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How to make the most of your Valentine’s Day spa break

Mark Smith AKA The Spa Man visits around 30 spas a year, so when it comes to spa and grooming he knows what he’s talking about. Writing for magazines across the world, he talks about the gift of experience for Valentine’s Day…

romantic spa

Google romantic spa break’ and pages upon pages of spas appear in your search engine promising the very best, most romantic spa experience that money can buy. But are they truly romantic and do they offer great value?

1.Think about the value of the experience

You wouldn’t baulk at spending around £100 on dinner (including some good wine) for Valentine’s Day, but you could easily find a spa day package for around the same price. When searching for options it’s important to remember to consider what you want from the experience. Do some research and ensure you know what the package includes and also what facilities the spa actually offers. I also think spa breaks with overnight accommodation, use of facilities, dinner and treatments included can present excellent value.

Lifehouse spa pool essex

2.Check the facilities available in advance

You can get the best value for money by making sure that the spa has a good pool, Jacuzzi plus steam and sauna area. Not every spa has a full set of hydro facilities. This not only gives you more things to do; you can arrive early to make the most of your spa day, bur relaxing pre-treatment in heat and steam will also boost the treatment benefits, ensuring that you enter the treatment room more chilled, with a soothed mind and relaxed muscles.

3.Choose your treatments wisely

Book a treatment in a couple’s room but remember you will both be face down and won’t really be talking to one another. Some more luxurious spas have a couple’s bath in the couple’s suite/treatment room. A package that offers an afternoon or two-hour slot with prepared bath, champagne and massage is a real treat, but they do often get booked out so book in advance. They are also very popular for wedding proposals - just saying.

Dolphin Square Hammam 1 (2)

4.Book a hammam treatment

My top tip is to ensure your spa day/weekend includes a Moroccan Hammam or mud ritual. This is definitely one of the best couple’s experiences. Drawing on the spa traditions of Turkey and Morocco it’s great fun and really gets you into the spa vibe. The Hammam is reserved for your private enjoyment and you will be guided in and explained how to apply the various muds to different parts of your body, then left to it.

You can apply the mud to each other and then the steam works its magic, opening your pores, allowing the rejuvenating muds to spring into action. They really work wonders on your skin, and sometimes includes an exfoliation scrub. At the end, there’s a warm shower to remove the mud. It’s brilliant and my top tip for creating a memorable experience for your romantic weekend.

5.Look out for kids!

Children and romantic weekends away don’t really mix. You might leave your own kids at home, but don’t necessarily want to be splashing around in the pool with other guest’s children. If it is a family friendly spa or hotel - make sure you ask when the kids swimming times are. Or choose an adult-only hotel and spa.

6.Don’t rule out a twilight Valentine’s break

You don’t have to stay overnight to have a wonderful time. A twilight package where you enter the spa around 5pm, perhaps with a glass of fizz and light meal plus spa treatment, enjoying the facilities until closing time, is a really lovely way to spend a mid week Valentine’s evening.

Galgorm afternoon tea

7.Make time for food on Valentine’s Day

On a spa day, instead of lunch you might choose afternoon tea for two. This is another excellent way to break up the day between treatments and time in the spa.

A full spa day requires sustenance and I always recommend booking an all-inclusive experience that includes lunch with drinks. You will usually find that a two-course lunch is included in the package with a spa treatment and plenty of time to enjoy the facilities in the morning and afternoon.

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