Spa day (from hell??!!)

imageSpa days have become something of a modern day luxury nowadays, thanks to Groupon, Wowcher and Amazon Local.  As a fairly regular Spa fan, I asked for one for Christmas and so did my Spa partner in crime Tiffany. Today we are going to try out a different venue and are looking forward to luxuriating in the headily perfumed treatment rooms that await us. I just love the aromatherapy oils that permeate the darkly lit, relaxing rooms and the comforting music that plays quietly in the background.

Having been led to the room by your allocated masseuse in the comfy towelling robe they provide, you are left in the unfamiliar surroundings to undress and arrange yourself on the towel covered bed, whilst trying to keep your dignity intact. I always feel a bit silly at this stage and somewhat vulnerable. This feeling doesn’t last long however,  for once the masseuse has knocked (they always knock first, to respect your privacy) and entered, they explain what they are going to do and then all is required is to lay back and enjoy the experience.

On this occasion though, there were no fluffy towelling robes or slippers, or even a dark room. There wasn’t even a separate room because we were asked if we minded sharing the room with just a partition between us! Luckily, we know each other quite well and stripped off to our knickers and positioned ourselves on our beds with towels covering our modesty.

The treatment itself was good and definitely value for money but if you are unaccustomed to strangers placing their aromatherapy oiled hands on your almost naked body, then this is not for you. But if you can let your inhibitions go and just relax, then it is a very enjoyable and therapeutic experience. I have had several back and shoulder massages and have felt wonderful afterwards but when I was on holiday in Mexico last year, I had the full body scrub and massage. It was the best one I have ever had and my favourite part was the foot massage, especially as I had been up till 3 in the morning dancing at a club and had very achy feet! And what really surprised me was that I have really ticklish feet and can’t normally stand anyone touching them but it was bliss.

Most Spa centres normally have at least one form of hydrotherapy facility. I love a sauna, followed by the steam room. Some have a swimming pool and jacuzzi bath. The one I have been to a couple of times before has an outside hot tub and you can watch drivers on the skid pan in the grounds of Mercedes world at Brooklands. It’s surreal sitting in a lovely warm bath in the middle of November putting the worlds to rights with your companion while it is cold on the outside and hot on the inside.

Once in Majorca on another holiday, there was a Spa in the hotel we were staying in and you could use the facilities by paying a meagre 10 euros and could stay as long as you like. It had various showers that all had different aromatherapy oils and one had mud added to it. Another has a zesty lemon spray, whilst one was called tropical rain forest, due to the strength and flow of water. But my favourite part of that Spa centre was the one for the feet. You walked on stones, whilst jets of beautiful smelling water sprayed your feet. The one in Mexico had strong jets of water coming from under your feet, whilst you sat down and also left your feet feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.

Going back to Majorca again and the hydrotherapy pool had different water jets around it. Some you could sit on which was very funny because it made your swimsuit blow up like a balloon and I couldn’t help getting the giggles! Other jets rained down on you from above, taking your breath away, whilst the last set squirted from the sides. I remember I squealed a few times, taken by surprise, much to my friends amusement. When we had finished messing about in the water, there were some nice loungers to lay and relax on? I fell asleep because it was so relaxing and that is what most Spa centres are about.

Unfortunately for us, today after our lovely massage and facials, we went downstairs to use the “facilities” and were met with a pool full of babies having a swimming class! The pool was so small that we couldn’t get in it, without joining the class and it wouldn’t have been so bad if Tiffany hadn’t left her own baby at home with her father, so she could get away for a nice relaxing break! We did use the sauna and the steam room but only stayed half an hour. There were 2 loungers which we used for 5 minutes but lunch beckoned and as it was in with the package, we thought we should go at our allotted time.

We went back to the small changing room to shower and change and all was well until the baby swimming class changed over. Soon we were surrounded by 7 babies and 7 mothers all clamouring for space in the tiny room! There was only I changing cubicle, so I dived in there when I saw the competition and was glad I did because the mayhem was added to by the next swimming lesson that had arrived with even more babies and mummies  trying to enter to get undressed!

Tiffany was not amused and when she emerged out into the reception area, they made the mistake of asking her if everything was okay. She gave them the complete low down, in no uncertain terms and they in turn, refunded our fivers! We couldn’t even dry our hair in there, despite hair driers being provided because we couldn’t get to it!

So we went for our lunch with wet, tangled hair and the experience was saved, in part, by the lovely food and glass of wine we had which went a small way to make amends. On the way out we stopped by reception to air our views, suggesting to them that maybe they should refrain from telling future customers that they could use the facilities in peace, without sharing them with half a dozen babies and their mummies – hardly relaxing and which nearly undone the good work that the girls in the treatment room had provided . I don’t think we will be going back there again in a hurry!

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5 Responses to Spa day (from hell??!!)

  1. Wanda Needes says:

    At least your treatments were good, the whole experience could have been a lot worse! All seems a bit mickey mouse….thanks for sharing as I definitely won’t be going there. xx

  2. jennypellett says:

    Spa days sound like fun. I’ve never done one although have had brilliant massage at a hotel we were staying at in Devon. Mummies and babies … We were those people once. I probably would have taken advantage of an event like that had they been around 25 years ago! But the establishment should have made it plain that there was an event going on when you booked. My friend and I boycott one of the coffee shops in Godalming because it’s wall to wall pushchairs, babies and their annoyingly loud mothers. Been there, done that, got the sick-stained t-shirt.

    • kaypickard says:

      Yes, I know what you mean Jenny about being there and doing it and I, as a grand mother am doing it again but not on that day I wasn’t meant to! We do get a bit intolerant of the noise of babies and mummies when we are outnumbered by them and just want some peace. Even if we were them twenty odd years ago!

  3. Jacqueline Routledge says:

    At least the wine and food sound good. Reminded me of why I gave up (expensive) membership of swimming pool at local hotel. Loved working with children but did not want them dive-bombing me in my free time. Very conscious of our baby when we go out and only visit places where we are all welcome. Left a local restaurant last year without ordering because of the “creche”. Have I become less tolerant? Yes, of course!

    • kaypickard says:

      I know what you mean, Jacqueline – I am not against babies , I love the ones we have. It’s just the 2 don’t go together when you want a relaxing day out! Tiff looked up the offer and we were supposed to have a towelling robe, slippers and 10% off the Products if we wanted to buy them.

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