Everybody loves a good escape from the hustle and bustle, a chance to unwind, and indulge in a world of relaxation. And what better way to do that than by diving into the timeless tradition of the hammam right here in Malaga, Spain?
Hammams, also known as Turkish baths or Arab baths, offer not just an escape from the daily grind but a journey into a world of ancient wellness practices. As we immerse ourselves in the soothing waters and enveloping warmth, the stress of modern life melts away, revealing a sense of serenity that transcends time.
In this blog post, we’re going to explore the magic of hammams: what they are, their incredible benefits for body and soul, and where you can find the best hammam experiences in the heart of Malaga.
Whether you’re a seasoned traveler seeking the ultimate relaxation or a curious soul eager to discover a new world of wellness, this guide will unveil the secrets of hammams and introduce you to the finest places to experience them in Malaga.
So, slip into your comfiest robe, leave your cares behind, and join us on a journey of rejuvenation and tranquility as we delve into the world of Malaga’s best hammams. Get ready to unwind, Malaga-style!
- Not many hotels in Malaga have a hammam, but one that does is the Gran Hotel Miramar.
- Hammam Al Ándalus Baños Árabes and El Hammam Open Space & SPA are the two places in Malaga where you can enjoy the ultimate hammam experience.
- While Arab baths often conjure up images of unabashed nudity, as is the case in places like Morocco, you must wear a swimsuit in the hammams of Malaga.
What is a Hammam ?
The concept of the hammam, or public bath, can be traced back to the Roman Empire, where communal bathing was a cherished ritual.
However, it was during the Islamic Golden Age, between the 8th and 15th centuries, that the hammam truly blossomed. Islamic hygiene practices emphasized cleanliness, and the hammam became a central part of daily life, offering both physical and spiritual purification.
These hammams were not just places for cleansing the body but also for socializing and relaxation. They featured various temperature chambers, similar to the Roman thermae, where visitors could move from hot to cold baths, followed by massages and exfoliation.
What Can You Do in the Arab Baths?
In a Hammam, you can immerse yourself in a world of relaxation and rejuvenation. Picture this: a tranquil oasis where you shed your worries along with your clothes and pamper yourself.
Now, let’s dive into the heart of the matter—the hammam ritual itself. It’s a holistic experience that encompasses several stages:
- The Baths: Your journey begins in the warm, steamy room. The heat opens your pores, eases muscle tension, and prepares you for the next steps. The transition from hot to cold baths invigorates your body, promoting circulation.
- The Exfoliation : Ever heard of the Kessa glove? It’s an exfoliating wonder! As you recline on a warm marble slab, a skilled attendant gently scrubs your skin with this glove, removing dead cells and leaving your skin baby soft. It’s like hitting the reset button for your skin.
- The Massage: Ah, the pièce de résistance! After the bath and exfoliation, indulge in a rejuvenating massage. Skilled therapists work their magic, relieving stress, easing tension, and leaving you in a state of blissful relaxation.
Health Benefits : More Than Just Pampering
Now, why should you consider a hammam experience? Well, besides the sheer indulgence, hammams offer a range of health benefits:
- Improved Circulation: The hot and cold baths stimulate blood flow, benefiting your cardiovascular system
- Skin Rejuvenation: The Kessa glove removes impurities, and the massage promotes healthy skin.
- Stress Reduction: The entire experience is a form of stress relief, melting away tension and promoting mental well-being.
- Respiratory Benefits: The steam can help ease respiratory issues, making it great for those with allergies or asthma.
So, there you have it—a hammam isn’t just a place to get clean; it’s a sanctuary of history, relaxation, and health benefits. If you find yourself in Andalusia, don’t miss the chance to immerse yourself in this centuries-old tradition.
What are the Options for a Hammam in Málaga ?
Hammam Al Ándalus Baños Árabes
Hammam Al Ándalus, situated in the heart of Malaga, showcases the city’s rich heritage through its beautiful architecture, inspired by Moorish design. Inside, the building surprises with its stunning tiles and ceilings, a stark contrast to its unassuming exterior.
