From Surrey to Thailand: The best hotels to do Dry January
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Overindulgence during the festive season leads to many resolutions for the new year. These range from Veganary (like the name suggests, going vegan for a month), taking out a gym membership or deciding to knock the booze on the head for January. One of the hardest things about going alcohol-free is finding adequate social situations that don’t revolve around having a drink. So if you also want to get away during this bleak and grey time of year, we’ve compiled the top spots to do Dry January — so you can get healthy, maybe lose a few pounds and make all your mates jealous with that perfect photo on the beach.
Malabar Lu Jong Retreats: This three-night retreat (21 to 24 January) is an introduction to Lu Jong (an 8,000-year-old practice of Tibetan healing yoga) set in the old town of Olhão on private property. It’s designed to promote physical strength, flexibility, boost the immune system and sharpen senses. This is a perfect peaceful yoga intensive retreat.
Price: £1,000 per person based on two people sharing. £1,300 for single use. Prices are all-inclusive except flights.
How to get there: Ryanair flies to Faro (FAO) from London (STN) for as little as £56 return in January. EasyJet, Jet2 and British Airways also fly nonstop. Avios prices start from 13,000 return.
Zighy Bay, Oman
Six Senses: This is perfect if you are in need of a bit of luxury pampering in January. This village-inspired resort has a range of villas, suites and beachfront rooms with private pools. Try the Arabian facial and spend time in the Moroccan hammam to enjoy a warm body wash and clay cleanse.
Six Senses holidays are about resting the mind and advocate good sleeping habits. There are sleep programmes designed by experts as well as handmade bedding and mattresses to ensure you leave rested and revived.
Price: Villas from £1,125 per night — room only. Breakfast is £35 extra per person. This property is not yet included in the IHG Rewards Club programme at the time of writing.
How to get there: British Airways and Oman Air fly to Muscat (MCT) nonstop from London. Prices run from £359 return or from 26,000 Avios return.
Kandy, Sri Lanka
Santani: This multi-award winning Ayurvedic hotel is set in the tropical hills of Sri Lanka. Luxury but minimal is the setting, with breathtaking views of this former tea plantation. The spa focuses on Ayurvedic principles (a form of ancient Indian medicine) where you can immerse yourself in a full programme or pick and choose a la carte.
Price: Seven nights from £1,755 per person.
How to get there: The resort is four hours and 30 minutes from Colombo International Airport (CMB). Fly with Sri Lankan Airlines nonstop from £650 return.
Los Cabos, Mexico
One&Only Palmilla: If one of your resolutions is to connect with your spiritual side or if you simply want to recharge, then majestic Mexico is your destination. From whale watching, horse riding, Shaman rituals, anti-ageing facials to pilates on the beach, you will leave with a revived mind and body and a new sense of purpose.
Price: Prices from £3,300 for five nights per room including breakfast.
How to get there: There are daily flights into Los Cabos International (SJD) from most major U.S. cities and approximately £620 return from London Heathrow (LHR).
Grayshott Medical Spa: Surrounded by 700 acres of National Trust reserve, this is a perfect getaway for those not wanting to go far from London but need a hit of wellness. Guests can choose from the signature gut-health regime and choose from the 65 treatments on offer including the detox massage, which is a mix of massage and lymphatic drainage plus a detox bath.
Price: Prices are from £220 per night, which includes all meals and use of the spa and classes.
How to get there: Trains from London Waterloo to Haslemere, or Heathrow and Gatwick are within one-hour driving distance from Grayshott.
Koh Samui, Thailand
Kamalaya Thailand: In need of a detox after Christmas and don’t fancy doing it yourself at home in the British winter? Consider a detox and a sunshine break in Thailand. This detox resort is set 50 minutes from Ko Samui. On offer are a series of detox packages, which suit the absolute beginner to a veteran detoxer. On the menu are cleansing massages each day, infrared saunas, colon hydrotherapy and a full detox menu.
Price: Detox packages start from £2,120 per person full board.
How to get there: British Airways and EVA Airways fly to Bangkok (BKK) from London Heathrow. A connecting flight to Koh Samui where the resort is is a 50-minute transfer. Prices are approximately £700 return, 39,000 Avios.
Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
Al Bait-Sharjah: If you feel like you can’t trust yourself when doing Dry January, then consider heading to the “dry Emirate” of Sharjah where selling alcohol is prohibited entirely (nor can you buy duty free and consume at the hotel — nice try). Just 30 minutes by car from Dubai, you can relax in in scenes of Islamic heritage and spend your alcohol budget in the spa on nurturing envelopments, rejuvenating beauty rituals and therapeutic massages.
Price: Bed and breakfast from £140 per room per night.
How to get there: Fly nonstop to Dubai International Airport (DXB) from £358 return or 26,000 Avios.
Read more: Three great uses of Emirates Skymiles
Mondrian London: If you don’t want to venture far from home, then the Mondrian is perfect for a few booze-less drinks after work or even an urban stay. On the menu is The Bradsell, which is made with cold brew coffee, peaches and split cream, peach shrub and ginger and soda.
Price: Rooms are from £199 per night. Mocktails are priced from £6.50.
How to get there: The nearest train station is Waterloo and underground station is Southwark.
After what may seem like a booze and calorie overload at Christmas, giving up alcohol for the month of January can be a great way to cleanse your system and lose a few errant pounds. But it’s not always easy when it’s cold and dark outside and spring seems so far away. So why not use some of your Avios to jet off to somewhere more pleasant to detox? Or use the money you would have spent on nights out.
Featured image by istetiana/Getty Images.
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