Balvanyos, Romania



Application summary:

We hereby would like to confirm our application for ESPA Innovation Awards 2022, in the INNOVATIVE SPA DESTINATION category in the name of Balvanyos Region (Romania) and Balvanyos Resort, as the most important and unique Spa destination in the area.  Balvanyos Region situated at the feet of the Carpathian mountains, is the most southern area of the Eastern-Carpathians, where post-volcanic phenomena have appeared. These cold post-volcanic manifestations (mofettas, solfataras and mineral waters) have a great geological, touristic and therapeutic value. Among the post-volcanic manifestations, the Smelly Cave or Grotto is known as the biggest natural mofetta in Europe, with a length of 14m. This emanates approx. 2,000 m³ of carbon dioxide each day.

The wide variety of natural mineral waters in the area are also exploited through the presence of numerous traditional baths, small ecological pools with different healing properties, arranged within the forests nearby Balvanyos Resort.

In this wonderful environment is located Balvanyos Resort containing the 4 star hotel – Grand Hotel Balvanyos, Grand Santerra Spa, Balvanyos Adventure Park, and 3 restaurants each with different specialty.

1. Project Description:

Nestled amongst natural springs and secular fir trees, the hotel’s Grand Santerra Spa stretches on over 2,000 square meter and features 7 swimming pools, 3 saunas, a steam bath, tropical rain shower, a salt room with Transylvanian salt, and a modern fitness room with indoor and outdoor area. In line with the current evolution of the Spa concept, but with the desire to offer something new and authentic, we offer a collection of facilities which not only achieve the physical wellbeing but also the mental and sensory level, too. Natural, noble materials as wood and stone, have been used for the interior and exterior perfectly dimensioned spaces, to create an environment of relaxation and to bring you in perfect harmony with the evergreen surroundings. We have 8 therapeutically rooms designed with local handcrafted materials to provide an authentic feeling for guests.  The rich natural resources of the surrounding areas have truly inspired us to create spa rituals incorporating the natural water supply and land with the purpose of prevention and healing.

2. Originality:

The Grand Santerra Spa is a unique property due to the natural resources found in the surrounding area. Mofetta’s are one of nature’s most fascinating wonders. Being situated in a volcanic area, the naturally occurring gas released from the ground is strong, therefore a mofetta can be found within the Spa that is used to treat a wide range of health problems, especially those related to cardiovascular system. Providing the opportunity for guests to get a massage therapy outdoors, in one of the most oxygenated areas in Romania supplies an increase in the serotonin level. Additionally, short excursions are organized to springs, baths and natural sulphureous  mofettas that allows guests to spend more time outdoors, encouraging them to explore the natural resources that this beautiful and rich area provides. 

The Grand Santerra Spa is integrating all of the elements of the nature, a combination of wood and stone, plants, water and fire all together, create an environment of serenity and harmony.

As society is placing more importance on maintaining and enhancing their health and wellbeing, Grand Santerra Spa incorporated numerous natural resources into the facility.  Our salt room’s wall is built with salt from the region’s biggest salt mine, from Praid.  We use the salt for our spa treatments, body scrub and different massage therapy as well. Our signature massage, Mountain King consists of medical aromatic plants from the local area that are placed in small bags and heated (herbal balls) and essential oils are used to intensify the experience. All the massages and treatments are tailored to the needs and preferences of the guests. The “rasul” ritual uses blue clay from Transylvania which is popular amongst guests as it has a detoxifying result.  Our pools are with mineral water from different springs found in the area. The wood heated sauna is ideal for aromatherapy filled with fresh pine brunches from the nearby forest.

3. Impact and benefits

The Grand Santerra Spa is the biggest attractiveness of the Balvanyos Resort and Balvanyos Region. We have 80 000  tourists  annually from Romania, and Europe as well. 40% of the tourists visiting the county are Balvanyos Resort’s  guests. We consider that is a huge impact for the region attractiveness.

The variety of facilities that integrate natural resources such as; indoor and outdoor pools with spring water, kneipp therapy, salt room, soft and hot saunas with aromatherapy, steam room, mofettas, gym facilities indoor and outdoor, running tracks, multifunctional sport field, massages and rituals using local resources makes unique.  Having all these facilities and activities in one place, Grand Santerra Spa becomes a destination for those who want to FEEL, PAUSE and ENJOY. For those who focus on their prevention and wellbeing, it is a great place to start the journey by placing emphasis on the spa and wellness side that incorporates natural resources.

4. Sustainability

The hotel’s design is made in spirit of environmental protection, and sustainability. We are using local materials to minimize our footprint. The stone, the wood and the iron used in constructions is from the region. We restore the old wood to reuse in decorations in our indoor and outdoor spaces. We are constantly improving the selective collection of the waste.

We use eco-friendly packaging materials in our restaurants, and we reduce single-use tools in the whole Resort.

Switching up the use of plastic to paper or glass during massage therapies and preparations. By encouraging guests to take part in outdoor massages or use the outdoor fitness facilities, together with customers we are creating an environmentally friendly spa concept. Additionally, the Spa Bar uses only paper straws and cups to support this concept.


Imperial Hotel Management SRL
Piata Gabor Aron nr 4, Targu Secuiesc, Covasna County, 525400, Romania