Before this year I very rarely, if ever, took trips to a spa. Like most of us my spare money is either spent on food, travel or clothing and for some reason a spa day always seems way too frivolous. This is crazy when you think that taking some time out to relax is way more beneficial to your body and soul than a new pair of shoes or a fancy dinner.
However, after having the craziest start to 2019 it really doesn’t take a lot of persuading to get me to go to a spa. Being in Wales there are only a handful of luxury places to go that will give you a great experience, but the Vale Spa is definitely one of them. It sits in 650 acres of Welsh countryside which is relaxing enough already, especially if you’re used to living in the city. I also went on the sunniest day which made it even nicer and more special, as that’s a very rare thing in Wales.
The drive there was so easy and the staff at the desk gave me the warmest welcome, with a chic white robe and slippers along with a lovely gift from the spa. As far as robes go the Vale Spa’s white, waffle ones are the best. I’m a bit of a robe snob but these instantly made me feel relaxed and ready for a pamper. As much as I wanted to stay in reception forever (they have a wall of Clarins products that my credit card needed to purchase) I decided to hit the spa.
The spa itself is to the right of the hotel and once you’re checked in you’re free to explore the relaxation rooms, pool or sauna. The spa rooms have an eastern feel, with lots of pattern, buddhas and waterfalls that are set in low light to keep it relaxed.
There are five relaxation rooms to choose from depending on how you like to spend your time, whether it’s taking a nap or reading a magazine. I headed to the water beds which sit next to a waterfall fountain that creates the most relaxing sounds. This was such a treat, to just take some time out and really switch off in peace. The water beds are right next to the slumber chamber, which has beds draped in silk fabric and set under golden lanterns that you can doze off in after your treatment.
If you’re looking to treat your skin there’s a smaller sauna upstairs that’s just for the spa. I went in here and it was completely empty which was so nice. Alternatively you can go down to the pool for the steam room and jacuzzi. There’s also a sun terrace outside, so on a nice day you can take your robe and catch some sun in between dips in the pool. This part overlooks the gorgeous scenery, so you can really make the most of the location and take in the countryside.
After spending a few hours relaxing I went back to the waiting room for my treatment. I was booked in for the Rose Quartz Treatment, a full body massage that’s designed to leave you feeling totally relaxed and seriously glowy.
It’s a 55 minute treatment which my therapist started by body brushing my feet, legs and arms. Body brushing is so good for you as it stimulates blood flow and exfoliates your skin. This not only removes toxins but improves the appearance of cellulite to give you smoother and shinier skin. It’s actually the one spa treatment that we should all be doing at home!
Next she used the Temple Spa Truffle Oil to massage my skin, starting with my legs. Truffle Oil promotes skin hydration, brightens, plumps fine lines and helps to repair damaged skin while making you smell insanely luxurious. The pressure was so perfect, my back is constantly knotty from sitting at a desk and it felt so much better afterwards. She also used the oil for a scalp massage and I left it in my hair to nourish my locks as well as my skin.
After my treatment I let the oil sink in for the rest of the day and my skin looked amazing afterwards. I also felt so much more relaxed and rejuvenated after my treatment and it was so nice to take that time to switch off.
As part of the spa day experience a buffet lunch is served in the main reception area so that you can choose a time that works around your treatments. The food was amazing and the table was full of fresh salad, couscous, smoked salmon and light bites. This is exactly what you need on a spa day, nothing too heavy, just food that will make you feel good. This is also served with fresh juice, but if like me you’re a caffeine addict you can order a cappuccino instead.
I really liked the vibe here too, it was nice to sit with everyone in a really relaxed environment without you having to change out of your robe. I was opposite a group of girls on a hen party and I think the spa would be so perfect for big groups. There are loads of treatment rooms and so much space that everyone would be able to enjoy the experience. I can’t wait to come back with my friends and try a few more of the treatments. I think the Serenity Spa Day sounds particularly perfect or the Sanctuary Spa Day if you really need a pamper.
I had such a gorgeous time and I loved exploring the spa and trying out the treatments. If you’re in need of a little break then I’ll pop a link to the main spa page here and a list of their treatments here. They’re also opening a gin distillery at Hensol Castle later this year, where guests of the hotel can go on a gin making class, making it even more of a perfect destination. Bath robes and cocktail glasses at the ready…