Need to know
11am. Earliest check-in, 3:00pm.
Shou Sugi Ban House is completely substance-free, so there’s no alcohol served on-site The retreat is purposely low-tech, too, so you won’t find a TV screen in your room (but there is super-fast WiFi throughout).
At the hotel
Outdoor saltwater pool, spa with hydrotherapy circuit, sauna, steam room and solarium deck, gym, yoga, Pilates and meditation studios, organic vegetable and herb gardens, orchard, tennis court, fire pit, on-site parking and free WiFi throughout. In rooms: gas fireplace, garden patio, underfloor heating, organic bath products.
Our favourite rooms
Each of the 13 stand-alone, cedar-built studios is the same size, so you really can’t go wrong; the only main difference between rooms is the type of bath tub: some have wooden onsen-style tubs and others have more modern whirlpool baths. Inside, the aesthetic is minimal with wabi sabi influences and biscuit-coloured accents that pay homage to the golden dunes on the beaches nearby. Plenty of light streams through the floor-to-ceiling glass windows and beauty sleep is practically assured thanks to organic mattresses and lighting system designed around Circadian rhythms.
In the summer months, while away afternoons by the heated outdoor saltwater swimming pool, dotted with white parasols and cushioned sunloungers.
Inspired by the rolling ocean breakers just two miles away, water and hydrotherapy are the main themes at the impressive spa. There’s a watsu pool, hot and cold plunge pools, infrared and dry saunas, an aromatic steam room, a rooftop solarium deck and a relaxing lounge serving snacks and tea. The treatment menu runs the gamut from the traditional (youth-restoring facials, invigorating massages, reflexology, scrubs and wraps) to the alternative (reiki, crystals, sound journeys and shamanic healing). You can also take treatments in your room, if you prefer.
Lots of lycra for active mornings, sleek swimwear for the spa and luxe loungewear for cosy evenings in.
All public areas and one bedroom are adapted for wheelchair users.
Leave little Smiths at home this time – Shou Sugi Ban House is for ages 16 and up.
We hardly have space to list the hotel's Earth-friendly initiatives: all food is hyper-seasonal and either sourced from surrounding farms or grown on-site in the gardens. As well as using geothermal heating and cooling, solar panels, reclaimed building materials, salvaged furniture, green cleaning products, locally-made soap and a fleet of electric Teslas for shuttling guests, they’ve also made an effort to hire as many staff as possible from the local area.