara Penny Angelakis
Photography by B. P. Angelakis & courtesy Primland
THE SPA AT PRIMLAND
2000 Busted Rock Road
Meadows of Dan, Virginia 24120
Toll Free: 866.960.7746
Entering the Spa at Primland is an ethereal experience. Open the double glass doors; let them close behind you; and take a breath. The magical Indian flute music seems to dance straight into your heart as a soft, warm, heaviness envelopes you and at the same time you feel the weight of all that you have been carrying on your shoulders and in your head drop away, leaving you with a sense of peace and balance. You feel inclined to smile and as you approach the registration desk your smile is returned by lovely Robin.
Robin explains inspiration for the spa was derived from the Indian tribes that were the original inhabitants of the Dan River basin. Although over the years eight tribes inhabited the land now known as Primland, the Cherokee are the best known. The spa reflects the spiritual platform that underlies all American Indian beliefs; belief in the circle of life as reflected by the medicine wheel; harmonizing with nature and honoring the natural order of the universe; mindful of the sacredness of body, mind and soul, and the connectedness of all living things to the Great Spirit.
The spa is designed in a medicine wheel circle – no beginning, no end – with the treatment rooms in the sacred inner space. Construction is with local materials of wood, stone and marble. The color scheme of turquoise and tan mirrors the sky and earth – American Indians believed the turquoise stone was a piece of sky that had fallen to earth bringing spiritual energy to bond with earth energy. They also believed that we can learn a lot about our behavior by watching animals and derive good medicine from their teachings. Therapists each offer the “Medicine Cards” by Jamie Sams and David Carson, as a way to connect with your newly balanced internal condition after each session. After your treatment you are invited to choose a card and read the lesson the animal has to teach. You are then invited to retire to the relaxation room, which looks out over the landscape, sip a special tea blended to help eliminate toxins from the body, and reflect on the teaching.
Garance Pimat, one of the Primat family owners is primarily responsible for the spas organic design. Garance, whose middle name is Virginia after the state where Primland is located, has a deep connection to the land and her love of nature and dedication to protecting the environment are evident in every aspect of design.
I was early for my Primland Signature massage so Robin, after fitting me for spa slippers, directed me to the small but well organized dressing room where my locker contained a comfy terry robe. I changed into my bathing suit for a dip in the chlorine-free co-ed Jacuzzi and pool which opens on a broad terrace overlooking the spectacular golf course. But I was waylaid by the spectacular Spa Horizon, a Clair Azur mosaic spa located in the women’s locker room. The steam room, or Turkish bath, also in the women’s locker room, registered 56º Celsius and proved too hot for me, so I took my pleasure in the Spa Horizon hydrospa, trying all five ergonomically designed positions. Afterwards, I was unable to locate a swimsuit dryer so I wrapped my suit in a towel and cozy in my robe, retired to the relaxation room to let the music sooth me until Holly came to collect me.
Only Naturopathica, natural organic products, essential oils, crystals, feathers, and stones, are used and there are almost 50 different beauty and wellness treatments offered. Therapies designed by Sylvie Keo, one of France’s top spa consultants, has blended sophisticated European techniques with traditional holistic practices, to achieve the best of both worlds. So I experienced familiar hand movements during my massage, but my feelings transported me to a different reality leaving me floating in a bubble where only I existed. I attributed this feeling of extreme well-being to the Indian culture that permeates the spa and which I absorbed upon entering the doors.
After such a wonderful experience I looked forward to the signature facial I was scheduled to receive the next day. This time Brenda was my therapist and again I experienced a treatment unlike all others. The signature facial incorporates a back massage with foot and hand manipulation so that even before Brenda got to work on my face, I was in la-la land. Whatever she did was magic because my face was positively glowing, puffy eyes gone, and chin firm and tight. I wish I had time to experience more of Primland’s Spa therapies, although there was a possibility that I would be able to fly home sans plane if I had more than one treatment a day. So until next time… thank you Holly and Brenda.
Primland is located on 12,000 acres in Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. For information on getting there visit http://primland.com/getting-here/
© July 2011 LuxuryWeb Magazine. All rights reserved.