With the snow settling down outside my home-office window I’m realising that the dark days of winter can be quite taxing on the soul and though most people may be wishing away the time til spring or their next summer holiday, there’s no doubt that the stress of the freeze can be enough for us all to set aside a precious few days of ‘me-time’. Luckily for me, a few warmer destinations are on my horizon this month but knowing the possibility of jetting off further afield is not logistically or affordably realistic for everyone, I wanted to share with you a recent girly get-a-way of mine that could be just the thing for your winter woes!
Last weekend my bestie Aimee and I signed off from day to day city life and signed on for a weekend of pure relaxation! I was invited to to stay at the famous Old Course hotel with an experience the brand new water therapy spa, Kohler Waters.
The hotel, famous for it’s on site golf course and lavish traditional interiors, is based in St Andrews, Scotland and after looking into our travel options we decided on opting for the train rather than driving ourselves or flying. There was actually little in the price difference between a flight and the train but the journey was slower at 5hrs and 56 minutes from London Kings Cross. It was such an easy and enjoyable journey though, super comfortable, spacious, clean and with plug sockets and wifi on board I was able to catch up on a little work along the way, before forcefully switching on my out of office on for the next couple of days;).
We arrived to Leuchers station and were met by some luxury wheels and lovely lady who drove us to the grand hotel in style, upon stepping foot inside the luxurious lobby we were met with a glass of bubbles and the check in process was as smooth as they come. We went straight up to our room for the two night stay and it was beautiful, we had actually been given a suite with a large living space, bay windows leading out towards THE SEA!!!!* and golf course and then a large bedroom with double bed. The bathroom was large with double sinks and a huge hot tub style bath and stand-in shower.
*It hadn’t actually dawned on me that we would be staying by the sea until we arrived. I have always been one of these people who travels further afield for a day on the beach and I always underestimate the beauty of the sea that fringes my very own isle! When I was younger my beach trips were limited to Cleethorpes and Skegness, so not two of the finest in the UK (maybe this is why I’ve always shunned our shores), so it was such a welcome shock to be by the seaside in Scotland. Those of you who have read my blog for a while will already know of my love affair for the ocean so needless to say as soon as were were checked in we raced straight back out to the beach. Having arrived in the late afternoon we were lucky enough to catch the sunset and it was beautiful!
After freshening up and taking a dip in the spa rooftop jacuzzi (oohhh yes!) we made our way down to the ground floor for dinner in Sands restaurant. The atmosphere in the restaurant was fantastic and food amazing, they had an allergy menu which was great for me and the yummiest brownie both Aimee and I had ever eaten! We ended up ordering the desert twice over after first taste, once during the following night’s dinner and for room service afterwards 😉 It was THAT good!
The following day, after being blessed with an amazing seaside sunset, being well fed and sleeping in true luxury we were ready for a full day of treatments at Kohler Water’s spa and it.was.a.dream!
Our day started with a welcome to the spa facilities, (whilst sipping on peppermint tea) we were shown around the relaxation area, the thermal oasis which featured a sauna, steam room, hydrotherapy and a plunge pool, the swimming pool and the changing areas so were were familiar with the whole building before beginning with our itinerary for the day.
For our first treatment I opted for the signature Lavender Rain treatment and it was unlike anything I’ve ever had done before, utterly relaxing and soothing. I was first of all given a full body scrub which was amazingly invigorating then once the scrub was applied I was wrapped up snugly in dry towels. Then rather bizarrely, a swinging shower poured over me moving from left to right repeatedly whilst showering down on my body. I was still wrapped in the towels so they were soaking the warm water whilst I was laying down. At first the feeling shocked me as it’s such a unique style of treatment but after I realised what was happening the relaxation was sublime! I felt like a baby wrapped up in my mother’s arms fresh from a warm bath and a welcoming feeling of innocence and youth came over me whilst lying on the bed. Then slowly the towels were removed by my therapist and the scrub washed off slowly with warm running water, this too felt amazing! After the relaxing wash, the bed was dried (as was I) and I hopped back on for a light massage to complete the treatment.
I have always been someone who asks few questions before going in for signature treatments at spas as I really enjoy the feeling of the unknown, I find it often helps me switch off as I never know what to expect and therefore I can’t over think it! This particular treatment stands out from the rest though, it’s a tall order to make me truly detach from my thoughts no matter how relaxing a treatment may be but this feeling of purity and being nurtured was something I have never experienced in a treatment room before. I loved the whole experience.
