I pride myself on being a bear of discerning taste, and Skye and I were immediately wowed when we arrived at Lion Quays. It’s a leisure venue but it has a specialist spa feel because it’s in a separate building to the hotel so on a day trip it all feels extremely purposeful. From the moment you arrive it’s really well presented; tranquil, relaxing, and a lovely place to visit.
The hotel and the spa are about a minute apart from one another, but being there on a spa day we didn’t have any cause to go to the hotel on this occasion. As your day begins, the staff talk you through the whole spa experience; if you’re a first time guest they show you where your treatments are and where to have lunch, so you feel very well cared for from the start.
In terms of facilities, the spa has an ice cave, two saunas, a steam room, and a clover shaped spa pool which is a little precarious for someone as small as me, but marvellous for your average sized adult. The leisure facilities (more exercise focused that relaxation focused if you’re so inclined) are separated from the spa by a door, but the vibe is very different. There you will find a 25-metre pool, a Jacuzzi, a sauna and a steam room.
You might like to know that the sauna has recently been refurbished, so that’s all shiny and new, and hotel guests can’t just use the spa as they please, they have to have booked it, so I felt very important swanning through to my treatment. Some might say I was verging on smug, but hey, if you can’t be smug when you’ve been clever enough to book a spa day, when can you?… I definitely didn’t pull faces at the non spa goers through the window, that would be bad etiquette.
I had a scalp massage – you know, the kind of glorious treatment that leaves you dribbling out of one side of your mouth, you’re so relaxed. Lots of people think it’s not enough of a treatment, but it includes your shoulders and it makes you feel really relaxed. After our treatments we were taken to the relaxation rooms (there are two), which was just as well as I needed a little time to compose myself.
Lion Quays does a wonderful buffet for spa guests as part of your package. There are starters and salady things so you can choose from healthier options or something more indulgent. My body’s a temple and I didn’t want to overdo it, so I mostly saved myself for the cheesecake at the end.
It’s off a main road, which normally makes me very anxious about noise, but once you’re on site you would have no idea that there’s a spa nearby. At lunch you can sit on the balcony and look out onto the gardens in peace and quiet. We drove thanks to Skye, and frankly that’s probably the easiest way to get there, but the train station isn’t too far and then a taxi would be fine.
I think the next time I go back to Lion Quays (and I will go back), I will go with a group of friends. There’s plenty of space in the relaxation rooms and there are lots of loungers around the pool. That said, there were couples there, so you never know…
Go early and get there as the spa opens for pretty much private use of the spa.
Have your treatments in the morning and luxuriate in the facilities for the rest of the day.
Go to lunch early to get your pick of your favourite desserts.
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