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Ski and spa just go hand-in-hand – the combo of thigh-burning mountain pistes with soothing relaxation is something The Aficionados is keen on. Which is why Bad Gastein is very much on our radar. Located in the Hohe Tauern National Park in the heart of the Salzburgerland province, Bad Gastein is a cluster of belle-epoque buildings, church spires and narrow streets curling around historical landmarks. Add to the mix a gushing waterfall that literally crashes through the town’s centre and the emergence of steamy hot spa and healing thermal waters that rise up within the Tauern Mountains, you can see why tired skiers flock here for rejuvenation.
And tired you might be – Bad Gastein’s ski playground is made up of 200km of groomed pistes scattered over four different mountains, part of the Ski Amadé area, with over 1,000 metres of altitude which offers superb long downhill runs. Bad Gastein has its own snowpark too – 300 metres of sheer fun with 30 obstacles in the gauntlet to enjoy - perfect for those freestylers and jibbers. Even better the mountains of Gastein have varied slopes with deep snow which will please freeriders, especially the north-facing descents that keep their champagne powder until the afternoon with fast tree runs and gullies.
Back to those thermal waters, then. Luxuriate at Haus Hirt in its natural, holistic and soul-inspiring spa, located in the home of the Gasteiner Thermal Waters, loaded with minerals, elements and natural radon, filtered through the Tauern Mountains for 3,000 years. At Miramonte, the famous thermal waters of Bad Gastein flow directly into the hotel, which eases away all your ski woes and ailments. For something more unusual, take a trip underground to the healing caves, aka Heilstollen where a little train heads into heart of the mountain where chambers have been carved into the rock, benefiting from hot radon vapour – a remarkable, holistic and truly unique healing therapy.
With all this spa rejuvenation literally on tap, you’ll be able to make the most of your ski trip, traversing the scenic mountains before returning home for warming soaks in the thermal waters loaded with minerals. Just don’t forget to have a schnapps topped with whipped cream (or two) – it is a holiday after all.
Gorgeously eclectic, colourful and cheerful, this hotel is filled with well-positioned collectables and lively, modern takes on heritage prints and textiles, decorating this 'feel-good', family-centric foothold that graces a fantastic hillside overlooking the Monte Carlo of the Alps; AKA the spa resort Bad Gastein, Austria. A homely clasp that keeps you in good food, spa and stylish interiors before you hit the slopes or mountain pathways.