Having raved about Zeppelin, Marketa was keen to check out their chestnut sweets. So Monday morning we headed back for coffee and cake breakfast. This time we pared it back to one chestnut crescent for the 4 of us to share along with our coffees.
Mike & I headed back to pack up and clean up while D&M headed back to Roberts to pick up their bags and the car. After a bit of a delay we reconnected at the edge of the Stare Mesto (old city) near the US embassy – the only one caged and surrounded by armed guards! We were off to spa town of Piestany for some self indulgence.
We took a drive thru the ‘high’ part of Bratislava with its gorgeous mansions and views to match overlooking the river, city, and castle. En route to Piestany we stopped in Modra where we bought a piece of handmade pottery off a local at his workshop. We were on the hunt for halusky but after 3 failed attempts at finding a restaurant (closed on Monday….), we ended up back in Modra where we found a good cheap lunch. Mike splurged with sauerkraut soup and ribs (excellent), and the rest of us had the daily soup and pork dish special – a real deal at 5.8 Euro.
Our Piestany abode was decorated in what is best described as ‘Arte Grotesque’, or possibly ‘Arte Remnant’. The previous Arab owners seemed to enjoy gaudy in every shade of red with black and gold, including a full wall mural of Dubai. But there was lots of space which functioned well.
The spas in Piestany are mostly on the island section of town. We managed to get a same day 5:15 pm appt for the 4 of us at Spa Irma. Men and women are separate. So Marketa and I headed to our change room where you undress and wrap in a sheet to head to the first ‘mirror’ pool. Calm, clear, mineral water at 39C. We soaked there along with 3 other women for about 10 minutes in the mandatory silence. Unfortunately the boys on the other side were chatting annoyingly and we were forced to scold them. Next we were moved along to the even hotter mud pool with its bottom layer of several inches of rich mineral mud. We served ourselves mud facials as well as neck and shoulders. I took turns alternating my knees out of the water to allow the ‘healing muds’ to infuse my joints. Finally we headed to the beds where you are wrapped in dry warm sheets to rest before a final cleansing shower. A great way to spend 1 hour and 15 Euros.
We followed the spa with a walk to the end of the esplanade on the island. I experienced my first encounter with a female ginko tree – quite a stink and a very messy and slippery fruit.
Derek & Marketa supplied and prepared dinner of wild mushrooms, peppers, onions, garlic, olive oil with pasta and a side of fried green tomatoes. We finished off the borcak and then some white wine from the same vineyard. Very enjoyable.
After an exhausting evening for Marketa trying to learn euchre (it is quite complex when learning from scratch!), we all slept in. Marketa headed to the local shops and picked up yogurt, cheese, bread, apples, jams and tea which we shared for breakfast before heading out for coffee along the quaint main street.
We spent the day looking for bookings at the other spas, but they were all quite booked up. Back at Spa Irma, Marketa managed to get a Thai shoulder and neck appt, and I a Thai foot massage. The boys wanted a hand treatment, which they only managed to get for 8:30 the next morning. All else failing, we all decided to go back for another round of Irma spa cycle. No complaints 🙂
We headed to Slovensky Dvor for dinner where we finally found halusky (grated potato dumplings) with Bryndza cheese and bacon. We also tried fried cheese and the potato dumpling with sauerkraut. Dessert was poppy seed dumpling and chocolate brownie with raspberry (unfortunately they were out of chestnut cake). With beers, coffees, shots, and a kefir like drink, it was a great deal at 60 Euro all in for the 4 of us.
Back for more euchre to help ingrain it into Marketa’s memory. Tomorrow morn would see an earlier rise for the boys to get their hand treatment and to fill our water jug with stinky, but supposedly curing, sulphur spa water.