Once inside, guests are offered a choice of four scented oils for their massages, which are conducted in a spacious room alongside others. The hammam experience includes :
- 4 temperature-controlled pools (hot, warm, cold and very cold)
- Steam room
- Oil massage (15 or 30 minutes)
Address: Pl. de los Mártires Ciriaco y Paula, 5, 29008 Málaga, Spain (Google Maps)
El Hammam Open Space & SPA
For those looking for an authentic and peaceful experience, El Hammam Open Space & SPA in Malaga is a real treasure. It has a genuine and charming atmosphere that takes you back in time.
Here, you can enjoy a true hammam experience that respects the local Andalusian traditions:
- Turkish bath session (2 hours)
- Exfoliating massage using a kessa glove (30 minutes)
- Oil massage (30 minutes)
The highlight is the relaxing tea session at the end, where you can sip your tea while admiring the beautiful city view, including the cathedral. Another great feature is that you’re welcome to stay as long as you like, ensuring you have all the time you need for a calming and enjoyable visit.
Address: C/ Tomás de Cózar, 13, 29008 Málaga, Spain (Google Maps)
What are the schedule of the hammam in Málaga ?
Both hammams are open from late morning until late evening.
- Hammam Al Ándalus is open every day from 9:30 AM to 11:30 PM.
- El Hammam Open Space & SPA is closed on Mondays but is open from 11 AM to 10 PM on the other days of the week.
What is the minimum age to go to the hammams in Málaga ?
If you’re thinking about checking out El Hammam Open Space & SPA, here’s the scoop: The minimal age for the hammam experience here is 17 years old.
On the other hand, even young adventurers as little as 5 years old can join in the relaxation and cultural fun at Hammam Al Ándalus Baños Árabes in Malaga.
Also, note that both hammam experience in Malaga are mixed.
Both institutions boast a quiet atmosphere perfect to unwind right in the heart of Malaga.
What Should You Bring to a Hammam?
Getting prepped for your hammam adventure? Don’t forget to pack the essentials for an ultra-comfortable experience!
- Footwear: While the hammam is an experience where you go barefoot, you might want flip-flops for the changing rooms.
- Swimsuit: Underwears are not allowed in the thermal baths (and going naked is not an option), so don’t forget to bring your swimsuit.
- Change of Clothes: Make sure to bring along clean and dry clothing, including underwear, for after your time in the hammam.
- Hair Tie for longer hair: If you have long hair, a hair tie or clip is handy to keep your hair out of the way during your visit.
- Plastic Bag for Wet Items: Don’t forget to bring a waterproof bag for your wet things. It’s quite annoying when all your stuff gets wet after a great day at the spa.
- Cash: While the hammams accept credit cards, it’s a good idea to have some 1 euro coins for the lockers.
What hotels in Málaga have hammams ?
If you’re looking for a hotel in Málaga that offers a hammam experience, your choices are quite limited. Currently, the Gran Hotel Miramar is the only option in the city.
This beachfront hotel is known for its luxurious rooms and a spa that includes a traditional hammam for relaxation.
- Hotel guests can access the water circuit, including the Arab baths, for 30 €.
- For non-guests, the cost is 40 €.
If you want the full hammam experience at the Gran Hotel Miramar, consider the « Oasis of the Orient Ritual, » priced at 285 € and lasting 120 minutes. This beauty treatment takes inspiration from the Arab traditions and includes a Turkish bath, a body exfoliation with Moroccan black soap, and a Dead Sea mud body wrap. The goal is to deeply cleanse your body and finish with a relaxing massage for refreshed and glowing skin.
Keep in mind that the hammam experience at the Gran Hotel Miramar is influenced by Moorish rituals but may not follow them as strictly as the two hammams mentioned earlier.
In summary, Malaga’s hammams offer a relaxing escape during your trip to the Costa del Sol. These traditional Andalusian baths have many health benefits and are also great for the spirit.
You can find hammams at three places in Malaga: Hammam Al Ándalus Baños Árabes, El Hammam Open Space & SPA, and the Gran Hotel Miramar.