There is something ridiculously indulgent about a spa day isn’t there? But I’d like to challenge this idea that we should only do it for a special occasion. Why should we limit the huge benefits of a spa day to a hen do, or a birthday treat? OK, so a spa day isn’t the cheapest pick-me-up, but if it helps to ward off burn-out and boosts productivity in the long run then surely it’s money well spent?!
I was invited along to Beyond Escapes in Devon to try out their BE Indulged afternoon spa package. At £75 per person it might seem like a lot to spend for a bit of self-care, but when you see the cost includes a treatment, a glass of fizz, an afternoon tea, full use of the thermal spa and £10 to spend on facial and body products, I’d say that’s a pretty good deal.
Nestled in the South Devon countryside between Paignton and Totnes, Beyond Escapes is a fairly new resort and spa (it opened in February earlier this year), set against stunning landscape and views down to the sea. With a range of accommodation including lodges complete with hot tubs and mansion apartment suites, it would make a brilliant mini-break getaway. Or, as in our case, you can just use the spa for an intense few hours’ relaxation.
I’ve found the change in season harder to adjust to this year and was keen to see if a few hours in a spa could balance out the draining effects of darker days and colder weather (and rain – so much rain!) that I’ve been feeling recently. The answer? Yes! Within half an hour of being in the spa, I felt like a new woman. It was like magic. Which made me wonder, why don’t I do it more?
I haven’t been to a spa since a hen party eighteen months ago, although I’ve dreamed of heated loungers and saunas and the benefits of water jet massages in a delicious hot tub, often. The thermal spa at Beyond Escapes doesn’t disappoint. There’s an area with foot spas, a sauna, steam room and tropical shower, plus an outside vitality pool complete with massage jets and a very cosy 36 degree temperature, along with a relaxation room featuring heated loungers and as many magazines you could wish to read.
My friend Nat joined me for the afternoon, and we both chose the full body massage as our treatment. Now I don’t want to go over the top here but IT WAS THE BEST MASSAGE I’VE EVER HAD. Seriously. It trumped the Ayurvedic massage I had while travelling in India, and the dreamy massage I had on a beach in Thailand. It even beat the hot oil head massage I had in Sri Lanka and the vigorous massage and exfoliation I had in a Turkish baths on holiday a few years ago. It was incredible.
The freestyle deep tissue massage used Elemis body oils (I chose the de-stress option scented with rosemary, lavender, geranium and marjoram) – to work away tension and release toxins. Stephanie, the magician who did my massage, told me she’s training in Reiki, and incorporated some of the healing techniques into my massage. I’m not sure what the technical term is but at the end she did this thing where she placed her hands either side of my head and it felt like she was literally oozing calmness into my brain. Honestly, after the massage it felt like I’d woken up from an eight hour sleep!
After a delicious afternoon tea, another stint with the foot spas and sauna and a little lie down with a magazine, it was time to go home. I expected to feel so blissed out I’d crawl straight into bed, but I found the afternoon had the opposite effect on me. Instead, I felt refreshed and rejuvenated – so much so that I hit my computer and worked until gone midnight, then woke up at 5am to get a couple more hours of work in the following day. This is definitely not my regular routine!
We left convinced of the benefits of a spa package and promised ourselves we wouldn’t leave it another eighteen months before we went again. Consider this woman well and truly converted.
Thanks to Beyond Escapes Devon for inviting me along. All views and content are my own. To find out more about the resort check out their website here. For more information about how I work with brands head over to my Work With Me page or get in touch via email – firstname.lastname@example.org.