Review: Sanctuary Spa, Covent Garden

After the craziness of the Aussie party last Saturday, a nice relaxing Sunday was much needed. Sarah and I headed into St Albans for some breakfast before my train back into London. Last year at the Take the Heat Aussie party, I won a champagne spa day for the Sancutary Spa in Covent Garden. It was almost due to run out, so I decided to use it to try and get back to normal after the party.

The spa is nice and easy to find – come out of Covent Garden tube station, and its a short walk around the corner. (Of course, there’s a battle to get through the tourists, but still) The entrance to the spa is actually at the back of the tiny shop front, then you head up some stairs and suddenly arrive in a huge reception leading through to the restaurant. Just from looking at the outside of the building, its difficult to realise just how huge the spa is, but there seems to be more and more rooms to discover.

After a little problem checking in (I didn’t have a debit card in my name with me, and no cash, so couldn’t set up an account if I wanted to buy more items – it would have been helpful if this had been mentioned when I called up to book!), I headed to the changing room to put my swim suit on, and the dressing gown that was waiting in my locker. I went into the lounge, a room full of plush purple velvet chairs and sofas everywhere, and had my glass of champagne and another plate full of eggs benedict – I had already had one with Sarah, not realising that was the only choice for brunch! There were a few groups in there already, lounging around in their dressing gowns and under blankets. I wasn’t the only person alone, but still felt a bit out of place sitting there reading an old Elle Decoration and trying to eat the runniest poached eggs from a low table.

After that, I sat by the atrium pool and read a copy of Red magazine – which was a little strange, because one of my tweets had been published in that issue! (I didn’t actually know, so I’m reading it and…oh, thats my name!) My first treatment was in the Infrared Sauna which was odd really. It has a row of seats, with back rests that have heaters in, and in front of the seats are more heaters. The session lasted for 25 minutes, and was oddly comfortable. Not many people who went in at the same time as me stayed for the full time, but I had read that it could help with back pain and can help burn calories – I think you would need more than one treatment to get any real benefit though!

After that, I lounged a bit more around the koi carp pool, before heading for my prescription facial. The facial was actually quite nice, I’m always a bit worried that I’m going to have a bad reaction to the products used, but my skin didn’t look too bad afterward.

While it was not what I would usually do the day after a crazy party, it was quite a nice and unusual experience. However, it would have been nice to have been told to bring a paper book (since I couldn’t take my iPad, apparently) and to have been told about the tab thing. Considering how long it took to book the treatments over the phone (not in a bad way, I was having a nice chat with the lady!), it wouldn’t have been difficult to add this info in to when you’re being told about bringing your own swim suit, etc. I think that I would have enjoyed the whole thing a lot more if I had been with a friend – the majority of people there were in large groups, and I felt a little awkward wandering around on my own!

I’d like to go to a spa again, but next time I would want to go with a group of friends! Anyone fancy it? (What spas are in Bristol? Would it be weird to go with the boyfriend?)


  1. Kelly says

    I love a spa day, so relaxing, but agree handy if you are given full info. And why no ipad? Would they be the same with a kindle? Like to keep it old school?
    The Thermae Spa in Bath is good (pricey though) and me and my sister went to a lovely one called barceló combe grove manor hotel.

  2. Harriet says

    I’m a bit scared of spas I think. I feel like people will look at me like ‘*she’s* not a spa person!’ This looks nice though – my mum’s been a couple of times and said it was quite nice.

    I nearly ended up going to the Bath Spa for my friend’s hen do but couldn’t make it in the end, but you should definitely go there and report back!


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