After the success of our London Spa Awards, we decided to review the South West. It’s where our offices live and it’s surrounded by the perfect setting for a spa retreat, as we found out when visiting Serene Sanctuary.
Hidden on the edge of the moors, is a long winding drive way that’s framed by two Narnian lamposts. As the car hobbles down to the entrance you feel the tensions slip away as you’re greeted by an immaculate house that sits amidst a beautifully cobbled driveway.
The first impression is the best and it, quite simply, took my breath away. Most spas concentrate on light, or the lack of, turning their spas into dark supressing places to be. Amanda has executed the opposite, and the gigantic windows dominate the space, meaning every ounce of natural light floods into the spa, making you feel as though you really are out in the open space. It’s mesmerising. The architecture alone is enough for this spa to receive an award as so much attention to detail has been adhered to in order to create the perfect spot for relaxation. As you’re greeted in the hall, it’s difficult not to stare in wonder at the smooth, natural woods, the randomly symmetrical bricks and the inviting, bubbling hot tub outside.
Even the tap produces instant hot water showing no expense has been spared, Amanda really does care about her visitors, even if they’ll be so relaxed they’ll have their eyes closed most of the time they’re there.
The leather loungers rock gently, allowing you to sit back and enjoy the view. I visited at the cusp of autumn, so it was chilly outside but I can imagine how incredible it would be to rock to and fro on the lawn, basking in the strong summer sun. Amanda doesn’t rush you, she lets you know her spa is yours for as long as you’d like. Even if you’re not having a treatment, you can use the facilities at leisure, settle down, read a book, or just listen to the wildlife.
The hot tub is top of the range, again no expense has been spared. It’s maintained to the highest standard, and as you let the tensions bubble away, you can watch the sheep in the neighbouring field. I didn’t experience any dryness after the hot tub, which is unusual for me. I think, like everything at Serene Sanctuary, the chemicals are added in such a precise manner that there’s no risk of irritation or drying of the skin.
Amanda was available at all times but her silent footsteps didn’t encroach on our time at Serene Sanctuary. we’d both booked a massage, and she was happy to fit this in around our mood and stage of relaxation, rather than hurry us to begin. Amanda’s skills as a masseur are second to none and she asked lots of questions to ensure she could deliver a massage that was completely bespoke.
Despite the pristine nature of Serene Sanctuary, I felt instantly at home. I didn’t worry about the wet bikini I left in the sink, as I felt 100% welcome. Amanda is obviously an expert in her field and knows exactly how to promote relaxation and serenity, and she has the ideal venue to compliment her craft. This is one spa we’ll look forward to visiting again and again.
Serene Sanctuary also has a holiday cottage for guests which enjoys the same natural light, tall windows and attention to detail as the spa. We always stay in the hotels and accommodation we review and so we can’t recommend this completely, but on a quick inspection it did look like a lovely place to stay, while being very competitively priced.
Some images are below: