BERLIN - Yes. You read that right. We believe we have found the cure to jetlag.
We stumbled into the Meridian Spa & Fitness on our first day in Berlin. It is tucked away in the Arcaden shopping center in Spandau on the 3rd floor. They offer day passes to their spa which is absolutely luxurious. There is just one catch.
In Germany, it is expected that you will abide by the rules. Germans pride themselves on being good citizens. Naturally, that includes being a law abiding citizen.
On a recent trip, we asked our European friends on what one thing defined their culture. Our Italian friend described it this way. We are an old country with many rules. Every Italian is expected to learn each every one of these rules...and then break them as quickly as you can. Our German friend retorted, “That is funny. We are a new country with few rules. However, every German thinks it is their responsibility to make up some”.
If you can accept that contingency, you will be accepted in an amazing facility with an indoor/outdoor pool, 5 sauna experiences, 1 steam room grotto, several hot tubs, and a polar bear plunge (to wake you up). Plus, a full service European spa.
To best cure your jetlag, we recommend that you take the fastest route to Spandau. If you flew in through Tegel airport, than it is a short 10 minute car ride away. Otherwise, jump on the Airport Express train and you will be there in 30 minutes.
Upon arrival, ask for the day pass, which will run €20 - €30 depending on the time of day you depart. Earlier is less expensive. Check in your clothes in their electronic lockers and enjoy paradise.
Our advice is to first enjoy a 15 minute sauna. It will relax those tired muscles from the flight. Then take the polar bear plunge.
Sure it seems crazy, but it will wake you up. Now, you can spend rest of the day enjoying the spa amenities, working out, or just enjoy their relaxation room overlooking the pool.
For parents, we have a luxury for you. They have a kindergarten which can entertain your child for 3 hours and a nominal fee of €2. Imagine; happy kids, happy life!
This being a spa, you may want to indulge in a treatment. The masseurs are highly trained in several massage techniques. Ours was amazing and it worked out those last few kinks.
It is easiest to stay in a hotel near the spa. There is an ibis Hotel next store to the mall. Spandau doesn’t offer much for the sightseer, so it will offer few distractions from the spa. After a night, you could change to a more central hotel.
Oh! And that one rule you must follow. You must be naked in some of the public areas.
For Americans, it can be feel a little inappropriate. The good news is Germans of all ages and body types show up. So, you will fit in. That is unless you try to enter the sauna with a bathing suit on, which is verboten. So, avoid the looks and just leave that aside.
When in Germany, do as the Germans do with as little on as possible.
The Meridian Spa also has locations in Hamburg, Frankfurt, and Kiel.