Starting the year with the launch of her book A Love Affair With A Total Stranger, and rapidly finishing another novel ready for publication, author, Lucy Robinson was in need of a bit of a break. Thank goodness for Hotel Verta !
Naturally, I arrived at the Hotel Verta in my own luxury helicopter: the hotel has its own helipad so the journey was spectacularly easy and rather fun. Those without helicopters, however, may find it harder to find this little getaway; it’s on a slightly cut-off section of riverside Battersea that makes it an unlikely place to stumble on while wandering around London.
One of the questions I’m asked most frequently as an author is, ‘Are your heroines based on yourself?’ I tend to robustly deny any connection but in the case of my most recent leading lady, a workaholic called Charley, there is no denying it. Spa days are about as likely to be seen in my too-busy schedule as nights out raving with the Pope. So my visit to Spa Verta was a luxury of inestimable value – a wonderful, relaxing break from life that I’d recommend to anyone. Spa Verta is an ultra-modern, sleek, low-lit complex; stunningly designed and, rare in London, I’d imagine – wonderfully quiet. There’s the usuals – a sauna and steam room – but there’s also a ‘sanarium’ too; a slightly cooler, more spacious version of the sauna that is a lot less overwhelming. I passed out in there almost straight away. There is also an impressive hydrotherapy pool featuring all sorts of bells and whistles, and slightly cramped but nicely kitted-out changing rooms.
I was the very lucky recipient of a [Comfort Zone] Oriental Spa Day Ritual, a combination of yummy food, yummy treatments and all-day access to the yummy spa facilities. It was, basically, amazing. The treatment itself comprised a short but very sweet foot massage and then an unusual and absolutely blissful full body massage. No expense was spared – my therapist even mixed up a steaming bowl of aromatherapy oil which was placed below the table, drifting gently up into my face. The massage incorporates some normal massage movements but also some gentle pulling, stretching and compressing of my limbs which was heavenly. After the session I passed out in the relaxation lounge, only to wake up and revive myself with a great selection of free healthy snacks and artisan loose-leaf teas. I should also note that my therapist and indeed all of the spa staff were not just helpful, they were angelic. By the time I left I wanted to take them out for dinner and buy them all flowers because they had worked so hard to make me feel like a princess.
I was a bit disappointed to be seated overlooking an ugly car park, rather than at the tranquil riverside terrace outside, but a few seconds later a helicopter came out of nowhere and landed right in front of me and I realised that I actually had a front-row seat at a busy London heliport. The food was more beautifully presented than anything I’ve ever eaten – imagine vegetables of every colour made into tiny, vermicelli-like ribbons, decorating a platter of mouth-watering Dim Sum dotted with oriental fruits and vegetables – and it tasted every bit as good as it looked. Don’t be put off by mentions of ‘light lunches’ – you’ll be well fed.
– DO take a chill on one of the heated, contoured recliners in the sauna / steam room area. They are the essence of comfort!
– DO take a cocktail or snack up in one of the restaurants, even if you’re not on a spa package that includes food – the views are stunning and it’s a wonderfully stylish, relaxed place
– DON’T expect the hydrotherapy pool to act as a hot tub: glorious it is, hot it ain’t.
– DON’T try to cram your day into a few hours – once you’re there you’ll want to stay all day.
This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.