Detox and unwind at the Mayr clinic

Detox and unwind at the Mayr clinic

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When it comes to holidays, exotica isn’t everything. Sometimes when you are tired and run down from work and your skin feels all puffy or tight, you just want what you know. For me, that’s the Mayr clinic – or the Gesundheitszentrum Golfhotel, as it is officially called – which perches on a hill above Austria’s smartest resort, the Worthersee lake.

The Mayr clinic is one of the best-known Kurhauses in Austria

Clinics the Teutons like to visit to lose weight, detox and de-stress, under strict medical supervision.

There’s a ‘first day of term’ feel as you arrive – first-timers are greeted with a hollow laugh, but nobody quite dares tell them what the cure is about. Suffice to say that for the next week or fortnight or so (there is no point in going for less than a week) we will be reminded daily of the origin of the phrase ‘to go through you like a dose of salts’. That morning glass of Epsom salts will also be one of the few things we get to consume all day. Saunas are also key, as is kneip-ing – alternatively dipping yourself in hot and cold water to aid circulation – and having your abdomen massaged by the doctor each day.

There’s golf too, of course, if that’s what you like.

Breakfast was a sort of porridge. Lunch, a light plate of grilled or stewed vegetables – moving onto fish in my second week.

Supper, er… well, that’s the catch. There is no supper. The two Mayr rules are: a) chew everything you eat into a pulp and b) don’t eat in the evening unless you have to. The first day I was starving and cross, but by day three I’d got used to it again. Besides, I am so vain, that I was buoyed up by the enormous amount of weight.

I knew I’d lose and – as long as I kept chewing and didn’t eat too much in the evening – keep off when I went back to my normal life. After ten days I finally dragged myself away, ten pounds lighter, and a little poorer as well. But I was wonderfully rested and, as a bonus, I took the three-hour train ride to Venice for lunch, before flying out that evening.

To book in at the Mayr, contact 360 Travel on Or you can go to the Mayr’s website,; email: [email protected]. Prices – including accommodation, medical treatment and food – vary from patient to patient, but tend to work out at about $1500 a week. Ryanair flies three times a week to Klagenfurt Airport, which is 20 minutes away.

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