Le Nordik

Le Nordik is a Scandinavian spa that opened up in Chelsea a year ago. I got Bronwen a gift certificate for Christmas last year, and after months of talking about it, we finally made a date to go on Friday night. We were both in need of a little R and R, and this definitely did the trick.

The basic concept of the spa is hot, cold, rest. One chalet has a steam bath, another has a sauna. After 15 minutes of sweating, you head outside to cool off in a cold pool or under a 25 foot waterfall to “wash away toxins”. You can then head to another chalet to relax, hang out by the outdoor fire pit, or join the crowd in the hot tub. Repeat 2 or 3 times, and you’re done.

The steam bath was great. We walked in, and you couldn’t see a thing. I had no idea how many people were in there, where people were sitting, nothing. You’re not supposed to talk, so it was eerily quiet, too. We stumbled around until we found a bench, then sat down and began to sweat. And sweat. And sweat.

When we headed outside several minutes later, we were literally steaming (it was about 4 degrees). We tried the waterfall, and I was surprised how punishing it was. I expected refreshing – it was actually pretty painful. Suddenly it didn’t seem so cool to be outside in just a bathing suit.

The hot tub chased the chill away pretty quickly. We also sat by the fire for a while. It’s a spectacular setting – you’re completely surrounded by trees and rocky outcroppings. We couldn’t believe how much better we felt after just half an hour.

Bronwen and I grew to love the waterfall on subsequent rotations. Once you get past the initial shock, it’s amazing to have all this cold water pounding you all over. We were wide-eyed and giddy as we ran to grab our towels afterwards.

They also have a bar and small restaurant in the main chalet. On the way out, we saw a couple enjoying a chocolate fondue and wine by the fireplace. I think we’ll have to make time for a nightcap on our next visit.

If you’re thinking about going (and we highly recommend it), here are a couple of suggestions:

1. Go at night – it’s a really romantic setting, and everyone looks better by moonlight.

2. Bring a bathrobe if it’s a chilly evening. They give you towels, but they get soaked in the first 10 minutes.

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