London is ashamedly lacking when it comes to good spas. The facilities at even the 'best' places are often underwhelming and the range of treatments poor. I am still haunted by the nightmare facial at the Jumeirah Carlton Tower, where the towels were grey and threadbare, the therapist smelt of onions and the treatment rooms were dank and cell-like; if I hadn't forked out £145 I'd think I was a Guantanamo detainee.
The best spa I have ever been to was at the Four Seasons Resort in Langkawi and since boarding a plane destined for the Malaysian jungle isn't exactly practical, I decided to give the London equivalent a try. The Four Seasons in London's Park Lane has stood there since the 1970s but was closed for a complete refurbishment and reopened in January 2011. The interior, designed by Pierre- Yves Rochon is rich and sumptuous. Every part of the hotel, including the rooms have been planned with meticulous attention to detail and style- but nowhere is this more apparent than on the 10th floor...
As the elevator doors open onto the 10th floor you are greeted by one of London's best kept secrets, the breathtaking Four Seasons Spa, designed by Eric Parry. The eye is automatically drawn through the space, out onto the endless London rooftops and gently swaying trees of Hyde Park. It's like you're high up in the clouds, which seem to be within touching distance through the dazzling floor to ceiling windows that stretch across the space.
I was automatically enveloped in a feeling of tranquility and literally all my worries slipped away as I sat curled in my chair observing the busy London traffic below and sipping on a detoxifying Passion fruit concoction. Having browsed the menu I decided to go for the Omorovicza Gold Facial, as I had fallen asleep on my terrace the previous day and the unusually strong sun left me with a face like a grilled tomato. Needless to say, my plush surroundings imbued me with very high expectations.
I stepped into the changing rooms, which like the rest of the spa have jaw dropping panoramic views stretching into the horizon. In the serene white space there was everything that a girl could possibly need from hair styling tools to chilled bottles of water, fluffy robes and a plethora of products by the Organic Pharmacy. Next door you have a futuristic looking sauna (again with gorgeous views), steam room and vitality pool- and everything is simply pristine.
The waiting area was dimly lit with herbal tea and little cones of dried fruit and nuts and all the latest glossies. I nibbled on some cranberries and papaya whilst inspecting Beyonce's cover of Harpers Bazar.
The Treatment: Omorovicza Gold Facial
"If you're not familiar with Omorovicza then here's a little background for you. It hails from Budapest and harnesses the curative properties of Hungary's thermal waters which are rich in natural minerals. Whilst people from all over the world visit Budapest to 'take' the waters at their luxurious baths, Omorovicza are bringing the waters to us"- Elle Online
My therapist, the lovely Anna, took me through to a beautiful treatment room. As I lay on the heated bed she applied wonderfully fragrant cleansers, exfoliants, masks, creams and serums to my visage. By this point I was so relaxed that I my mind was totally hazy - but I still remember thinking to myself "I will definitely be doing this once a month from now on". The treatment continued for nearly an hour and a half, during which my skin was massaged and kneaded with layer upon layer of Omorovicza's potent natural products infused with gold leaf and healing mud. Anna paid particular attention to the cheeks employing a massage technique that she assured me would both detoxify the body and plump the face (not that I need any help in that regard!).
After the treatment my skin glowed and I felt fantastic. I proceeded to snuggle up beneath a blanket on the bed in the private relaxation pods and read my book. I truly did not want to leave and contemplated spending the day in my little relaxing bubble. But alas, an hour shot by and it was time to return to the real world.
As I left the Four Seasons Spa I took a wistful look (but definitely not my last) at the beautiful panorama, before rejoining the ranks of people I had been so eagerly observing from my sky high retreat- but of course, I know it's only a matter of time till I'm back. It's an experience I would recommend to anyone and I would love to know what anyone who has been thinks.
Check out their page HERE.