We stayed at the UAE's first fully-integrated wellness resort, and we left lighter, cleaner, with more energy, and a renewed sense of empowerment to continue our wellbeing journey.
In today's fast-paced and demanding world, the importance of self-care and prioritizing our well-being cannot be overstated. Taking time to nurture ourselves and recharge is not merely a luxury; it is an essential investment in our overall health and happiness. We often find ourselves caught up in the relentless cycle of responsibilities and obligations, neglecting our own needs – mental, physical, and emotional – in the process. However, by consciously seeking out nurturing environments away from the distractions and demands of everyday life, we create an opportunity for personal growth and renewal.
Wellness resorts provide a much-needed respite, allowing us to step back, reassess our priorities, and regain perspective. In these sanctuaries, we can reconnect with our inner selves, tap into our intuition, and gain clarity on the steps we need to take to lead a more fulfilling and balanced life. Ultimately, it is a recognition of our inherent worth and a commitment to nurturing ourselves, but above all, it is an act of self-love.
Nestled amidst the mangroves and silence of Ajman lies Zoya Health and Wellbeing Resort, the United Arab Emirates' first and only fully integrated wellness resort. Designed as a haven for rejuvenation, healing, and self-discovery, Zoya is more than just a resort; it is an exclusive clinic carefully crafted to nurture both the body and the mind. From the moment you step foot into this tranquil oasis, you embark on a journey that transcends mere relaxation, leaving you feeling not only better than when you arrived but armed with invaluable tools for your ongoing wellness journey.
Under the guidance and expertise of holistic medical and wellness professionals, each guest's retreat program is meticulously tailored through consultations with the resort's in-house experts. With a diverse range of nine distinct retreat programs available, – Wellcation, Immune Support, Detox, Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation, Weight Management, Liver Support, Rejuvenation, Get Fit, and Anti-Aging – Zoya ensures that there is a retreat program suitable for every individual's unique needs and aspirations. The host of proven benefits speaks for itself: enhanced digestion, improved skin health, heightened metabolism, strengthened immunity, and an elevated sense of well-being.
Although we weren't prepared in advance, Zoya's plant-based restaurant and juice bar operate under a strict "conscious food policy" ensuring that only the freshest, seasonal ingredients are used to create exceptional (and tasty) dishes. This also means that everything on the property is meat-free, dairy-free, sugar-free, gluten-free, alcohol-free, caffeine-free, and vegan. Did we go without coffee? Yes, we did. There are green tea and turmeric latte alternatives, but no espressos to perk you up in the morning. However, as people who rely on coffee to string two sentences together every morning, we can honestly admit that not one withdrawal headache was had during our entire stay. This is probably also due to the fact that we drank our weight in water.
Another point to note is that the portions are normal-sized (even though they feel small), and the restaurant has strict hours of operation. So no, you can't just order whatever you want, when you want – which for a terminal snacker like us was a huge gift. We were given exactly what our body needed, and not a bit more, which ultimately kept us from overeating (one of our vices). There were moments when we were hungry, to be sure, but while we never took advantage of the offer, if we really needed sustenance, the juice bar was always open with a healthy alternative to tide us over until the next meal.
However, the effects after 48 hours of 100 percent clean eating were immediate. We felt good. We felt lighter, more energetic, and alert. It was as if we'd been completely unclogged, uncluttered, and cleansed from the inside out.
How It Works
First, you will meet with a doctor who will speak with you to gain a better understanding of who you are, where you are coming from, what goals you have in mind, and your daily habits. This will be followed by a thorough medical examination and an evaluation. The doctor will then prescribe which treatments they recommend for you and create a bespoke program best suited for you and your goals. Each evaluation is undertaken in the hope that you will share this data with your own healthcare professional so you can continue your journey long after you've left the center.
You will also undergo BMI and strength analysis with state-of-the-art machinery that can tell you precisely which muscle groups you are using correctly, which muscle groups need improving, and where you have an uneven balance in opposite groups. In this way, your whole body is analyzed to help create a well-rounded fitness program tailored to you.
We were given several different treatments according to our needs while we were there. As soon as we arrived, we were given an oxygen treatment to increase oxygen levels in the body, which is essential for optimal cellular function, metabolism, energy production, and detoxification. It also promotes skin rejuvenation, enhances collagen production, reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and has a calming and soothing effect on the body and mind.
The information from our BMI and strength analysis was passed on to our personal trainer, who then prepared a bespoke physical workout plan. As someone who struggles with injuries when running, the NASA anti-gravity treadmill was heavenly. It had us running miles as if we were weightless on the moon. We broke a sweat, burned all the calories we'd eaten at lunch, and our feet never touched the ground or put weight on our joints. Running has never been more fun than when we were flying, and it was a truly singular experience.
We also indulged in a hot stone massage and a soothing Turkish Hamam, both performed adeptly by expert therapists. But if the massage treatments were dessert, the main course would have to be the unbelievably blissful Physio Waterbed Relaxation experience. It was pure and total surrender as we had never felt before, and we yearned to find ourselves back floating on that waterbed wrapped in the warm blanket. We cannot stress enough that this is a must if you need any kind of stress-relieving treatment.
Finally, we were treated to the Venus Legacy on both sides of our abdomen. A minimally painful body contouring experience (anyone who says it feels like a massage is a masochist), the effects of skin tightening, wrinkle reduction, cellulite reduction, and circumferential reduction are immediate. We measured ourselves before and after – it was a three-centimeter difference.
As you explore Zoya's pristine grounds, you'll discover a myriad of wellness-focused amenities. From state-of-the-art fitness facilities and a calming swimming pool that also boasts an aqua gym (they have unlocked a genius idea for doing cardio with all the ways you can get your heart beating without bearing any weight) to the yoga and meditation room, your path to wellness is structured for tranquility and variety.
The resort is located on the Al Zorah Golf Club, so not only does it give you a lovely view from your room, but it also provides golf lovers with yet another outlet for stress relief and enjoyment. We loved the hot and cold plunge pools in the spa as well as the sauna and steam room, but our favorite activity was taking the resort bikes for a ride down the trail past the mangrove forests of Al Zorah, the lagoons, and all the way down to the shore. It was truly blissful.
From its idyllic location to its transformative programs and luxurious amenities, Zoya offers an all-encompassing experience that goes beyond a typical vacation. By immersing yourself in this sanctuary of well-being, you embark on a personal journey of self-discovery, leaving you with a renewed sense of purpose and a treasure trove of tools to guide you on your ongoing wellness path.