I did it: naked in a wine bath

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This post, written by Pauline Versace, was a finalist in the 2015 Guest Bloggers' Program sponsored by the Great Wine Capitals Global Network.

I have always found that the option "wine bath" at the spa was going too far. One can drink wine, cook with wine, write about wine, dream about wine or make wine, but bathing in wine? It is excessive, and especially wasteful.

Except that ....

I visited Entre Cielos today, a sumptuous luxury wine & spa hotel and international winner of the Best of Wine Tourism 2013 in the category "Innovative Experience". Between tasting and visiting rooms, my charming hostess invites me to undress once we reach the spa. To make things better (or worse), the owners of the place are Swiss. So far so good, but those who have been to a spa in Switzerland know ... that one goes naked.

Entre Cielos-Hamam Center (Photo credit:  Entre Cielos)

Visibly lovers of Turkish baths and attached to their Swiss spa habits, the owners re-created a successful concept of hammam and vinotherapy, just 20 minutes away from Mendoza, in addition to their three hectares of Malbec and 16 rooms hotel, member of "Small Luxury Hotels of the World".

"Get naked for the wine bath!" Not easy to refuse, even politely. I carry myself with the thought that this is not fair, no one is forcing food journalists to bathe in sauerkraut.

But the place is exquisite, and I gladly wrap myself in a cotton scarf Made in Turkey, very soft and delicately scented. A young lady guides me to the hot room, hot, really hot, and collects me half-cooked after ten minutes, steaming. As I almost faint, she looks at me: "¿estás bien? " Not really...

Entre Cielos-Hamam (Photo credit:  Entre Cielos)

She then invites me to rub my buttocks with an exfoliating glove, and then bathe in a 40 ° C pool, then rub again, and finally.... slip into a wine bath. A dark room decorated with pretty candles, a bath with mosaic tiles filled with hot liquid colored in a Bordeaux Clairet shade, and a glass of chilled Sauvignon Blanc on the edge. Naked bottomed I inhale, not smelling much I taste, and ... nothing. The bath has no taste.

Would they have lied to me? I decide to immerse myself, glass in hand. I look like a jetsetter gone bad and dedicating an weird passion to wine. But the relaxing effect is quickly felt, unless it is Sauvignon Blanc?

Entre Cielos-Hamam (Photo credit:  Entre Cielos)

I try to relax while monitoring my toes protruding from the red liquid, as stressful thoughts assail me: I hope I will not turn blue, like the late evening lips ... Fortunately the setting is divine, as the spa is designed with refined materials, like concrete and natural skylights. While I ponder on the composition of the thin white foam that floats on the surface, the pretty Turkish towel which I use as a pillow slips into the water, er in wine. I have to recover it and wring, I feel I am cleaning my kitchen after a party, definitely not the best.

That is when the young lady saves me from disarray and collects me for a massage. The massage .... One chooses the oil (for me it is lavender-eucalyptus because after all that wine, I need a little boost), and flies away. After days of trudging in the Chilean and Argentinean vineyards, after 8 hours by bus crossing the Andes and numerous wacky adventures that I will tell you one day, this massage was one of the best in my life.

Entre Cielos-Hamam (Photo credit:  Entre Cielos)

I enjoy one last moment to rest in the very Turkish style quiet room of this magical spa. Upon leaving, the clean and biting autumn air from Mendoza envelops me. "Back to real life" whispers the young lady as a "good luck". Real life, here in Mendoza, is fine by me.

Entre Cielos – Luxury Wine Hotel & Spa Luján de Cuyo Mendoza, Argentina www.entrecielos.com

Pauline Versace – www.flynwine.com