Occasionally in life we’re asked to step outside our comfort zone, be a man, and take one for the team. This month I was that man venturing into unchartered territory, but since that meant going to have an afternoon’s worth of luxury treatments at a spa, well then, you know what, I’m man enough for it.
A Dover Soul Refresher
So, last Sunday, after a typical week of late nights, excesses and stresses, it was off to the Dover Marina Hotel for a bit of R&R. Some men may even be manly enough to go to a spa on their own. I’m not quite that manly, so I took my girlfriend Pru.
We got a UK Spa Fortnight Exclusive 2 for 1 One Night Spa Break*
Normal Price: £298
Sale Price: £149 (50% off)
With fast trains taking just over an hour from St Pancras in London we were there in no time. As the two sexes can have very different opinions on what to expect from these sorts of things we decided to tell the tale from both our points of view:
Very nice and picturesque and right on the beach overlooking the most famous parts of the town. As well as the Spa, it also has a pretty well stocked gym and a sauna which I made use of whilst waiting for Pru to have her treatments done.
The first thing that strikes you when you arrive is the fresh sea air and we’re right on the sea front right next to the White Cliffs of Dover; there’s a very peaceful feel here. The Hotel has lovely Victorian décor but with updated, plush modern furnishings. The gym and spa therapists were very friendly and happy to give us a brief tour of the expansive facilities.
Functional but fine. Free Wi-Fi, bath, TV, comfy bed. Everything you need really.
Although smallish, the rooms are cosy, with all the practical additions to a hotel room you could need. The bed was very comfy and the wi-fi was accessible from both the bedroom and the bar and reception room downstairs. All I ask for in a room is a fluffy towel and powerful shower; which they had!!
We ate in the hotel restaurant for dinner and breakfast and both were very good. The menu for dinner had so many great options! I went for the Chef’s Special Sea Bass Curry and it was excellent.
For lunch we headed to the adjoining hotel café which serves local fish and chips and a very reasonably priced afternoon tea of scones and cream in the hotel bar area. Dinner in the restaurant was fantastic. Inspired by our window seat looking out on to the sea I chose King Scallops, which were very light and tasty. The maincourse, a classic herb crusted Rack of Lamb, was cooked perfectly.
Things kicked off with a mineral salt scrub, which was a new experience for me. Pru has told me much about the art of ‘exfoliation’ but I’m still a little confused by it all. Having said that post-treatment my skin did feel rather manly and soft afterwards.
I then had an hour-long aromatherapy full body massage. I’m more versed in this one, and have to say that this was definitely one of the best ones I’ve had. The right amount of pressure without causing the kind of unbearable pain that anyone who’s had a proper Thai massage may have encountered. By the time it was all over I have to say I felt very Zen indeed.
My therapist was absolutely lovely and very serene and helped me embrace my ‘calm zone’ before the massage began. The smallish room was dimly lit with a pleasant aromatic smell, making me feel safe. Again, I’m happy to report the towels were very soft; an absolute must for any spa!
My first treatment was a woman’s favourite; a full body sea salt scrub. It left me feeling soft, cleansed and amazing- think the effects of lying on a sandy beach for a week. It’s a strange, tingly sensation of a treatment – you are being rubbed down with an exfoliating gloves and bumpy sea salts. When I washed off my treatment in the spa showers, my skin was silky smooth- there is no better feeling.
Or so I thought…. after my scrub, I had a truly invigorating, relaxing (so much so I almost fell asleep) hour long body massage- it was one of the best I’ve had in a while. I love the smell of aromatic oils and the Dermalogica treatment oil they use at this spa was no exception.
The rating – 4 Stars
The 19th century Victorian decor has been retained, but with state-of-the-art facilities added to it. Full of charm and character and boasting sea views, this is the perfect spot for a Dover weekend break.
Spa breaks for couples: Waterfront Spa
The hotel has a variety of packages for those looking for a romantic spa break. With the room included, you can select a treatment, and enjoy everything from a back massage to a three course dinner. The fluffy robe and slippers are included!