All posts tagged: spa breaks

Review: Six Senses Douro Valley, Portugal

Six Senses Douro Valley is the new-ish 57-room spa resort in the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Douro Valley. It’s a world-class spa combining wine and wellness. Situated in picturesque vineyards overlooking the majestic River Douro, the property dates back to the late 19th century and is located around an hour from Porto in northern Portugal. The resort is the first venture of its kind for Six Senses in Europe and marks a period of rapid expansion for the company. Most of the guest rooms have impressive river views and the wine library and restaurants fully embrace the viticulture of the region. As well as the organic garden the 19-acre property offers a large outdoor pool, walking tracks through the vineyards to the river, and its own forest. The spa at Six Senses Douro Valley is vast and was the European launch pad for the brand’s new Integrated Wellness Programme. The spa reception area is a fresh, open space with minimalist surfaces, grey wooden floors and polished concrete walls, complemented by the light grey and sandy tones of the upholstered …

Where to spa in 2015

The spa market never stands still and 2015 is already shaping up to be an exciting one with spa resorts opening across Europe and some impressive locations abroad, it’s time to get booking ahead for the best opening deals. Portugal – Six Senses Douro Valley Overlooking the vineyards of the Douro Valley, this is the first European spa property for Six Senses. Taking over a 19th century manor house, it’s given a 21st century make-up bringing it bang up to date ensuring its ready to deliver some top notch spa treatments. www.sixsenses.com Italy – JW Marriott Venice Resort & Spa, Venice This has recently opened on Sacca Sessola, a private island in the Venice lagoon, this new 266 room resort is set in 40 acres of olive groves and has an eight-room spa. Promising views of St Marks Square – this is the place to spa in style in 2015. www.marriott.co.uk Maldives – Amilla Fushi Minimalist lines, sea views and daily spa treatments – what could be better. Modern villas and infitity pools set the …

To swim with a view

Everyone loves a pool with a view, especially if it’s an infinity pool. Here is a collection of inspiring images that will make you want to book a holiday right away. It’s not the definitive list of the very best, by any means. But spa lovers note, these hotels and resorts all have a spa. Overlooking the sea, the jungle, the desert or a river below, don’t delay, soak in the scenery and book a spa break right now. ALILA UBUD, BALI The infinity pool is suspended over the jungle high above the Ayung river below. The views stretch endlessly into Bali’s lush, tropical rainforest – with only the wildlife (including regular visits from the monkeys) for company. Alila Ubud is an enchanting hillside retreat located only minutes away from the ecentre of Ubud, Bali’s artistic cultural centre. Try: the Balinese Massage Rooms from £140 per night. www.alilahotels.com/ubud BAY OF ISLANDS –  RAHIMOANA, EAGLES NEST, NEW ZEALAND Eagles Nest offers five world-class luxury villas which have been awarded as one of the World’s10 Best Cliff Edge …

Life through the lense: join Spa Man on instagram

In today’s digital world of social media which is dominated by selfies, we are living our life for the camera. This can result in images of true brilliance that make you stop, think and dream. Others however are less inspiring and totally self-obsessed. Whether you like it or not – our lives are lived online and we share, retweet and like images, photos and icons all day long. As a writer and spa explorer, the camera and resulting image is an instant way of capturing a moment forever. It can be shared with the world in a matter of seconds, filtered, adapted and captioned. Images are so important to the travel and spa industry. I share lots on facebook and twitter and of course, here on The Spa Man. But for instagram, which I have only just joined, it’s all about the image. Join me now at my instagram profile: markthespaman

Plus size spas?

I’m not quite sure whether this is something to celebrate or if it’s revealing my prejudices. UK Spa bookings specialist SpaSeekers, which represents over 500 spas nationwide, has introduced a Plus Size Spas category to its website to help visitors identify the UK spas which provide size friendly amenities and facilities. Whilst on the one hand, this is obviously responding to a need, on the other hand I find this really depressing that we need it at all. Yes, the nation is getting larger. Amenities include the provision of larger sized robes, bigger towels, wider treatment couches and a policy of making sure each guest is made to feel comfortable in the spa environment. In addition, some of the spas offer spacious individual changing rooms, larger shower cubicles and wider dining chairs without arm rests. Spas that have signed up to the feature include: Clarice House, Macdonald Hotels which has 22 spa hotels nationwide, Q Hotels with 17 spa hotels, Sopwell House Hotel in St Albans, St David’s Spa in Cardiff, Academy Spa in Harrogate, …

