As a single working mum, the word "spa" seems the furthest thing on my mind as I buzz around town with my yoga mat under my arm, smartphone in my hand, and the other arm wrapped around my two-year-old daughter as she sits snuggly on my right hip like an Egyptian princess because she refuses to go in her new yoyo buggy "Next stop Monkey music in Southgate then I'm teaching Vinyasa flow in Princess Manor park" in between feeding and planning nap times Sorry spa who?" My long term friend Lauren (also a gorgeous single mummy, with about as much luck with men as me) *looks up to the third eye and sighs* "where do we find them?" has organised a spa retreat for beauty and media bloggers. I was lucky enough to have an invitation. Of course, no spa day would be complete without some drama beforehand. On this occasion, my car broke down (just as it had ended its 2-year warranty). Typical. After a few ninja moves and swapping cars with my mum (who was on professional nanny duty), I finally arrived at Champneys in Tring.
The driveway up to the spa is as jaw-dropping as you would expect from an ex-Rothschild property. Its ethos is to bring stillness to a busy life – much like my own working ethos. Champneys Tring is set in 170 acres of rolling parkland, so you feel like you are away from the hustle and bustle of London Town, yet it's easily accessible from London Kings Cross in just under 40mins. I was welcomed by the team from Champneys and Thalgo, who work with Champneys to deliver state-of-the-art wellness treatments in their new "Wellbeing and Detox" Centre. This was what I was going to experience – and experience it, I did! First up on the menu was a vegan/gluten-free brunch. I tried the Turmeric latte, which is a favourite of mine and a great wake-up drink. I then tried the seaweed muesli (which turned my mouth blue due to the Spirulina and Blue Algae); however, it was surprisingly delicious and filling!
Next, we changed into our robes and entered the salt and oxygen chamber. I gladly welcomed the idea of sitting in the warm cosy room and gossiping with my girlfriends. In truth, I forgot I was in a detox chamber! As I talked, I inhaled the salt and oxygen air into my lungs, opening up the upper respiratory system and clearing mucus. This treatment is fabulous for Yogis like me. Yoga is all about the breath, so if we can breathe more clearly, we can live more profoundly, which will benefit our physical practice as we aim to link breath with the postures. Next up was the foot spa by Thalgo and the seaweed detox shot to drink. I would be bluffing if I said the shot was tasty, although some of my girlfriends seemed to drink it pretty quickly, which begs the question of what they were used to swallowing (say no more)! Despite tasting like salt water, it did feel like it immediately energised me, which is essential for a busy mother and a physical yoga practice! After that, we hit the Thalassotherapy pool. The jets work on cellulite and stubborn areas, and the water is so warm and rich with salts to detox – there's no need to travel to Reykjavik again!
Lastly, I got to experience the mud wrap. The team at Champneys certainly kept the best until last, as this was my favourite treatment of the day. I lay on the bed while the therapist spread mud all over my body with a brush and then wrapped me up like a cocoon using warm blankets. I felt like I was floating and in deep meditation. Sadly it was over too soon, and I had to wash all the mud off now it had penetrated my skin…my silky soft skin felt like it had returned from pre-baby days. Bliss.
I still can't believe that a "Detox and Wellness Centre" can bring so much calm and stillness into the body and mind. I felt truly relaxed yet energised for the rest of the day. The Centre isn't somewhere you need to spend the whole day if you don't have the time, even just three hours will transform you. I enjoyed the last few moments in the stillness of my mind while having a lovely green juice, and then I returned home to the chaos of my two-year-old - but then again, I wouldn't change that particular chaos for the world. I can't wait to return to Champneys Detox and Wellness Spa. Something tells me it will be the perfect spa getaway after the Christmas indulge! *clicks online* That's me sorted… now does that mean I can have that extra mince pie? @champneys @thalgouk @champneysspas #wellnesswednesdays