By Sara Darling
Arriving at Longevity Cegonha Country Club in the sunny Algarve, straight after a three-day outdoor arts festival in rainy Lille, was a shock to the system- in a good way. The peace was evident immediately and I felt instantly more zen.
My mission was to undertake to undertake the five day Insta Body Programme, to detox and cleanse my system, whilst enjoying five liquid meals a day. However, I was a little apprehensive as I had never done a liquid detox before, and certainly never limited my calories to 800 per day. But Insta Body beckoned!
Treatments for my ‘Insta’ body included a premium drainage-firming treatment which I can only describe as being in a personal sauna, where sweat just poured out in preparation for the cellulite-contour massage, where my legs and bum were pummeled to dispense the lumps and bumps- with visible results!
However, there is an aspect of relaxation in the programme, and I undertook a floatation session in a heated, salted, pitch black pool, which felt like being back in the womb; This was followed by a targeted massage which almost made me forget I hadn’t eaten solids for a few days!
Along with as much yoga, stretching, dance and spa action I could dream, was the perfect antidote to regenerate my sluggish body.
The small, yet spacious Country Club has everything you need in a retreat. Situated approximately thirty minutes from the airport, in the Albufeira neighbourhood, its stunning location is the perfect starting point for some serious zen.
Once you enter from the main road, the hotel is enveloped by trees and nature, and is encasing it an enchanted surrounding. Visible from my balcony was a pond with frogs and turtles, providing a delightful place for meditation and mindfulness.
Run by friendly, attentive staff, the Club has many returning guests, and, I noted many solo female travellers who come to soak up the Portuguese sun, and have some me time, and not all visitors undertake the detox programme. The Longevity caters for a diverse range of needs, and each programme is personalised to fulfill clients’ specific requirements. But many guests simply enjoy the scenery, healthy lifestyle options and freshly prepared food, whilst whilst using the facilities at the leisure.
However as I was on the juice-detox, I scheduled in a variety of energy bursting, super foods in a blended combination of juices, soups and protein shakes, five times a day. I never thought I would make it through a five day detox with only 800 calories a day, but with little else to worry about, being hungry was not on my agenda, as I focussed on me.
Detoxing can be a solitary affair, and I had to cope with my own headspace, but small daily group classes ranging from dance, burn it, yoga, astrology and energy healing were available to all guests, so your days can be as full or leisurely as you like.
If you are feeling energetic, borrow one of the hotel’s bikes and hit the local beach which is a twenty minute cycle away; Get directions from reception and make the most of the Algarve’s clean sea and sands. Alternatively, hit the tennis courts, or fabulously well-equipped 24 hour gym on site.
With the spa open from 10 to 7, it is easy to fall into a routine of soaking up the hot and cold rain showers, steam, sauna and infrared salt rooms pre lunch, and finish your circuit with a dip in the outdoors jacuzzi, before the sun reaches peak tan time.
Or have a pre-breakfast dip in the open air swimming pool, which is heated to 30 degrees from April to the end of October. Long enough to do lengths, it is the perfect temperature to refresh, it has the added bonus of being minutes from the guest rooms. The ideal spot to settle back on a lounger after lunch, and switch off with a book whilst enjoying the sounds of nature, and forgetting all your worries, whilst you truly kick back and relax.
With a full programme designed for every Insta Body guest, you also get a consultation with a nutritionist, personal trainer and an Epigenetic hair test to see any allergies. So whether your goal is to relax and recharge, detach and detox or simply soak up the stunning surroundings, whilst enjoying the facilities with a partner or friend, there is something to tick all boxes.
Offering a boutique, personal service throughout your stay, it is no wonder that many guests come back. For a taste of peace and tranquility- the Longevity provides the ideal location to rebalance and recharge- with the added bonus of fast wifi!
FACTBOX Longevity Cegonha Country Club www.longevityvilamoura.com,
+351 967 108 244
offers the 5-night Insta-Body programme starting from €1,571/£1,378 per person sharing a double room, or from €1,721/£1,510 per person in a single room.