Have you ever been to Hévíz? No? Haven’t even heard of it? It’s timet o visit! Hévíz, this tiny town north-west of lake Balaton can in fact boast with the largest natural thermal water. The blackish, steaming huge water surface with water lilies has an impressive look, and besides its healing effects are countless.
A 38 metres deep „spa”
The source of the 4.4 ha water surface lake, rich in sulphur, and minerals, can be found 38 metres deep in the cave, which due to its high well capacity completely changes in every 72 hours. The water of Lake Hévíz contains an equal proportion of dissolved and gaseous substances, thus unifying the favourable characteristics of thermal waters rich in carbonic acid, sulphur, calcium, magnesium, hydrogen carbonate. The water temperature may reach 23-25 °C in winter and 33-36 °C in summer. The water of the lake is in a constant move, thus leaving a special massaging effect on the human skin. In winter it provides a spectacular and unique experience when the condensed steam forms a steam cap on the top of the lake surface. This “cap” prevents water from cooling down, and at the same time a natural inhalatorium is formed. Hydrogen sulphide is released into the air, which have medical effects on the exhausted vocal cords when inhaled.
A new 4 star gastro and spa hotel
Last week the 10 year old Accent Hotel chain opened its newest hotel in Hévíz, near the lake, Bonvital Wellness & Gastro Hotel with the intention to make it the leading hotel of Hévíz. The 90 bedroom hotel is not the biggest oe in town, therefore it is ideal for couples seeking some intimacy, but besides its facilities can welcome meetings and smaller events. The wellness section of the hotel offers an outstanding selection of treatments. The hotel has its own salt cave, which is effective in preventing respiratory diseases, and they have a unique underwater bike for physiotherapy.
Brix Bistro – local ingredients and superb local wines
The hotel’s restaurant offers modern cuisine based on ingredients from neighbouring producers. The bistro has a wide selection of coctails and café specialities, and their wine list is also promising. Hévíz is situated in Zala wine region, which is not the most famous in Hungary, but some ambitious and quality wineries make stunning wines, like Bussay winery. László Bussay was a general practitioner who used to receive wine from the clients as a gift, however the wines were undrinkable, so he decided to make wine himself. His white wines made his small village wellknown (Csörnyeföld). After his death his family continues, their Szürkebarát is worth trying from the wine list of Brix.
Some more wine tips from Brix Bistro
The wine list contains international stars like some Champagnes, wines from Tuscany, Bordeaux, Burgundy, Priorat, Port, but the main emphasis is on Hungary, and within that on Balaton greater wine region.
For bubble lovers
- Kreinbacher méthode traditionelle sparkling wines are a must. They are from Somló, which is not far from Hévíz. The sparkling wines were made under the guidance of Christian Forget from Champagne, and all are made of the local Furmint
- Etyeki Kúria Pláne is an aerated sparkling wine, thus it has a more moderate price, but spotless and enjoyable as well.
For white geeks
- Kreinbacher again is a good choice if you want something local, especially because the white wine offered on the wine list is made of Juhfark, Somlós native grape. The wine can be enjoyed fresh, but has a capacity of aging, too.
- Gilvesy is a winemaker worth keeping in mind! It is a relatively new winery on Szent György hill, Badacsony wine region (part of Balaton greater wine region), and his Bohém white blend is a fabulous wine.
For red fans
- Eszterbauer Tanyamacska is from Szekszárd, which is again not far from Hévíz, and the wine is a fruity, yet complex barrel aged Kékfrankos.
- Liszkay Cabernet Franc is a good choice, if you want some full bodied, yet elegant Liszkay Estate is a spectacular “chateau”, if you stay in Hévíz, make a day trip to visit this marvelous estate!