Six Senses Vana – a new ‘health & healing’ hotel to arrive in India

Six Senses Vana, the latest addition to the Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas portfolio, is slated to open this autumn in the Himalayan foothills of India. From mantras to meditation, massages and activating the mula bandha, Vana will lead guests with a soft heart yet steely hand to a profound and purposeful transformation…

spa and pool at Six Senses Vana

Vana resort has, for many years, been a sanctuary for rebalancing, healing, and learning, based on its aspiration to help guests achieve the best spiritual, emotional, physical, and intellectual potential. It offers guests a journey of self-discovery and transformation, where everything is personalised, and traditional practices such as Ayurveda, yoga, and Tibetan Medicine are integrated alongside the latest complementary therapies into a daily routine, nudging guests gently along their path to vitality. Vana’s approach has always been authentic and soothing yet determined and effective – honouring and building on these foundations, Six Senses is excited to bring this much-loved and well-established wellness gem into its portfolio.

Never shy of defying convention, Six Senses has built its success on its commitment to wellness, and the goal is to work with Vana’s team to weave in new experiences to the existing formula offered by the retreat and bring it to a broader global audience. The property is also a great addition for the brand in India, alongside Six Senses Fort Barwara in Rajasthan.

“With its ancient healing traditions and spiritual practices, India has long been heralded as the ultimate wellness gateway and, in a gentle but intentional way, this plays to who we are too,” said Neil Jacobs, CEO of Six Senses. “Vana comes to us with a strong philosophy and loyal Vanavasi clientele manifested by founder Veer Singh. The seed was sown in Veer’s mind through his deep interest in and respect for sustainable farming, traditional wisdom, and nature, which we will continue to nurture under the Six Senses brand. This marriage made in the Himalayas allows us to build on what exists with some of our signature experiences.”

Vana means forest, and indeed it is tucked away amid organic kitchen and herb gardens in a sal-tree reserve within India’s lush and leafy Mussoorie region. Close to Rishikesh, the birthplace of yoga, and north of Dehradun on the approach to the Himalayas, this is a place to rediscover one’s own path.

There is no one common objective that guests come to achieve, and the arrival consultation will continue to guide the entire journey with a wellness screening providing additional analysis and insights. Each guest’s uniqueness is fundamental to creating a personalised program with ancient practices, complementary therapies, and plenty of movement. Some wish to focus on natural healing, deepen their yoga practice, or address their weight holistically; others come for Panchakarma, or rest and relaxation.

“Vana becoming Six Senses Vana is the most natural and logical progression for this precious and beautiful retreat,” said Veer Singh, Vana founder. “I am humbled by the care and sensitivity Six Senses has shown to protect and nurture everything good about Vana. I am excited to see how they will deepen and strengthen our current offering and complement it with signature experiences they have successfully tried and tested around the world. I see no reason why Six Senses Vana will not become what we set out to be when Vana first opened: the most iconic wellness retreat in the world.”

From this autumn, guests will be able to try their hand at making their own spa products at the Alchemy Bar and enhance their recovery with a biohacking offering. Sleep With Six Senses will ensure guests dismantle old habits and reverse physical or mental exhaustion using smart tools and guidance to sleep soundly and wake up ready to embrace each day.

In India, food has always been seen as an offering to the divine, and the retreat’s mindfully prepared menus match the Eat With Six Senses guiding principles of natural ingredients, local and sustainable, and less is more. The organic gardens are being extended so that ingredients can be influenced by the seasons and personal preferences while being themed to the location, contributing to the preservation and revival of local culture and traditions. The cuisine will therefore be grown in, not flown in, and indigenous and intentional.

The bar will serve healthy drinks, shrubs, and tonics and become a gathering point to activate the power of the ‘we’ in wellness. Along with a lifestyle concept store for sustainable fashion and spa products, there will also be a Cinema Paradiso, courts for various ball games, and experiences that tap into the retreat’s location to encourage movement and reconnection with nature.

There’s a healing power to art and music, and creative expression can be an emotional and somatic lifeline. Exhibitions, visiting artists, and performances will continue to be woven into the retreat’s programming. Whether guests come alone or with friends or family, they will leave having connected with a whole new Vana family.

Sensitivity to ecology has played an intrinsic role in the resort’s thinking – creating, and maintaining harmony with the natural world. Energy, water, and waste are managed effectively in LEED Platinum certified buildings, and all textiles and solvents are sourced in compliance with sustainable standards. These principles are aligned to core values at Six Senses, communicated through the Earth Lab, where guests are encouraged to be the change they want to see during hands-on and light-hearted workshops. Regenerative travel experiences will offer guests a tangible connection to the local community and wildlife projects, infusing their Vana journey with purpose and positive impact.

As a mindful oasis away from India’s trademark, intense colour, noise, and activity, the natural-toned rooms and suites, all with balconies or terraces, look over the sal forest or gardens and are comfortably appointed to evoke a sense of harmony.

Main image credit: Six Senses Hotels & Resorts