Condé Nast Traveller Spa Awards 2014

Condé Nast Traveller has announced the winners of The Spa Awards 2014, in association with Healing Holidays. Imagine, you could soon be visiting Six Senses, Zighy Bay (above). Drum roll!  And the winners are: Most Avant-Garde Clinic – Lonhea, Switzerland Best Value For Weight Loss – Absolute Sanctuary, Thailand Most Consistent High Perfomer – IN:SPA Best Healthy Hideaway – Vamizi Island, Mozambique Most Effective Reboot – Six Senses Zighy Bay, Oman Most Soulful Spa – Song Saa, Cambodia Best New Destination Spa – Vana, India

Award-winning spas: UK/Ireland

So, here’s three of the best spas and they are award winners too. Aligned with the World Spa and Wellness Awards, the Professional Beauty Awards has a few categories to recognise the best spas in the UK. Focussing on high standards and best practice if this list doesn’t inspire you to visit a spa today, nothing will. Day Spa of the Year Winner: The Woodland Spa, Burnley Residential Spa of the Year – 10 Rooms or Fewer Winner: The Spa at Armathwaite Hall, Keswick Residential Spa of the Year – 11 Rooms or More Winner: Oceo Spa at Seafield Golf & Spa Hotel, County Wexford, Ireland

Top 10 winter wellness spa breaks

Paul Joseph from Health and Fitness Travel, which specialises in tailor-made healthy holidays worldwide, has drawn up a shortlist of the top 10 luxurious wellness breaks in Europe. From charming boutique well-being retreats in Italy, detox holidays in Spain and ski and spa breaks in the Austrian Alps, there is something to suit everyone and ensure you return home feeling completely rejuvenated this winter. Try Ayurveda for your Body, Mind and Soul Madeira: Galo Resort Experience the relaxing and rejuvenating properties of an Ayurveda holiday at the Galo Resort in Madeira this winter. The on-site wellness centre provides personalised treatments stemming from ancient Ayurvedic practices as well as acupuncture, Reiki, yoga and meditation classes for a truly all-encompassing experience. This healthy break also offers specialist golfing holidays and our exclusive Fusion Fitness range which allows you to tailor your stay to suit your specific wellness needs. Situated right on the sea front and boasting beautiful views of the surrounding coastline the resort is ideal for anyone seeking a luxury healthy holiday. With the variety of …

National Spa Week 2013

It’s National Spa Week, 16-22 September 2013, which means that spas right across the country are vying for your attention and usually offering some pretty good deals to get you throught the door. Wahanda is a good place to check out some deals and offers and a great way to experience new spas. Check out the details here . Or over at Travel Zoo there are some substantial savings to be had by clicking here. I have taken some inspiration from Visit England which is highlighting some of the country’s very best spa locations. Historical The Twilight Package offered by Bath Thermae Spa is one of the country’s most romantic spa experiences.  As the sun sets over historic Bath, try out the whirlpools, the neck massage jets and the airbeds, soak in the mineral-rich waters and indulge in a delicious platter and a glass of wine. Once you’re revitalised, take a stroll through Bath’s honey-coloured Georgian streets before sitting down for an intimate dinner at historic The Pump Room Restaurant, with its sparkling chandeliers and …

August is all about men at De Vere

For the month of August only, De Vere is offering men 25% off all treatments and products in spas across all De Vere Hotels and Village Urban Resorts. With a variety of treatments on offer, from the ever-popular massages and manicures, to facials and St Tropez spray tans, there has never been a better time to recharge your batteries and give yourself a bit of fine tuning. From what I know of the De Vere group so far (The Grand, Brighton) I am impressed. Each of De Vere’s nine hotels are all unique and not corporate or dull. They are spread across the country from the majestic Scottish Highlands to Brighton beach and are chosen for their distinctive British character, individual style and quirky charm. Properties in the group include: Mottram Hall, The Grand Brighton, Cameron House on Loch Lomond, Carden Park, The Belfry, Oulton Hall, Slaley Hall, Belton Woods and Dunston Hall. Did you know that De Vere is the UK’s premier golf resort brand; operating 19 championship golf courses? So if you like …

What men like at the spa

I like a survey, especially one that looks at men and spas. lastminute.com undertook a survey of 1000 men asking them what they like about taking a spa break with a partner. Here are the findings: 1. Massages 38% 2. Enjoying some alone time together 29% 3. Pampering treatments together 25% 4. Having sex in a new/different location 21% 5. Soft,fluffy dressing gowns 19% 6. The female/male masseuse 17% 7. Getting away from the children 17% 8. Having more sex than usual 16% 9. A skin softening facial 14% 10. Seeing their partner in swimwear 10% So it’s not all about the spa it’s a bit about the extra sexual opportunities! Go on, grab a spa break today.