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Interview with Alberto Apostoli, maestro of spa and wellness design

We’ve fallen in love with the architecture of the fabulous Lefay Resort & Spa Dolomiti, one of our favorite spas in Europe, so we wanted to talk to Alberto Apostoli, its designer. This Italian interior architect is known as one of the world’s leading designers of spas and wellness areas. Meet a visionary.

Atrium, Spa & Beauté in Mâcon, France

In your opinion, what are the most important factors in creating a quality spa?

To create a quality project, it’s essential to analyze the specific nature of each location. There can be no wellness without successful integration into the environmental, cultural and historical context.

We loved the new Lefay Resort Dolomiti. Where did you find your inspiration?

Our firm created the interior architecture for the entire resort, including the private residences. We realized that the alpine ambience of spas was a concept we’d seen over and over again, and so we wanted to do something more design-oriented, more Italian too, with a minimalist feel and a very thorough wellness approach.

Lefay Dolomiti indoor pool (Photo: Luxe Wellness Club)

The aim is to make customers feel that at Lefay Resort, everything is about well-being.

Among all the projects presented on your site, we were struck by the Aqua Regalis Medical Spa project in Dubai. Is it just a concept, or is it a project under construction?

Aqua Regalis Medical Spa in Dubai

Aqua Regalis isn’t just a concept, it’s a real project, which is currently being finalized in terms of plans and finance. It’s a new concept that will be exported to other regions, combining a cutting-edge medical approach with top-of-the-range accommodation – the future of wellness. The design phase will be completed by mid-2022, but construction will probably not be completed until around 2025.

Dhara spa at Lake Garda

We’ve heard that a new Lefay Resort is opening in Tuscany and that you’re involved…Can you tell us more?

The Lefay Resort in Tuscany will be an extraordinary project, in an incredible place not only for its location, but also for its historical context. It will be an ecological project, in line with the other Lefay resorts, but with a lot of spirituality. It’s a place that encourages introspection. We’ll be working hard on materials to respect the region’s age-old traditions, reinterpreting the Sienna clay theme… To be continued.

Portopiccolo spa in Italy

Do you personally travel to wellness hotels? If so, what are your favourites?

Yes, I often visit wellness hotels, for pleasure and to better understand the sector. I was particularly struck by the Pullman Lijiang Resort and SPA in China, a hotel made of stone and wood, with low buildings surrounded by bamboo, and one of the most advanced medicalized spas I’ve seen. I also love the Cape Weligama Relais & Chateux in Colombo (Sri Lanka) for its magical location and the impact it has on your stay. In Europe, I particularly like Euphoria Retreat in Greece, an unusual place that looks like a traditional village yet is modern. As soon as possible, I want to go to Tokyo to Hoshi No Yu. For anyone interested in wellness design, Japan remains a key source of inspiration.

How do you see the future of spas and wellness?

The future of wellness is the fusion with the medical field, and psychological and mental well-being. Health is fundamental, as we have all realized this year. Spas will increasingly be called upon to prevent disease and boost the immune system.

Thanks Alberto, and all the best!

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