Sometimes short trips are the best trips. All it takes is a night in a fluffy soft bed (that you don’t have to make), a bathroom (that you don’t have to clean), and food cooked by somebody else to make you feel fantastic. Some gals and I tested out a couple little towns for just such weekends.
(1) Bad Nauheim: slightly North of Frankfurt, this little town is charming, with beautiful walking paths up the hill along a “Planetary Route” – as you climb you encounter the nine planets along the way. At the top, you are rewarded with a restaurant/café/winery – local grapes are growing all along the hill on your way up. We stayed at Dolce Hotel – a bit outdated, but the staff were lovely and even gave us a room discount due to a leaky shower. We enjoyed the Finnish sauna (~60 degrees), the Heiss Sauna (smoking hot at 90 degrees, and scented with honey and lavender), and the steam room, interspersed with tea and magazines in the relaxation room. For dinner, we headed out into town, and found that Germans believe not only in the restorative power of saunas, but also in the restorative power of large portions of alcohol and food. Detox to retox . . . a perpetual chicken and egg problem.
(2) Bad Zwesten: a miniscule town in the hills, with the most charming little spa hotel I’ve ever seen, Landhotel Kern. This is hominess at its finest. Rooms are themed, meaning you get your own private little pocket of the world, unique and all yours. I opted for the “Four Continents” room – suitable for me with walls covered in vintage maps, globes and journals on a desk, and otherwise outfitted with fluffy white towels and linens. My friend got the “Cat Room” – filled to the brim with cat pillows, paintings, bedspreads, and trinkets. She adores cats so. . . it was suitable. Otherwise, the hotel is a little bit different at every turn –hallways lined with ever-changing wallpaper, twisting rabbit hole-like corridors, a beautiful dining room and sunny breakfast room.
And perhaps the most fun bar seats you can imagine 🙂
It’s always nice to find somewhere with a truly unique feel to it. The surroundings of the hotel are perfect for walking, hiking, and breathing fresh crisp country air. We had purchased a weekend package, which included two nights in our room of choice, a three-course dinner one evening, breakfast buffet on both mornings, cake, coffee, and prosecco in the afternoon, massage, facial, and use of the sauna and steam rooms. All for 155 euro, an absolute steal of a deal.
Scattered around the hotel are various “relaxation rooms” – we made ample use of the Blue Room, lazing about after our massages and sauna-hopping with books and the best German afternoon tradition.