Moroccan ambience at The Spa in Dolphin Square!

What a treat to have a visit to a Spa with my daughter (if you read my previous post you will see that my family gave me a Spa treatment for my sixtieth birthday, so I approached this treat with enthusiastic anticipation)

I love the location of this spa, as you can get off at Pimlico station and have a short walk through a rather tasteful area of London, (and I so love ‘posh’) and you can also combine it with a visit to the Tate Britain and catch up on Art and Culture, which I always enjoy doing as a visitor to the city.

My expectations were for the usual spa surroundings, centred around a pool with loungers and tables and plants. I was quite astonished and pleasantly surprised, to be confronted by moroccan lanterns with flickering candles, leading the way to the darkened depths of deep red and dark wood furnishings, a profusion of tassels and moroccan-style patterned tiles and the deep glow of copper and brass.

We filled in our health check forms and were then shown to an anti-chamber, with gorgeous moroccan-style furnishings and lighting, and invited to take a seat, whilst a young lady with a huge copper bowl and kettle introduced us to the moroccan welcoming ritual. She washed our hands, pouring tepid water over them, fronts and backs and dried them off with fluffy towels. We were then left to relax to moroccan music and await the arrival of our therapist.

We were escorted to our lockers and shown the meeting place for the next part of our moroccan cleansing. (Big mistake, always ask what to wear to save embarrassment; we ended up in our bathrobes with only knickers on and had to retreat to don our swimming costumes…..!)

We were then led down a red carpet, edged with flickering candle-lanterns to the darkness of the treatment room! I just so loved the mystery of it all and the earthy, spicy smells were such a contrast to my expectations. We were informed that the ‘hammam’ part of our ‘Moroccan Majorelle’ was about to begin: firstly we were doused with tepid water and then cleansed with ‘Savon Noir’, which is a mixture of crushed olives and olive oil, imbued with eucalyptus, which has anti-bacterial and antiseptic properties, ensuring a deeper cleanse. ( A word of warning: it is difficult to turn over, as you are very slippery, so beware falling off the treatment benches, you gorgeous, young lovelies won’t have a problem!) We relaxed for 10 minutes and imbibed the salts, before they were rubbed off with these brilliant rough mitts. I just loved this bit! Especially on the soles of my feet! AND you get to take your mitt home with you! I have used it every day in the bath! We then showered off and went to relax and have an ‘energy’ sugar snack of dates, and a glass of water in the ‘tepidarium’.

I much preferred the lovely curved benches, which were heated, and found them far more conducive to relaxation, as your spine follows the curve, to the flat treatment beds of the previous room. However, I must say, I haven’t ever had the opportunity to be in a ‘relaxing’ situation with Ruth and, albeit we had lovely moroccan music, the atmosphere was drastically changed by the discovery that, as we moved, the water in our swimsuits were ‘blowing raspberries’….we were in fits of giggles, but I think a good old laugh is helpful to relaxing, and mother and daughter relationships…. we couldn’t stop!)

I JUST LOVED the next bit! I have had quite a lot of different massages: reflexology, hair-dressers ‘Indian head massage’, chiropractic ‘bone-snapping’, physiotherapy work and those languid ‘beauty-massages’, meant to relax you into oblivion. I come from a sort of knowledgeable base so I was going to make sure that my massage was a firm one and got to the specific parts that I needed, so I informed Suzannah of the troublesome areas. She was brilliant. The best massage I have had; she really dug down to break up all the areas of muscle tension, she recognised that I was out of balance, one side of my spine compensating for the weaker side. I felt she was really knowledgeable. I loved the honey face mask ,which she informed me would be cold and sticky before hand, I loved the application of heated cloths to my feet, and the massage of toes and fingers, so important to get it just right.

I had been in two minds whether to have the clay hair treatment; it was a relaxing experience as it was cold and it is quite nice to end with, but then you have to wash it all out in the shower? I think next time I would miss it out and just float away on the magic carpet of smells and relaxation, rather than a rude awakening to showering and drying and hairdryer. If you didn’t have the hair treatment you could just don clothes and have a peppermint tea and approach the tube on a euphoric cloud OR click your fingers for your limo? A wonderful experience altogether, and for me, it was interesting to listen to my daughter’s experience and have the opportunity for the two generations to meet in a memorable occasion.

Thank you to The Spa in Dolphin Square! Well worth it! I left feeling amazing, so relaxed and my skin was glowing and so smooth and soft and my face glowing! Ruth did say, I looked about ten years old but I think she was exaggerating, over the top, Ruth! Maybe twenty? Have a look at their website and get your self a treat! Perhaps your Mum’s birthday pressie? We had a real giggle at both of us in just our knickers and totally hysterical at the squelching, and it’s not often we have an opportunity to have a laugh together. In fact try and remember the last time you had a really good laugh? With your Mum (NOT at your Mum!)

You have got to go on this website! It is brilliant! I am getting worried now that I am going to spend all my spare time just going on my favourite websites! I have decided that a two night stay in on of the apartments in Dolphin Square with spa treatments is well worth the dosh! A Christmas treat!

