Thursday, September 22, 2011

Wellness Weekend in Egerszalok

Last weekend my husband and me were a long wellness weekend in Egerszalok, the Hungarian Pamukkale.
Egerszalók is a small village 7 km from the famous wine city, Eger, at the foot of the Mátra Mountain. The most important sight is the thermal spring breaking out in the southern part of the village with the salthill created by the spring.
Until the summer of 2007 the village has a small nomad thermal bath with two open-air pools and without any buildings and infrastructure.  It was funny to arrive at the bath in bathrobe in the snowy winter. We just took the bathrope down and splashed into the steaming hot water. The best program of the bath was the night bath: it was opened till late night. A lot of friends from Budapest often took the 120 km long journey to Egerszalók after the work for  just splashing in the night.
And the changes had to come. In the beginning of the 2000 years the plans of the development were born.  The locals and the fans protested. The modern thermal bath with 17 pools (whirpools, thermal pools), the most of them are covered,  was opened in the summer of 2007. And everything was changed. Instead of the cheap night bath a more expensive entertainment bath was born. Nowadays the friend from Budapest  don’t travel to Egerszalók for a night bath, Egerszalók is a weekend program.

In the same time in the neighbouring village, Demjén, was built an other thermal bath with 5 outdoor pools and some slides. This bath use the same thermal spring like Egerszalók. Last year two covered pools were built. With the cheap prices and the open-air freedom it became the competion of the Egerszalók complex very soon. And it is open till 2 o’clock at night.
In the surroundings of the Egerszalók thermal bath some hotels were built in the last few years. In the village we can find guest houses and aparments for staying.
The newest hotel of Egerszalók is the Saliris Resort**** opened in 2010 is under the roofs of the thermal bath. The room prices include the free entrance to the thermal bath.
The Saliris Resort deliberately does not follow current fashion trends since here the natural environment is the key to everything: in the interior areas materials in earthy colours exude elegance. That is true for example of the Pakistani salt tiles that lend the bar and reception a special atmosphere, the Makassar ebony that gives the public areas their air of distinction and elegance and the handmade unique wallpapers.
The interior design of the hotel was guided by the principle that guests should be surrounded by premium-quality materials in the rooms too.
The Saliris Resort has 203 rooms: 190 standard rooms (of which 50 are connecting), 9 suites, 1 presidential suite and 3 disabled-accessible rooms. All rooms are equipped with a flat-screen television providing access to almost 20 channels, telephone, internet connection, mini bar, safe, air heating-conditioning and coffee/tea-making facilities. All rooms have a terrace.
Room rates from 95 EUR/2 nights with halfboard
More information and booking: Saliris Resort Egerszalók
The hotel guests can use the bath from 7:00 to 22:00, however the bath guest can use it from 10 to 19 o’clock. So the hotel guests have some private hours in the bath.
During our weekend the best program was to go down to the bath after dinner and relaxing in the almost empty pools . We feeled like it was our private thermal bath.
We didn’t bath and relax only. We walked on the promenade built around the thermal bath and the salthills. The walk from the hotel to the salthill is cca 30 minutes, so it can be a good program before dinner. The walking route drives through a relaxing park with ponds, then next to the thermal bath and ended at the salthills and the thermal wells supplying the thermal bath and the neigbouring hotels ’ pools.
The thermal spring created a salt hill with the surface area of 1200 m2. With the development of the bath the salthill surface was increased to cca 1900m2. Now there are 3 hills. It is interesting to see the process of the nature salthill building from the pools of the bath.
Next time I will talk about the other attractions of the Egerszalók village, like the cave dwelling and the wine cellars.

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