This Hotel Reimagines Wellness on a Secluded Turkish Peninsula

Scorpios, the legendary Mykonos hangout, has just opened a second, more mystical location in Bodrum

Nestled atop its own forested peninsula, the hill that Scorpios Bodrum sits atop emerges from the waters of the Aegean as you descend a looping drive, from the mountains to its door. The original Mykonos location is famed for its all-night vibe, a chic corner of the legendary Greek party island – and in Bodrum, Turkey’s elite beach destination, you’re still likely to stay up till morning. But after dancing to unexpected musicians and DJs from around the world, you’re more likely to be lured to a sound bath; take part in some moon gazing in the secluded gardens; or float in your private pool in one of the hotel’s 12 bungalows. Sitting on the deck of said bungalow, grazing on a Turkish breakfast of herbs, pickles and labneh, makes you wonder when restoring one’s body and soul became just as necessary as depleting it on the dancefloor.

Scorpios is the 2015 lovechild of Thomas Heyne and Mario Hertel, who wanted to create a contemporary take on the ancient Greek agora – a gathering place meant to nourish the spiritual and artistic life of a community. While Mykonos might inspire you with music, food and company, in Bodrum, the duo have expanded the experience. With two restaurants and the ritual space, plus the fact that it’s on its own peninsula, it’s an (almost) island of calm, away from the hyper-charged pace that most of its visitors live at. “We asked ourselves, ‘What if, instead of booking celebrity DJs to host beach parties, we aim to facilitate rituals where like-minded musicians, artists and travellers from all over the world can come together?” say Hertel and Heyne. “Where everyone can feed off the energy of the island.” Thus, in August, in an exhibition entitled Evolving Perspectives, Scorpios Bodrum will explore human-machine collaborations and the convergence of technology and the natural world. Can humans use machines to better preserve nature, beyond automatically turning the air con off when you leave the room?

The Rituals Space is where this confluence of modernity and tradition is most evident. With its high ochre walls and inner gardens, the complex, masked by pines and cacti, looks like a temple. Its seclusion away from the rest of Scorpios enhances this, as you wander along a clifftop path to its minimal entrance. What’s inside does nothing to dispel the mystic atmosphere. The room that houses the sound bath has been specially designed to enhance the aural effect, as has the performance space, with its honey-combed windows across the ceiling giving a warm sound to the musicians. Activate yourself in water that’s very hot or (a personal preference) screamingly cold, get a treatment, explore psychedelic breathwork. Or just stare at the sea from yet another secluded pool. 

The nature of all things is cyclical, so after healing one’s neural pathways, there’s nothing better to do than descend to Scorpios’ steps (or alight into an electric buggy if your legs buckle from being blissed out) to the Beach House. Built atop a deck that juts out into a calm bay, it hosts Scorpios guests alongside a revolving cast of holidayers arriving in speed boats (when we were there, the best of the boats came in black or beige, unloading linen-clad Istanbul fashion types – modern). As the sun sets, you can retire back to your bungalow, slip into the garden, and sink into a stone bathtub masked by tropical plants. Ready to do it all again.

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