Iceland is not normally considered to be a luxury travel destination, at least it didn’t used to be. Over the last few years though, the incredible level of tourism growth has also resulted in a number of luxury travel options popping up throughout the country. Nicer hotels, amazing experiences and extra luxury options are now all available to travelers like me who like to be pampered a little. One of those enhancements can be found at the country’s most popular attraction, the Blue Lagoon.
Blue Lagoon Luxury Experience
My thoughts about the Blue Lagoon have been an evolution, and I’ve been open and honest about that. The first time I visited I think I was a little overwhelmed and wasn’t open minded to the experience itself. Instead I became bogged down in things that didn’t matter and started to pout. On my second and third visits though I set myself up for success by booking the amazing Blue Lagoon luxury package. That simple act of indulgence dramatically changed the experience for me, transforming it into a stop I now look forward to whenever I visit Iceland.
Groups can at times literally arrive by the busload, and the Blue Lagoon is ready for them. Most of those people though enter choosing just the basic package, which only includes entrance to the famous Blue Lagoon itself. As I was researching though, I soon discovered a whole host of options, from that basic package to options that guarantee a much more civilized and relaxing visit. The luxury package, which has to be booked in advance and is the one I now swear by includes many perks:
- Entrance to Blue Lagoon for two
- Entrance to the Exclusive Lounge
- Use of bathrobe, towel and slippers
- Complimentary drink
- Algae Mask
- Reserved table and pre-drink at LAVA Restaurant
- Spa Journey Product Set
The one perk that meant the most to me though was the private dressing area.
Why It’s a Fantastic Option
Most visitors to the Blue Lagoon file into one of several group locker rooms, shoulder to shoulder as they put on swim trunks and lock up their valuables. It can be busy and hectic at times and is certainly anything but private and relaxing. The luxury package maintains privacy in a few ways. First, the experience is limited to just 6 groups of two – no more than 12 people will ever be in the Exclusive Lounge area, and that’s on a busy day. The lounge area includes 1 private dressing room/shower facility for each group of two, which are locked and secured using individually keyed wristbands. The rooms are in what the folks at the Blue Lagoon call the Exclusive Lounge, which is a private lounge area adjacent to the main Blue Lagoon. Inside is a roaring fire, plenty of places to lounge about, snacks and drinks and a couple of different private entrances to the Lagoon itself. In the middle of a chilly winter, this meant I didn’t have to run from the locker room in my trunks into the freezing air before entering the water. Instead, I slowly acclimated using the private entrance, a James Bond-like secret door that leads directly into the pool.
The exclusive lounge experience is restricted to just three hours, so showing up on time if not early is best in order to maximize your time there. At first I thought that was a ridiculously long length of time, but believe me it absolutely flew by. Led by the lounge concierge we were indoctrinated into all things Blue Lagoon luxury, given our spa amenity kit and left to relax on our own. In my opinion one of the hallmarks of a great luxury experience is the service, and having a dedicated staff member attuned to our every need elevated the experience into something wonderful. If you’re just arriving into country after a flight, it’s a fantastic way to recharge. There’s nothing quite like standing there in the Blue Lagoon, watching the mist rise off of the oddly colored water. It’s peaceful and since it was still early, it also wasn’t that busy. The private dressing room was a wonderful perk – it was nice to have that personal space. I’m a private person and I especially hate public restrooms and locker rooms and will usually go out of my way to avoid both. To have a bathroom and changing area all to myself was pure heaven, and instead of stressing out about lockers down in the main changing areas, I was able to relax and decompress, which is what the Blue Lagoon luxury experience is all about after all.
New Luxury Hotel
If you’re looking for even more luxury at the Blue Lagoon, then be sure to check out their brand new and hotly anticipated hotel, The Retreat. Tucked away in its own private inlet away from other tourists, the Retreat features 62 different suites each with different perks and personalities, from incredible panoramic views to private and direct access to that curative water millions travel from around the world to experience. This isn’t only the newest hotel in the country, it’s the pinnacle of luxury in Iceland and you better believe a stay is on my must-do list the next time I visit.
Great Bookend to a Trip
My second and third experiences at the Blue Lagoon were so much more positive than my first, and it’s entirely because of the luxury package I selected. The individual dressing room, private access to the lagoon itself and the extra perks all made for not just a nice stop, but a total experience. It was one of the highlights of my time in the country and is something I know I’ll do again. It’s also just a smart use of time. Located just 15-minutes from the airport, it’s easy to reach making it the ideal activity to bookend your time in Iceland, whether it’s at the start or end of your trip.