Monday evenings are usually reserved for dance classes or relaxing at home. But a few weeks ago I spent a Monday evening at the Mondrian hotel spa and was utterly enamoured with this underground haven.
A few years ago I visited the Como Hotel in Bangkok, a serene oasis in the centre of the chaotic and hot city. The Metropolitan Como Hotel in London has a similar feel, laid back luxury with a hint of Asian influence. The spa is hidden on the second floor, a discreet but luxurious little retreat, far removed from the business focused Park Lane below.
I was greeted by several members of staff who showed me around the small spa. After a cup of zingy homemade ginger tea, I changed into a giant fluffy bathrobe and enjoyed a ten minute session in the steam room. Feeling cleansed and refreshed, I realised it was time for my treatment, the signature Como Shambhala massage with Yuki.
Tucked up and cosy in the massage bed, I felt relaxed for the first time in days and ready for the pampering session. This massage uses long hand strokes to give the body balance and harmony. I had a choice of aromatic oil scents and chose the Calm variety, a mix of lavender and geranium. Despite her shy demeanour, Yuki had great strength and undeniable ability. She seemed to instantly work out the maze of knots in my back and used miraculous movements to ease them away. Her expertise in Shiatsu massage showed in the immaculate finger pressure techniques that she used on my problematic areas. It was an hour of total heaven, I didn’t want to leave.
Revitalised and relaxed, I changed and ordered a delicious fresh juice, a tropical mix of mango, coconut water, papaya, orange and lime. A sweet and vibrant pick-me-up before returning to the mayhem of London.
The Como Shambhala spa is a small venue offering treatments that make a big difference to how you feel. I cannot wait to return to try out one of the other innovative massages.
More information and book a treatment here.
The Rosewood is, without a doubt, one of London’s most beautiful hotels. I have seen the rooms and bars many times before, but last week was my first experience of the luxurious spa.
One level below ground, the Rosewood Sense Spa has a warm exotic feel, thanks to the dimmed lighting and bamboo walls. The staff are softly spoken and when you arrive they gently escort you into the circular relaxation room for a few moments of calm before your treatment. The spa is intimate and bespoke, and when I visited was full of small groups of friends receiving some weekend pampering.
Within minutes I felt removed from busy London life, and completely revelled in the indulgent facilities. Before an individual treatment, guests are invited to make use of the dry heat saunas and amethyst crystal steam rooms, particularly good to loosen the muscles and pores before a massage or facial. I lay in the glittering gold leaf adorned relaxation lounge and enjoyed a glass of citrus infused water before being taken to one of the seven private treatment rooms.
Sense Spa offers a range of treatments collaborating with renowned organic brands from all over the world. The exclusive Sodashi and Face Place experiences are particularly popular. Feeling tense and stressed after a chaotic few months, I was booked in for a 60 minute Deep Tissue massage. I slipped into the silkiest sheets on the massage bed and as she worked on my back and neck I could feel my breathing slow. Deep Tissue is a strong pressure massage, effectively soothing aches and knots, rather than solely relaxing the body. My therapist worked hard on my shoulders and lower back, and using innovative techniques managed to loosen areas of tightness. She seemed to instinctively know when to apply more or less pressure and left my body feeling balanced and my skin feeling softened.
After the treatment I returned to the relaxation lounge to enjoy a warming cup of herbal tea and reflect on my blissful massage. The Sense Spa is a lovely way to experience this iconic hotel, and was the perfect time out during my busy weekend.
More information and book a treatment at Sense Spa here.