There is something about the New Year that makes me feel like the possibilities are endless. On December 31st, I wrote out five primary goals that I wanted to accomplish. From there I think about the steps that are needed to achieve what I want in the new year. It shouldn’t surprise anyone that travel is part of my annual goals. That list of course includes a number of the destinations on our 24 Destinations for 2024, which we’re sharing this week.
As I’m inching closer to 150 countries traveled, it’s starting to become more challenging. But don’t worry, I got this, and it’s never been about the number. For me it’s the connections with communities, the humble impact I can make and to experience life. You don’t have to go to all 195 countries in the world to experience life. This year I hope that you get to the places that will just make you happy, whether that’s down the street or 5,000 miles away.
A Wellness Reset
Speaking of places that make you happy, we ran a feature last week on the places to reset this January and into the New Year. Health is our wealth. Without it, it becomes challenging for anything else to fall into place, much less enjoy life. Last month I took some time out of holiday parties to try out Palazzo Fiuggi, a new-ish wellness center about an hour and twenty minutes east of Rome. I am a SHA Wellness devotee, but it’s a necessity to do your due diligence if you’re going to be an expert at something. I know, it’s a tough job, but someone has to do it.
So while I could have been noshing on canapés and drinking cocktails, instead I went through the Palazzo Fiuggi Optimal Weight program. It was also by design that I did the retreat a few days before my birthday. For the last few years, I’ve been on a “be my best self” kick. If you read my note last month, I’m finally at a point where I feel better than I did at 25 years old. Places like SHA and Palazzo Fiuggi have been the foundation of my wellness outlook.
A Different Outlook on Wellness
There is never a time that I will not love SHA, even when there are imperfections in my experience. I have Reese Witherspoon Election tendencies at times, so the SHA program is perfect to fuel that need for results and high performance. When I arrived at Palazzo Fiuggi though, it felt like the complete opposite end of the spectrum. First, you’re right in the middle of town. This surprised me because on their website it looks like you’re in the middle of nowhere. Instead, you’re amongst all the shops, restaurants and center of the charming town of Fiuggi. Fiuggi is known for its healing waters, one of the core experiences of the wellness programs at the Palazzo.
Second, like its name suggests, Palazzo Fiuggi is an old palace from 1913. In its current incarnation as a wellness center, Palazzo Fiuggi opened in 2021. You roll up to Fiuggi and those classic palace vibes are clear, from the moment you step into the lobby. It’s crystal chandeliers, restored ceiling modelings, wood panel and frescos throughout. The furniture is contemporary but the bones of the building are 1900s palazzo, all the way.
We’ll do a full review on Palazzo Fiuggi. I’ll say now that the experience opened me to a gentler and more nuanced approach to wellness. For example, I did a treatment called “Trigger Point” to workout the tightness in my shoulders. The doctor did very little to my actual shoulders. Instead he put firm but not forceful pressure on a totally different part of my body that miraculously released my shoulders.
With other treatments like lymphatic massages and diagnostic tests that analyzed how I walked and my balance, I pushed into a new level of wellness. My mind was also opened up to how I don’t need to exercise harder, but rather smarter. This lesson is something that is how I plan to approach all this exciting 2024.
I hope that you have experiences in 2024 that open up your mind to new ideas. I wish you the best of health, and all the adventures we will go on together in this New Year.
All the best,
Christine Drinan, Founder