A Q&A with the team from Elysia Wellness Retreat
We speak to the team from Elysia Wellness Retreat. The team at Elysia Wellness Retreat are leaders in the wellness industry and strive to help you achieve a more balanced and sustainable state of wellness for mind, body and spirit through their retreat programs.
What is the ethos and vision behind Elysia Wellness Retreat?
To provide a safe haven for guests to learn new skills and habits to employ at home and work that promote a healthy lifestyle and mindset.
Where did the name Elysia come from?
It came from the Greek language where Elysia translates to ‘resting place’ or ‘home of the blessed’.
What does a typical day look like for one of your guests attending the retreat?
Whatever they would like! Our programs are designed for guests to do as much or as little as they would like during their visit.
We love to start our day with a tai chi practice on top of our beautiful meditation hill boasting 360 degree views of our hunter surroundings, this is the perfect way to welcome the day and build your chi (energy) as you clear your mind each morning, this is then followed by a mix of high and low intensity activity options all day for you to pick and choose from (generally one every hour or so).
Each morning you can enjoy an educational seminar based on your health and wellbeing with our knowledgeable and skilled program team and enjoy well-spaced meal times to compliment your activities. Surrounding this our guests enjoy some incredible spa and wellness treatments to help relax and heal the mind and body or enjoy our facilities such as our indoor and outdoor pools, tennis and basketball courts and fully equipped gym.
Can you tell us a little bit about the surrounding area in the Hunter Valley? How does this beautiful location influence your practices?
The Hunter Valley actually splits the Great Dividing Range with parts forming the Great North walk from Sydney to Newcastle. We are nestled between Barrington Tops to the north, Mount Sugarloaf and the Watagans to the south east and the Broken back mountain range to the south west. Lake Macquarie and Newcastle are directly east.
The area is traditionally a wine district however has grown in the tourist market over the last 20 years to incorporate fine dining, golf and wellness. We are often outside and deliver numerous classes in the fresh air, even hiking up to Mt Bright, the peak of the Brokenback range, on Saturday mornings.
Can you tell us about the space, the treatment rooms and the accommodation at Elysia?
Our day spa has 25 treatment rooms, where we offer our beautiful therapies which are designed to nourish your body, mind and spirit. The rooms are individually designed including our signature Wastu pool, private couples room, Vichy Shower, indulgent Geisha bath, divine facial and massage rooms. We also have a relaxation lounge, steam room and spa for you to enjoy before or after your spa experience.
We are situated right on the top of a hill overlooking our local vineyards, neighbouring golf course and the Brokenback range. All our suites have an amazing view of our local area and you can choose from a 1, 2 or 3 bedroom suite depending on how many guests you are travelling with. All our suites host separate bathrooms, a joint living area and balcony to soak in the view.
Can you tell us about the food at Elysia? What the retreat’s approach to nutrition?
At Elysia, our food philosophy is that eating should be one of life’s greatest pleasures.
We believe that considering the nutritional value of what we eat, exploring new tastes and textures, and preparing hearty food in a healthy manner is essential to lifelong wellbeing.
Our program of nourishing meals shared in the company of fellow retreat participants without the everyday distractions of home or work, television or digital devices will help you get back to basics. You’ll eat nutritious wholefoods, in sensible portions, at well-spaced mealtimes.
We encourage mindful eating to help us appreciate what we have, to slow down, and to be more in the moment. Nutrition, exercise and relaxation are the cornerstones of the Elysia philosophy and these combined, deliver a holistic approach to health and nutrition.
Your stay at Elysia gives your body a rest from red meat, alcohol, caffeine, sugar and saturated fat. We find our guests are less likely to return to the same excessive levels of these indulgences once they have had a break from them. This pause in consumption allows you to consider your diet and reintroduce ‘treat’ foods sensibly and in moderation.
Can you tell us about the seminars and workshops on offer? Who are they suitable for?
These educational seminars are research and evidence-based to support you as you build a solid foundation for personal growth, work/life balance, empowerment and for learning new habits and techniques designed to improve your physical, mental and spiritual wellbeing. These range from overall men’s and women’s health, stress management and sleep to nutrition and movement. You will experience all of our seminar series on both the 5 and 7 night package stays.
In your opinion, what sets Elysia apart and makes your experience unique?
Elysia is a fully immersive experience where the staff work to ensure each and every guest achieves an outcome that is relevant and achievable. Classes and spa treatments are on offer all day, allowing guests to make a choice between being active or resting and relaxing on a daily basis.
What is your favourite spa treatment on offer at Elysia?
There isn’t a specific favorite treatment at Elysia, all treatments are amazing and catered to mind and body and are dependent on how you are feeling as to what treatment you would have, for example today if you’re feeling flat and tired you might have acupuncture to help relieve stress and reenergize. As for treatment popularity, it changes from week to week which is why we have such a large variety on the spa menu to cater for everyone.
What are three things we can all do right now to stay well and enjoy a more relaxed lifestyle?
Sleep – get to bed half an hour earlier every night and rise at the same time daily
Just eat real food
Walk for 20 minutes (more if possible) daily
What’s next for Elysia?
Elysia’s mission and philosophy has always been and will continue to help motivate change and give you the tools needed for lasting results. Our popular and loved all-inclusive packages designed to reset your mind and body will continue to create a healthier, happier and more motivated you.