Courtesy of Starkenberger Bier

When a pint just won't do.

July 17, 2017

People who love beer are typically the same people who know how to have a good time, unwind and relax with a cold one. Perhaps it makes sense, then, that all over the world, there are places that combine the pleasures of beer with the ultimate way to relax in a way that might surprise you: Behold, the beer spa.

On any regular occasion, being covered in beer doesn’t exactly sound appealing (sticky and a lingering smell of yeast come to mind as the two immediate side effects), but especially in Europe, a bath of beer is billed as detoxifying, and supposedly improves blood circulation and cleanses the pores. The validity of those claims aside, many beer spas also allow visitors to enjoy a personal beer tap to drink from while you soak—one undeniable benefit of the experience.

If you’re one of those people—and lets hope you are—that loves a bath and loves beer even more, here are five places that will let you soak in a tub full of beer, and where to find them.

Bjorbodin Spa

The Bjorbodin Spa in Iceland, newly opened this June, is the latest business to offer travelers the chance to rest their weary bones in a tub filled with a mix of water and beer, with extra hops and yeast added to the mix. The owners say that their beer is “revitalizing” for the skin and hair. A beer tap next to each tub lets you refill your glass as you soak.

Strakenburger Brewery Castle

At this Austrian castle turned brewery, visitors can bath in converted fermentation tanks. The brewery mixes warm water with 300 liters of beer, and the spa recommends that bathers skip the shower afterward to soak in the full effect of the hops.

Bernard Beer Spa

The biggest selling point of this spa in Prague? Visitors who soak in the beer baths are also welcome to unlimited beer during their treatment. Bernard is also home to a salt cave, where spa-goers can undergo halotherapy. The salt in the walls is supposed to be an effective treatment for respiratory problems.

BrewDog beer hotel

Back in March, the Ohio-based brewery BrewDog got the go-ahead to build their beer-themed hotel, DogHouse. Slated to open in September 2018, the DogHouse should draw beer-enthusiast to their doors: There’s IPA on draft in every room and beer fridges in the showers so you can enjoy one of life’s most satisfying combinations, a cold beer under a hot shower. But it’s in the hotel’s luxury suit where you’ll find the most ridiculous, least practical, yet completely genius beer-centric amenity: A hotub filled with their Punk IPA. Sure, it might seem like an over-the-top indulgence, but if Europe’s beer spa advocates are to be believed, it might just be good for you, too.

Bonus: Your own home

Yes, you can enjoy a beer bath at home—and not just by pouring cans of Budweiser into your tub. A Japanese company created food-themed bathing powders, and one of them is beer-flavored. Fill your bathtub up with hot water, add the powder, and like magic, your bathwater will taste and smell like a delicious (albeit warm) beer, although its probably best to not taste-test your own bath water. Other flavors of the powder include cheesy pizza, potstickers, and edamame. They’re available for order here.