Viva Mayr – real spas don’t serve cocktails

Jane Alexander

448722491Are spas going soft? Lately the word ‘spa’ has come to mean little more than a holiday at a smart hotel with a few massages and facials thrown in. You only need to see pictures of Kate Moss on ‘detox’ at Chiva Som, cigarette in one hand, cocktail in the other, to figure out that most spa trips are hedonistic rather than truly healthy. I’m not knocking the sybaritic spa – heaven only knows we all want a bit of pampering now and again. But let’s be brutally honest – if you really want to kickstart a new health regime you’re not going to do it on gourmet cuisine and some hybrid uber-massage with hot rocks and flowers. Sorry, but you need something a bit more hardcore. That’s where Viva-Mayr comes in.

Mayr Therapy has been around since the 1950s – the brainchild of Austrian physician Dr Franz Xaver Mayr…

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Marie Kondo Will Change Your Life

As a physical presence, Marie Kondo has more in common with a snowflake than with the flesh-and-blood humans around her. She speaks softly, wears white, and doesn’t so much make an entrance as drift to a halt on the stormy day when we meet. Most celebrities of her magnitude have a force field. Kondo, standing about five feet tall in shiny patent-leather heels, has none—and yet she’s so famous in Japan that she can no more ride the Tokyo subway than Beyoncé could.

At 30 years old, Kondo has written four best-selling books about the art of tidying, including The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, her first book translated into English and a runaway best seller. Fans of her decluttering techniques call themselves Konverts and use the author’s name as a verb: “Good day today,” wrote one in a parenting forum. “Kondoed fridge before shopping delivery.” From another: “It seems mundane but I’ve Kondo’d some deodorant that I didn’t like the smell of.” Konverts live for the high of domestic purging. They call it Kondomania.

The author’s formal study of neatness began at age 5, when feng shui principles became trendy in Tokyo. “My mother was applying the method, but to my eye, the house was not tidy enough to have the feng shui effect,” Kondo said, sipping Fiji water through a straw at lunch. She began helping her mother with the housework. “Well, not so much helped, as I was the one who tidied,” Kondo clarified. “I actually executed all the tidying up.”

To read more:
Marie Kondo Will Change Your Life


I’d like to subtitle this article “How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Herbal Tea,” but that statement simply isn’t true. I don’t love herbal tea. I love coffee.

In the spirit of journalism (and because my cruel bosses forced me to), I quit coffee for a week. And since I’m a glutton for punishment, I went without caffeine altogether. It wasn’t easy.

To read the full article:

My Fave Cafe in Vienna: Balthasar

From Coffee With Love

Balthasar Espresso Balthasar Espresso

It seems that all good things come to those who wait and sometimes they kind of creep up on you. So, one fine sunny day in Vienna, after a fine lunch, I was rushing again and what did I notice, a La Marzocco Strada to my right in a shop – of course I stopped, walked in, saw a friendly guy behind the brew bar and state of the art espresso machine and said “wow! is this a new place…. you’ve got a La Marzocco Strada machine… erm… I’ll be back” And sure I was in 10 minutes and ever since then, several times, taking colleagues, the wife, the daughter, the son and more.

Balthasar Entry

It also helps that Balthasar, is about 15 minutes walk from where I live and about 10 minutes on the underground (in Vienna it’s called the u-bahn) from where I work, so very…

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