Ayurveda by Giardino

posted on | updated on | by Zuri Girl

Stress, whether from work, home or family effects each and every single one of us and results in physical and mental breakdowns. Preventing it is difficult, but tackling it once it explodes is even more difficult. 

It’s tricky to find a Zuri Girl that hasn’t been hit with some sort of mental or physical breakdown at some point or another so we were thrilled when the 5-star Giardino Resorts launched the program “Ayurveda by Giardino” and asked us to check it out.

We headed to the sunny side of Switzerland for a taster session and hope we inspire you to do the same…here’s the scoop ladies!

An Idea is Born

The Giardino Resorts have always prioritized wellness. From their exclusive parabin / animal free cosmetic line dipiù Cosmetics to their Zurich Day Spa, we’ve seen them focus on something we should all think more about. Self Care.

Expanding deeper into this theme they recently decided to offer their guests more…as if gourmet food and gorgeous green landscapes are suddenly not enough! But seriously ladies, the family behind the Giardino name wanted to give their guests something with a longer-term effect than a posh holiday resort. Something that’s personalized. Something that revitalizes.  Something that can stimulate from head to toe and from mind to body. To trigger energy, release venoms and a give direction for healthier lifestyle habits.

Led by Executive Board Member Daniela Frutiger and Ayurveda therapists and specialists with support from Conventional Medical Practitioner Dr. Daniel Borer they created Ayurveda by Giardino – a program blending medical practices from hundreds of years ago with today’s Western needs.

As the tag line suggests “Get Back to your Own Rhythm”, the program offers individualized mind and body wellness rehabilitation and prevention programs based on Ayurveda ancient healing practices with a mix of current Mediterranean influences.

Welcome Ayurveda Style

Florence Steger greeted us with an herbal tea and private office overlooking the gardens. With her hair beautifully pinned up and lavender accented clinical spa coat we dove right into a 90-minute personal interview covering everything from sleeping and eating to working and fitness. 

Ready to immerse into self-care, we checked into the calming garden suite with Wellmondo Tea, Mineral Waters, Almond Oil and Ayurveda Reading Material greeting us. While slipping into yoga clothes, Frau Steger was using Zuri Girl’s personal constitution to brainstorm with the chefs and wellness team how to best target the discussed imbalances and personal goals with a focus on winter allergies and immune boosting.

Daily Program

The days were a nice balance of group programming mixed with individualized treatments and downtime. Each day began and ended with group meditation and gentle yoga at the indoor / outdoor bubble tent equipped with lavender carpeting, yoga mats and contrasting energizing sun-colored pillows. An oversized buddha greets you and candle-lit meditation awaits you.

During our stay, Frau Steger conducted 2 treatments of Abhyanga, an intensive full body oil massage intended to activate the lymphatic system, detoxify and rebalance the body by tapping into the nervous system. Other spa treatments include: Alkaline Baths, Steam Compresses, Sound Treatments, Ayurvedic Massages and Oil Applications.

Feeling a sense of exhaustion and detoxification after the treatment, we escaped to the poolside private pod using it as a hideaway book-nook and then rejuvenating later on at the indoor pool and sauna.

You can also spend the day cycling or self-reflecting. We found it essential to turn off emails, texts and phone calls to be able to tune out enough to really tune in.

Nourishing Foods & Drinks

Frau Steger works in tandem with the Kitchen Chef to create a menu specific to your constitution incorporating local, seasonal vegetables with medicinal herbs and Indian spices like garam masala and turmeric. The dish is always quite colorful and you have this feeling of “doing something good for my body”.

The ingredients will target your individual goals and trigger points like detoxification, cleansing and balance with a local twist. For example dandelion was often served as a tea with each meal, which helps cleanse the liver while Chervil played a big role in lunch one day as it contains plenty of iron, magnesium, potassium and zinc which can help with headaches, infections and inflammations.

Each meal included a 3-course menu nicely personalized on lavender and white stationary jazzing up the title to something that might otherwise be thought of as boring like Beet Carpaccio and Sweet Potato Rosti. Our dishes interlaced ingredients like fennel, lentils, root vegetables and often included a soup, salad and warm dish. Morning porridge was served alongside honey and stewed fruits and herbal tea was always a centerpiece.

The portion sizes are petite, but filling and there’s even a dessert at the end. We did miss the indulgence of chocolates and wine especially as most of the other dining room guests were overly indulging on holiday favorites. Trying to tune this out we focused on the mindset of recovery, prevention and mind / body nourishment.

Returning to Reality

Shortly after returning home, an email with a personal constitution and analysis arrived providing lifestyle tips. The suggestions were very practical and easy to incorporate including daily self-care practices, immune boosting regimes and imbalance red flag triggers.

Since leaving boiled water followed by ginger is part of the morning routine and with the winter bugs lurking, turmeric has become our 1-st line of attack.

Can Ayurveda by Giardino Help me? 

Prevention & healing are at the heart of the program targeting issues like Heartburn, IBS, Chronic Pain, Digestion, Sleep Problems, Anxiety, Skin Irritations, Allergies, Burnout, Rheumatic Diseases, Exhaustion and Lack of Energy.

Through holistic treatments, spiritual practices; natural supplements and local foods, individualized programs are created for each guest by the local Ayurveda Specialist.

You may choose from a 3 to 21 Day Program that fall into the categories: Compact, Restart and Detox, Pro-Aging, Musculoskeletal System, Family and Mid-Life.

The retreat will include a 90-minute analysis with an Ayurveda Specialist, personalized menus, daily yoga & mediation practice, Ayurveda wellness treatments and a post-departure lifestyle implementation guide.  Of course, at the hotel itself, you will also have access to their luxury pools, therapeutic spas, plush bedding and hotel perks like city bikes and calming views.

Zuri Girl Tips

Keep in mind it is a 5-star resort with “regular” holiday guests. So if sitting in the dining room while others are enjoying wine & pasta will be too tempting for you, consider enjoying your meals on your terrace.

There’s a lot of down time during the day so plan ahead how you wish to spend it. What have you been wanting to do for YOU that time has not allowed? Read a good book? Cycle?

Does being alone for so much time motivate you or discourage you? And would you prefer this alone time or ask a friend to join you?

Consider the program when packing the suitcase. It is a 5-star hotel so many guests will be dressed accordingly (especially in the dining room) but active-wear attire like yoga pants and leisure shoes will be best for most of your stay.

The Shirodhara oil is quite intense. While it’s more effective when soaked into the hair, we did find it took over a week to thoroughly rinse out.

Ayurveda by Giardino

Offered at Giardino Ascona | Giardino St. Mortiz | Giardino Zurich

Experience sponsored by Ayurveda by Giardino