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Massage at The Lifehouse Spa & Hotel

publication date: Aug 17, 2012
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author/source: Christine Mayle
Lifehouse Spa & Hotel – massageFrom the moment Anne and I collected our buzzers from The Lifehouse Spa reception the expectation of an ESPA personalised massage was clear – supreme pampering at its best!

After completing a simple health and well-being questionnaire, including identifying areas on our body that we thought would need special attention, we chose to wait in The Chill area. This low light environment was adorned with comfy sofas and relaxing massage chairs.

There were two other main waiting areas, one a Juice Bar with balcony overlooking the amazing grounds attached to the Spa, the other a more conventional soft sofa area with magazines. By the way I highly recommend trying the smoothies.

We did not have to wait long before our buzzers summoned us to our individual treatment rooms. Abigail, my personal masseuse, greeted me and I was taken to a secluded and quiet treatment room, well away from the main drag. As I had just finished a session in the sauna, steam rooms and swimming pool, Abigail gave me a pair of black paper pants to wear during the treatment. She then explained what I needed to do to prepare for my massage and left me to get ready on the treatment table and arrange myself under the large soft towels (and duvet if I was a bit chilly). I opted for the towels, de-robed and put on the pants, taking a little time to work out which way round they should go (G-strings were never my thing!). In no time Abigail was back and sitting quietly by my side, ready to ask a few questions in order to ensure that the massage was designed to meet my personal needs. She then talked me through a simple but effective sensory test, placing small quantities of two different massage oils on the back of my hands, to determine which best suited my mood. Having taken a deep inhalation of both I elected to go with the ESPA "Energizing" oil, in order to "revitalize and lift" me.

The total massage experience was heaven in disguise – neck, shoulders, back, arms and legs, gently but expertly pummeled and soothed. The ultimate pleasure came towards the end of the 55 minute session with a hair and scalp massage using ESPA Pink Hair and Scalp Mud (£31 for 200g and £18 for 100g). This product, recommended by Abigail as a tonic for my dry hair, worked extremely well. It is reported to "soothe, smooth and nourish" and it certainly lived up to this description. A week later my hair is still seeing the benefits. On several occasions during the massage I felt myself slipping away, as calming music played very quietly in the background. The bliss of tranquility...

Once finished Abigail went through recommended after care and discussed possible products that might assist my skin type and improve my well-being. I confess to being smitten by the Pink Hair & Scalp Mud and it will appear on my Christmas stocking list, if I manage to last that long.  Abigail also recommended it as an aftersun lotion – an even better excuse for buying it early.

The ESPA personalised massage lasts 55 minutes and costs £65 - and is worth every penny!

PWT rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Treatments  which range from facials and manicures to massage can be booked in advance at the Lifehouse Spa & Hotel.