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Perfect Spa Guide



London has a spa to suit every taste and every mood, so if you need some serious R&R, the city has the answers to your prayers. In this perfect spa guide, here are 5 top spas in which to indulge yourself.

Mood: Established in 1977 as the place for dancers from the nearby Royal Ballet School to rest and rejuvenate their tired muscles, today, the Sanctuary is still run by women for women, and its iconic status is reflected in the tranquil surroundings that are a welcome oasis from the hubbub of the city.

Facilities and treatments: The Sanctuary focuses on rest, and its two lounges lull spa-goers into a laidback mood. Other facilities include an exercise pool and an atrium pool, two heat treatment rooms, and a sauna and Jacuzzi. Treatments range from salt scrubs to facials and full-body massages.

Why you’ll love it: Its candlelit, mirrored atrium pool is extraordinarily atmospheric – check out the swing from which Joan Collins famously dangled naked in the film The Stud.

Ushvani, Chelsea

Mood: Named Best Day Spa by both Tatler and Condé Nast Traveler for 2012, Ushvani is a stunning Malaysian inspired spa. Its Georgian exterior evokes the look of a gentlemen’s club, but the interior recreates the calm and tropical surroundings of the Far East.

Facilities and treatments: Five treatment rooms are at the center of Ushvani, while its spa pool and steam room are reserved for women only. The focus of the massage is on Malay and Balinese techniques with five separate therapies available, while body scrubs and facials are restorative treats.

Why you’ll love it: The couple’s suite is three hours of the ultimate spa experience.

Aman Spa at The Connaught

Mood: The Connaught is the epitome of Edwardian elegance, but step inside its Aman Spa and you’re transported to an eastern idyll. The Aman – named the Best Hotel Spa in Tatler’s 2012 guide and Quintessentially Spa of the Year 2011 – is inspired by the aesthetics and meditative cultures of India, China, Thailand, and the Americas.

Facilities and treatments: There is a relaxation area, five treatment rooms, a fitness center, a pool, and a steam room. Treatments range from holistic massages and body treatments to healing therapies and specialist complementary therapies such as reflexology and osteopathy.

Why you’ll love it: The laidback, chilled vibe makes this spa a superb place to get away from it all.

The Berkeley Spa at the Berkeley, Knightsbridge

Mood: The Berkeley is genuinely the last word in luxury, and the perfect place to be pampered and feted in opulent surroundings. Situated on the 7th and 8th floors of the hotel, the spa’s subtle décor evokes a mood of tranquillity and wellbeing that helps you sink into a relaxed state from the moment you arrive.

Facilities and treatments: The Berkeley Spa includes treatment rooms, a fitness center, a sauna and steam room, and an open-top swimming pool with a retractable roof for bad weather days. Treatments focus on skincare, facials, and massage – there’s even a jetlag massage if you’ve just flown in from LA.

Why you’ll love it: The views over Hyde Park from the rooftop pool give spa lovers a more unusual glimpse of London.

Mood: Considered the most luxurious day spa in London, the spa at the Mandarin Oriental is three floors of opulence, an exclusive haven of comfort and rejuvenation.

Facilities and treatments: With eight treatment rooms, a sanitarium and pool, steam room, and gym, the spa at the Mandarin Oriental boasts the finest in facilities. Facials, massages, and aromatherapy are all available as part of the treatments, but guests are encouraged to book time rather than specific rituals so they can decide on the day what suits them best.

Why you’ll love it: The stresses and strains of everyday life will seem a million miles away as you sink into the Mandarin’s lush surroundings.

Whatever kind of treatment you’re seeking, London’s luxury spas provide the perfect place to unwind.