Wagenküll: Stay at a castle and bathe in champagne
By Emma Rodin | Photos: Wagenküll
Perched on the top of a hill in rural Estonia, the Taagepera Castle with its Wagenküll Castle Spa is a sight for sore eyes. Like something from a fairy tale, this enchanting manor offers an escape for holidaymakers everywhere and happens to be Estonia’s most popular wedding venue. No wonder why.
Taagepera Castle in its modern form was completed in 1912 and was based on a design by Riga-based German architect Otto Wildau. It treats the eye to a symphony of asymmetrical shapes, with peculiar forms growing out of others, plus a 40-metre-high tower on the west wing of the building. Over the years, Taagepera has housed various establishments and events, and after one or two changes in ownership and a recent overall facelift, the castle finally became what it is today: the home of Wagenküll Castle Spa.
“The idea for our business name actually came about during the construction of the spa,” tells Liina Lõhmus. “Some beautiful, red bricks with ‘Wagenküll’ written on them were discovered during the works and it then became obvious what our new name and logo should be”.
Time to relax
Speaking of spa, this is (as the name suggests) a big part of the Wagenküll offering. In the castle’s basement, guests will find a 1000-square-metres luxurious spa- and sauna centre made up of an intricate network of vaulted halls, rooms and corridors. In addition to several pools, including an outdoor one with a beautiful sun terrace and removable rooftop, there are five different saunas such as the aroma sauna (55°C) and the Finnish sauna (70°C), plus a Japanese bath and a steam room.
In addition to the spa area, there are dedicated treatment rooms where a skilled team of therapists offer massages, baths, body and facial experiences, as well as treatments for future mothers and even for children.
“Our most popular treatment is our exclusive champagne bath for two which includes real champagne. It’s super memorable and loved by guests,” explains Lõhmus. “I think it’s because it’s something that most people won’t have experienced before”.
On top of that, the spa offers another one-of-a-kind treatment which includes a fresh grass exfoliator and hay particle bath or body treatment with fresh apples and a warm oil massage. Most treatments are inspired by the local nature and are developed with guests’ particular needs in mind.
Stay and take your breath away
Other than its impressive spa facilities, Wagenküll has around 70 hotel rooms spread across the manor and surrounding buildings, perfect for anyone looking to get some time away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life, without relinquishing any comforts. Offering a romantic, warm atmosphere, the castle is perfect for a couple’s getaway, but also for a family holiday or a weekend with friends. Additionally, Wagenküll provides a spectacular venue for business meetings and conferences.
What sets Wagenküll apart from competitors is the historical castle and how this influences everything across the business. “All our hotel rooms are different by size and shape, including four originally designed suites. One of them has a cosy fireplace and four-poster bed in the room which really adds to that castle feel,” tells Lõhmus. “Once a month, guests can also enjoy concerts in our Crystal Hall where performers are well-known Estonian musicians.”
Wine and dine
When hunger strikes, guests can pop by Wagenküll’s restaurant for the unique taste sensations of dishes that are prepared in a traditional charcoal oven. The beauty of this oven is that it preserves the juiciness and texture of food, giving dishes their delicious taste. Throughout the year, local produce from the forests and farms of south Estonia is used as much as possible, and the dishes are flavoured with herbs grown in the local gardens. The restaurant also has its own greenhouse where tomatoes, cucumbers, various greens and herbs are grown.
The complete package
For the full Wagenküll experience, guests can opt for a package deal with accommodation. Couples will like the ’Love Selection’ package which includes the famous champagne bath, while friends or families should enjoy the ‘Charms of Wagenküll’ deal. And, if you are planning a business trip, there is sure to be a relevant package with options for seminars and conferences.
If you plan on visiting in the summer, the much-anticipated Flower Festival is an absolute highlight. Themed Alice in Wonderland, this festival will take place in the castle’s park and is set to be a magical experience for adults and kids alike.
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