In my relaxed trance I was then offered another treatment which was a 75 minute deep tissue massage and oh, my, goodness was it amazing! From the first few pressured strokes I could tell that my therapist was an expert, she knew exactly what to do when it came to finding my knots and working on them to ease my tension. She was really great and the whole experience was exactly what you would want when treating yourself and your body to a muscle ‘check-in’. The treatment rooms were large and spacious with high ceilings and the beds were divinely comfortable, luxuriously heated and also had the mechanical ability to move up and dow to ensure premium comfort at all stages of the massage. The towels and bedding were dreamily thick and soft, the temperature of the room was perfect and the music pleasing, all small factors that for me, make up the experience of having a great massage.
After a morning of muscle ease we then moved into the beauty salon for some hand and feet pampering. Aimee had a beautiful manicure with gel set polish (which will last for two weeks once applied) and I opted for the famous Margaret Dabbs pedicure which was fantastic. Again, everything about the treatment room was right, comfortable chairs, a large fresh area that was designed so that you had your own space but could also chat with your loved one also having a treatment.
After a morning (and a half!) of pure pampering we enjoyed a healthy two course lunch at the spa restaurant, which, as the evening before, was absolutely yummy and catered well for food requirements. We then had the rest of the afternoon to enjoy the thermal oasis and pool areas.
The communal areas were quite busy but we were there on a weekend so there was that to consider in terms of the people traffic, all the while though we were able to use the facilities at our leisure. Aimee and I were particular fans of the cold plunge pool, I love alternating between sauna and plunge to really get my muscles working in the spa but for those less brave to submerge there was a body ice dispenser outside the heated rooms.
After a few hours in the wet suites we exited to the showers and found there was an extra steam room by the ladies changing room which we loved! This one we had all to ourselves before retiring to the showers and I loved the touch of having that extra option for one last (female only) steam 🙂
The changing rooms were everything you would expect from a luxury spa, lush robes were provided as well and slippers and towels and face products for cleansing and toning were by the vanity area as well as hair dryers and straighteners. The whole spa is executed perfectly and the clean large spaces are a theme throughout, giving the spa a modern edge over the traditional style of the hotel itself. You can wander down straight from your hotel room in your robes which I personally always find is the best ‘small touch’ when it comes to staying at a luxury hotel as it means you can retire back to your room after relaxing straight away, rather than having to face the real world with getting dressed and ready immediately after your spa session.
After a day of absolute bliss at Kohler Waters Spa Aimee and I had worked up a desire for something sweet and excitedly ordered down for some room service treats, when the team delivered our desserts they also came up bearing bunch of lovely flowers and hotel teddy bears for Aimee and I, which was, the sweetest touch! Such a thoughtful gesture from the hotel and such a lovely personal present.
After utilising the beautifully picturesque bathroom for some ‘grammable’ pictures we slowly but surely got ready for another dinner in the hotel, all the while sipping on champagne, watching cheesy movies on the TV (as you do on a girlie break) and watching another dreamy sunset from our bay windows.
The Old Course Hotel features six restaurants in total and our second evening dinner had been arranged for us in the top floor of the hotel at Road Hole restaurant. In keeping with the high level of service and attention to excellence the meal was thoroughly enjoyed by myself and Aimee and we were particularly grateful when our waiter allowed us to oder the brownie as our dessert from the restaurant four floors down 😉 Guys, it was THAT GOOD!
The last day of our short get-a-away we treated ourselves to a beachside breakfast…….from the comfort of our room 😉 Ordering up a large spread (partly for the gram, partly for the hunger) and enjoying working our way through everything whilst watching the sun come up over the ocean, which was always in plain sight from our bed.
We had the most amazing time relaxing in the spa and retiring to luxury in our suite. The whole experience of getting away for a few days (even though we were relatively close to home) was divine. Most of us don’t give a second thought about booking a holiday once or twice a year but when was the last time you invested in a spa break? That’s really is that though isn’t it? An investment. Taking care of your mind and body by retiring the the spa is such a precious and healing way to spend a few days in my opinion and one I have only really discovered in the past few years. If winter is biting or your mind is travelling faster than your feet then I highly recommend a spa break and I don’t hesitate in giving Kohler Waters the C&C seal of approval!
Pin This Post: