In Fellini's film 8 1/2 Marcello Mastroianni goes to an Italian spa ostensibly to relax and escape from the stresses of work and women. However, it quickly becomes clear that both his work and his women aren't so easily abandoned, and the spa becomes a hotbed of chic Italian-style activity. There is a great scene towards the beginning of the film where the camera moves about the spa capturing the various activities of the caricaturish people who have come to take respite in the therapeutic springs as "Ride of the Valkyries" plays triumphantly in the background. The camera captures a slow-moving line of elderly Italians waiting patiently with cups in hand to receive a drink from the famed waters. This is not your everyday Pellegrino, since this water that they wait for holds the promise of youth, health, and vitality. If you aren't able to go to a Roman spa this summer, then I highly recommend that you rent this film instead, and if you want to take the experience one step further make sure to have a nice bottle of sparkling Galvanina on hand to sip while you watch.* You will almost feel as though you are at the spa. Now, if you really want an escapist Italian spa experience take a bath with a bar of Nesti Dante Thermal Water Soap and play some Wagner in the background. Ciao Amore!
pick up some Galvanina in the Gristedes on 9th Avenue between 23rd and 24th Street. FYI they have an excellent selection of mineral water.
photo credit soap: http://www.beautyhabit.com
photo credit water: http://www.finewaters.com