It was a dreamy, somewhat surreal feeling. As I sat in a rock pool, with a blanket of steam lightly hovering above the surface of the water, I felt someone’s stare fixed on me. There was complete silence aside from the gurgling of the hot mineral spring water in the pool. I looked around but didn’t see anyone, yet I couldn’t shake off the feeling that I was being watched. Ahead of me stood a forest of towering trees, their branches draped by thick snow. I was about to shift my gaze when I spotted it. There… behind one of the trees sat a deer. It poked its head around the tree and stared at me with its beautiful big round eyes. I smiled. It only lasted several seconds before the deer moved on but I felt so connected with this gorgeous creature and the tranquil snowy wonderland I found myself in. The effect Spa Scandinave Mont Tremblant was having on me was unmistakable. I closed my eyes and drifted away again.
A screech from the frozen river not too far away broke the silence and snapped me out of my dreamy state. I didn’t move a muscle. Instead, I chuckled – I knew exactly what had caused it.
Spa Scandinave Mont Tremblant
The Spa Scandinave is a beautiful spa nestled in the forests along the banks of the Diable River a few miles away from Mont Tremblant, Quebéc’s premier ski destination. Located less than a two-hour drive from Montréal, I soon discovered that it’s the perfect spot to unwind after a day on the slopes and rejuvenate.
Built on the slopes of the river, the spa consists of a series of wooden houses connected by stairs and bridges, creating a serene village-like setting. There are outdoor hot and cold pools, waterfalls, as well as indoor Finnish and steam baths. The main focus is relaxation in a tranquil environment – silence is strictly enforced – aided by hydrotherapy.
I started my visit with a terrific massage – nothing better than a thorough Swedish massage to get rid of all those knots in my back! After a cup of herbal tea in one of the resting areas, I embarked on my first hot-cold cycle: ten minutes in the Finnish sauna and a quick dip in one of the cold outdoor pools. After ten minutes in the sauna, I stepped outside into the freezing cold (it was -20 degrees Celsius outside) and proceeded gingerly into the cold pool. The cold water stung but the rush I felt was amazing! Ten seconds later, I was back in the warm confines of the resting area.
On my next cycle, I decided to stay a bit longer in the sauna. When I exited the sauna, I put on a robe and mustered up the courage to make the short trek down to the river. The river was completely frozen and covered with a thick blanket of snow except for one spot where the ice had been cleared. A series of steps led me down to the river where I discarded my robe. Below me, the small pool in the river beckoned. I put one foot into the freezing water and I immediately felt a wave of electric-like pulses rush through my body. I took a deep breath and gradually submerged myself entirely in the pool. I gasped and counted to five before hauling myself out of the pool. The sensation of the freezing water made me shudder and I quickly made my way back to the resting area. After several minutes, I felt it: a distinct warm glow enveloped me and I quite literally felt lighter. I’d not experienced such deep relaxation in a long while.
I repeated the cycle several times. As I sat in the hot outdoor pool, I counted the little snowflakes that landed on my arms and chuckled each time I heard a screech. That only meant one thing: another guest taking a dip in the river!
The Spa Scandinave Mont Tremblant is open year-round but the winter experience is absolutely magical. I left the spa feeling amazing. That night, just before I fell asleep, the image of that beautiful deer cropped up in my mind. It wasn’t a dream… but it sure felt like it.
Note: this post is the result of the #LoveWinter blogger trip, a collaboration between iambassador, Quebec Tourism, Tourism Montreal and the Canadian Tourism Commission. As always, all views expressed above are mine, and mine only.