31 Dec Hygge: Comfort & Warmth All Winter Long
Hygge is the Nordic version of cozy, but you don’t have to travel all the way to Scandinavia to find it. If you are longing for the kind of atmosphere that warms you to your inner core, plan a visit to Iron Mountain Hot Springs this winter where comfort and warmth are our specialties.
According to Meik Wiking, CEO of the Happiness Research Institute in Copenhagen and author of the Little Book of Hygge, this strange Danish word pronounced “hooga,” is hard to define, but easy to feel. It’s been called everything from “coziness for the soul” to “the absence of annoyance.” According to Wiking’s book it is: about being with people we love; a feeling that we are sheltered from the world; it is comforting sounds, smells and tastes. By those measures, we would suggest it doesn’t get any more hygge than taking a good, long soak in the geothermal pools at Iron Mountain Hot Springs.
The Feel of Hygge
Iron Mountain Hot Springs’ 16 soaking pools feel most “hyggelige” on cold winter days. If it’s snowing—all the better! Despite plummeting mercury and snowstorms, the temperatures of the soaking pools which range from 98° to 108° are consistently blissful and always welcoming. While the walkways that meander through the property are heated, you’ll still have to briefly brave the elements as you move from the locker rooms to the soaking pools which makes getting in the warm water feel all the more delicious and hyggelige!
The Taste of Hygge
An equally important element of the Danish cozy life is eating. While hot drinks are most often associated with that snuggly feeling, when soaking in a hot spring pool, cold drinks have the same life-is-good quality. The Sopris Café and Sand Bar Snack Bar both offer craft beer, wine and cocktails, as well as iced teas and non-alcoholic drinks, all of which can be a perfect counterpoint to your hot springs soak. For something sweet and delicious to nosh on, local bakery Sunshine and Moons delivers freshly baked goodies daily, all made from scratch in Glenwood Springs.
The Sound of Hygge
While the sound of a crackling fire is the first thing that comes to mind, Wiking says there are many other hyggelige sounds that fit the bill. Some to look forward to while soaking include nature sounds like the soft rustling flow of the Roaring Fork River as it travels its course westward. You might find the happy sounds of children playing in the family pool soothing while you recline peacefully in the Quiet Zone soaking pools. Many guests particularly enjoy the gentle spa music that helps create a stress-free vibe.
The Sights of Hygge
Whether it is candlelight, early morning rays of sunshine or a pastel-hued sunset, hygge is very much about beautiful light—especially when natural and warm. Visually, hygge is also associated with the outdoors and natural settings. Iron Mountain Hot Springs is an ideal perch from which to enjoy both: views of storm clouds circling Mt. Sopris to the south, eagles hunting for fish in the twilight, or watching the sun sink behind the mountains at the end of the day. The organically-shaped pools, natural hot spring water and outdoor setting close to the river create a casual, cozy atmosphere where it’s easy to appreciate the goodness of life.
The Danes are among the happiest people on earth; they actively seek out opportunities to feel comfort and warmth by surrounding themselves with people they love, spending time in nature and appreciating life’s little details. This winter, give the Danish concept of hygge a try at Iron Mountain Hot Springs.