Laura has been visiting Umag and northwestern Istria for years, and she is a yearly competitor in the Istria Granfondo international cycling marathon. She came in first in the women’s category this past year.
How did you like what was offered at this year’s Wellness Moments, which services did you enjoy the most?
I found the selection simply fantastic. The shoulder and back massage was perfect for after my cycling training. I was most thrilled with the massage, because the masseuse devoted all her attention to me and completely relaxed my tense shoulders, which were full of knots, and which are under a lot of stress from cycling. The massage was strong and very thorough, it was great and I loved it. Then I also treated myself to some wellness at the saunas and in the massage tub. The space is very clean, comfortable and beautifully decorated. I tried the Finnish sauna, herbal sauna, wet sauna, and the massage tub. After my therapy, I felt completely relaxed and refreshed, and only a bit tired.
What can you tell us about the popularity of wellness on the Slovenian market?
I think that wellness is becoming more and more popular on the Slovenian market as well, as people are paying more attention to their health, taking part in sports, and focusing more on relaxation, so they are starting to enjoy things like massages, saunas, and other ways of relaxing more often.
Aside from the wellness selection, did you enjoy anything else the Sol Garden Istra Hotel had to offer?
Yes, the hotel room was quite nice. It had a sea view, a big, luxurious bed, and a modern bathroom. There was a wide selection of fresh and delicious food. I loved having my morning coffee in the hotel lobby. I also tried out the hotel fitness centre and the half-Olympic swimming pool.
How do you like training in northwestern Istria? What would you recommend to any athletes coming to our destination for the first time?
I’m a regular visitor to northwestern Istria. Over winter I’m here nearly every weekend, because the weather is almost always perfect for training. The temperature is around 10 degrees Celsius on average, it’s sunny, the roads are great, and there are both flat courses (Mirna river valley) and short (Buje, Momjan) and long climbs (Oprtalj). The nature is stunning, the sea, the vineyards, the beautiful hilltop and seaside towns. The drivers are mostly patient and polite. The comfortable Mediterranean climate and the scent of the sea follows us as we train. I also simply adore the delicious, healthy and inexpensive seafood offerings of the local tavernas, and the hosts are also quite friendly.
Wellness and sports are the ideal combination. What do you think about the benefits of wellness for athletes?
I think that wellness is highly recommended, if not vital for recreational and professional athletes. It is especially good for rejuvenating the body after training, it relaxes you and you feel good. I highly recommend it, and I would advise everyone to take advantage of it regularly so they can enjoy themselves as much as possible and improve their general condition.
Are you planning on coming to this year’s Istria Granfondo, which will be held from 6 to 8 October?
Of course! I’m excited about this year’s Istria Granfondo because I plan to ride long, Istria Granfondo Classic, course.