If you’re looking for a cool escape with a difference, The LuxPad has found the perfect place in The Retreat at the Blue Lagoon, Iceland. Located in one of the 25 Wonders of the World, the Retreat is the Blue Lagoon’s first luxury offering since its significant expansion. The perfect place to leave the world (and the hot weather) behind and enter a timeless realm of relaxation and rejuvenation, The Retreat can be found on a private inlet of the Unesco Global Geopark. Featuring the subterranean Retreat Spa, geothermal Retreat Lagoon, 62-suite Retreat Hotel, and Moss Restaurant, there’s a world of facilities for guests to enjoy.
Set in centuries-old lava and surrounded by the Blue Lagoon’s revitalising waters, The Retreat is the first hotel of its kind in Iceland. With a minimalist aesthetic, each of the 62 suites are designed to bring the dramatic terrain of Iceland in-room, with floor-to-ceiling windows, and lighting that mimics the phases of the sun. Accommodation is split across two levels, the suites on the lower level feature private terraces, providing views of the lava and the surrounding lagoon, some with direct access.
The Retreat offers guests their own induvial hosts, serving as guides and attendants for the duration of their stay. From managing itineraries, confirming tour bookings, providing insight to local culture, or informing guests of the imminent arrival of the Northern Lights, Retreat hosts provide the ultimate in personalised service. This intimate approach to hospitality is also showcased each afternoon in the Lounge by honouring an Icelandic tradition – afternoon coffee. A ritual that occupies place in the hearts of Icelanders, afternoon coffee evokes a familial feeling with lively conversation and freshly baked goods.
Guests can enjoy a subterranean wellness experience like no other at the Retreat Spa. Built into an 800-year-old lava flow on the south shore of the Blue Lagoon, it transports the mind and body to new dimensions of peace and rejuvenation through nature, design, and the radiant powers of geothermal seawater. The Spa features a steam room built into the lava rock; a cold well; in-water massages; treatment rooms offering bench massages and beauty treatments; a Spa restaurant; and much more. Exclusive to the Retreat is the Blue Lagoon Ritual, a spacious sanctuary of interconnected chambers where guests cover their bodies with the three treasures of geothermal seawater – silica, algae and minerals. The Retreat Spa also allows guests to access the Retreat Lagoon, a new Blue Lagoon experience where the mineral-rich water flows around the Retreat through a terraced concourse of lava.
Alongside unlimited access to the entire Blue Lagoon facility, guests of the Retreat are invited to enjoy yoga each morning, and guided hikes exploring the striking geological features of Blue Lagoon’s volcanic surroundings are also available. The Retreat can also arrange a wide array of private excursions including touring the stunning volcanic phenomena of the Reikjanes Peninsula; experiencing Iceland from the sky in a private helicopter tour, riding an ATV across black sand beaches and hiking sprawling lava fields and extinct volcanoes.
Staying true to the land and local culture, the Retreat has worked with renowned Icelandic Artist Ragna Róbertsdóttir to create a lava-based wall installation for Modd and Lagoon Suites. Inspired by Iceland’s volcanic, tectonic, and oceanic provenance, Ragna’s work often blurs the distinction between nature and architecture – much like the philosophy of the Retreat.
The Retreat is primarily furnished with classic pieces by B&B Italia and an extensive number of bespoke pieces designed exclusively for the Retreat. These creations, made possible by the B&B Italia contract division, include reproductions of celebrated furniture by Icelandic designers.
The Retreat is also home to a rotating exhibition of a 1,600 piece ceramics collection from the Icelandic Museum of Design & Applied Art. Found in the Retreat Hotel’s lobby gallery, the first exhibit will showcase 50 works from the 1960s and 70s, a period characterised by the technique of fastening lava to clay before firing and glazing the pieces. Named after the Reykjavik pottery studio that popularised this method – Gilt – these objects tell the story of a unique moment in Icelandic clay art.
A longtime vision finally achieved, the Retreat has been brought to life by those who originally developed the Blue Lagoon. “We’re proud to finally be able to share the Retreat at the Blue Lagoon Iceland with the world,” says GrÍmur Sæmundsen, founder & CEO of Blue Lagoon Iceland. “Our team and partners have worked extremely hard to bring this luxury experience to life and we are all beyond excited to welcome guests to our new property.”
Suites start from £1,029 a per night – to make a reservation visit retreat.bluelagoon.com