I had an awful experience last December: it was the last day of term and we were flying off to meet friends in a favourite cotswold hotel. We were on near empty, petrolwise, but decided to catch a garage the next day. We booked into our ‘garden room’, had our meal, with much wine and laughter and lurched over to our rooms way past midnight. Woke up the next morning, and we were snowed in! Some people were having their wedding reception in the hotel and were discussing wearing wellies in the grounds!

We attempted the Fosseway, which is like a roller coaster without deep snow!  Petrol on empty,skidding from side to side, snow still coming down, passing abandoned cars covered to the windows with snow, NIGHTMARE! The snow ploughs weren’t making any difference and cars coming in the opposite direction were swerving their way precariously past us. We ground to a halt at the top of one hill to be told by a passing four by four NOT to go any further as a lorry had jack-knifed across the road! I was amazing! I didn’t scream as we tried to turn around! I didn’t whimper or swear! We tried that old method of laying branches and twigs underneath the wheels! To no Avail! I wouldn’t allow my husband to push, as I love him so, and I had visions of road kill hedgehogs!  A 4 by 4 towed us back to the A40, which was barely navigable, and we limped back to the hotel. We were stuck on the main road, in fact iced in for three days!

I managed to get a really nice hotel, which I can recommend : The Lamb Inn at Burford. The manager was brilliant. Our spirits were lifted when he gave us their BEST suite of rooms. It had a HUGE bathroom with bath in the middle of the room, the usual two washbasins and walk-in shower BUT………. a T V on the wall. I have never been soooo wrinkly! I watched a whole film IN THE BATH. I think it was called ‘The Alium” What a treat! Thankyou Manager of the Lamb, he saved the day!

I really love good hotels, as I have stayed in so many, and at one time I was going to write to Johansens and offer my services, but it was before Tripadvisor! I love reading Tripadvisor but I always book with because I find their website easier and I love their reviews. I have had a cup of coffee, which always makes me as high as a kite and talk or gabble a lot, or ramble if I am writing, so I must sign off. I do so hope that there is still someone out there who is following my posts otherwise I may as well pack in.

Lots of love in these times of no jobs, no prospects, gloom and doom but don’t let the bastards grind you down! You could just put swimsuits on and sit on your kitchen worktops and squelch away!

Lots of Love to you all

Ruth’s Mum



  1. I stayed at the Dolphin Square apartments this June and they were WONDERFUL! Very affordable considering the quality and convenient location. Staff was a pleasure to deal with, even though we had to deal with a time difference and currency exchange (I’m from America). I would absolutely stay there again, especially now that I know the spa is so good!

    1. Dear Katie,
      I also think that you may get the use of the swimming pool if you stay in the apartments. Unfortunately I have a penchant for luxury and I always choose hotels with good-sized pools. It looked big enough to get a swim in (some are like pudding basins and two strokes and you are back where you started! or you meet the couple from the next apartment!)
      Have a wonderful new year
      Best wishes

  2. oooh……….i am so jealous……. The Dolphin Spa sounds gorgeous….it’s my bierthday today (55)…I may put my mney to a Spa treatment!


    Diana xx

    1. Dear Diana,
      If you read my blog on ‘My special birthday treat’ last March I think, I do suggest that we deserve a little luxury every birthday and I soooo wish I had started earlier! Go for it!
      Happy new year and happy birthday.
      Chris xx

  3. I see where Ruth gets her sense of humour!! Sounds like you two had a great time! And what a great idea! My husband and I just moved to Las Vegas last year, so I’ll have to set-up a spa day with my Ma the next time she’s here for a visit!!!
    Love from Vegas,
    Rhonda xox

    1. Dear Rhonda,
      A brilliant idea! Ruth and I had such a laugh and it was much better than going it alone! Lots of fun! All the best for a happy,healthy new year.
      Chris xx

  4. Very nice that you are reviewing spas. Hope that you also will give some views on organic spas. would be interesting to know what you think since you seems to value a health organic living!
    It’s a joy to read your blog, many thanks!

    1. Thankyou for reading my posts. I am back in form for 2012 and am hoping to review more spas as I have a birthday coming up, can’t believe a year has gone by! I feel sure that the past two spas I have tried have been organic but am going to investigate!
      Best wishes for a happy and healthy new year

    1. Dear Catherine, Thankyou for replying. I am up and running again in 2012 and still smiling although I am fast approaching yet another birthday!
      Happy new year and bestwishes for good health.

  5. HI,
    I have been reading AMR for some time now, and I can definitely see where Ruth gets her wit from. Very funny review, also TOO tempting, especially as my husband is watching our spending very closely…. humph.
    I look forward to your future articles. Oh, and happy new year!

    1. Dear Vicki,
      Unfortunately I think I may have passed a few more traits on to Ruth…..a taste for luxury goods, fast cars and only the very best hotels! Oh dear…..

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s