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What is a healing hotel, and what makes MySachaJi one?
From the moment they arrive at My SachaJi, guests feel a change in the atmosphere. It’s as if the air had been charged with energy, positivity and calm. It feels as if it has the power to heal.
But is there more to it than simply a feeling? Could it be that the Otavalo Ecolodge truly has the capacity to repair, restore and revive?
Healing Hotels of the World thinks so. The global brand, which carefully selects luxurious hotels with a focus on holistic health and wellbeing, chose My SachaJi to feature among its 100 or so partner hotels worldwide.
According to Healing Hotels Head of Operations Ina Jürgens, their partner hotels are places that can truly transform guests’ lives.
“Life changing and transformational experiences are at the core of each visit to a Healing Hotel. Guests come to change their habits and state of mind, and to re-balance and find happiness. What this looks like is very individual. The Healing Hotels provide the environment for guests to heal themselves,” she says.
A common misconception that people have about these special places is that they are simply spas or wellness centres. But the concept runs deeper than that.
“Even though spa treatments, nutrition and activities form a big part of the healing programs, it is also about the overall approach and especial commitment of healing that differentiates a hotel when comparing it to a normal wellness hotel. The effects of healing are much stronger and life changing. It is about a very healing journey,” explains Ina.
Dr. Petra Müller-Rupprecht, a General Practitioner also specialized in Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy who visited My SachaJi to award its certification, says that the location, facing onto the tranquil San Pablo Lake and Imbabura volcano, is the initial way that My SachaJi sets up this personalized healing journey.
“What makes it healing? First of all, the energy; the atmosphere created by its amazing position. The mountain gives you the impression of an inmense power, so you get an energetic input,” she says.
And there’s far more to it than that. Petra reels off a number of factors that impressed her: “there’s the privacy you get from only having 12 rooms, there’s a wonderful meditation room with huge glass windows, and the position -it’s in the middle of nowhere, in nature, no other houses. Nature itself is very healing,” she says.
Holistic dining is a strong feature in My SachaJi, with many ingredients coming from the hotel’s own organic vegetable garden, thoughtfully combined to make the most of each product’s nutritional value which, Petra says, gives an “overall impression of holistic health.”
This idea of holistic health is seen in every aspect of the hotel, from morning yoga and meditation classes –“if the owner is here she does yoga every morning with the guests, which is something that makes it really special”– to the sustainable architecture and treatments that focus on mind, body and soul. Some of these are indigenous ceremonies, performed by experienced shamans and local Andean healers.
Londoner Jaki Walsh visited My SachaJi October 2016 and completed a personalised, weeklong program. She arrived in pretty bad shape due to complications with food poisoning she picked up on the Inca Trail in Peru. Her experience was transformative.
“The treatments delve into your very core to refresh, revive and grow yourself from the inside out,” she says.
“The guidance and therapy provided a complete restoration to 100 percent recovery; in fact, I left feeling better than I could remember EVER feeling. Upon leaving, I literally could feel how less energized I was when I arrived. I had even stopped practicing kundalini yoga in the morning.”
Ina’s advice for anyone thinking of visiting a Healing Hotel is simply: do it!
“It is time well spent and well invested in your health,” she says. “The effects of a stay in a health hotel remain with you over a longer period of time.”