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The Essential Spa Guide

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From the city to the countryside, from pampering experiences to the ultimate golf weekend, ShortList has all your retreat needs covered at home or abroad

FOR HEALTH & WELLBEING: Espa Life at Corinthia Hotel, Whitehall Place, London, SW1

Spanning across four floors and located within a short walk of Westminster, no expense has been spared on this new concept spa, which attempts to fully integrate the luxury spa experience with health and wellbeing. Programmes are personalised and focus on detox, sleep and targeted fitness as well as offering rehabilitation services. The spa’s handpicked team of Life Experts (nutritionists, health professionals and personal trainers) can also offer advice. Treatments from £95; espaonline.co.uk (Image 1)

FOR ANTI-AGEING: Crème de la Mer at Urban Retreat, Harrods, 87 Brompton Rd, London, SW1

With its products renowned for being at the forefront of skin preservation, it’s only fitting that Crème de la Mer facials would be the premium choice for anti-age treatments. Facials start with deep cleansing using pure diamond dust, which massages and prepares the skin for generous doses of the miracle broth — the seaborne elixir and secret behind the brand’s renewing powers — to create a smooth, gleaming complexion. Treatments from £120 for 60 minutes; urbanretreat.co.uk

FOR THE INTERNATIONAL BUSINESSMAN: Spa 1851 at Kiehl’s, 157 East St, New York

After 160 years, Kiehl’s has opened its first full-service spa in New York. Located on the second floor of the Kiehl’s store, the spa delivers a full range of hair, skin and body treatments in its signature apothecary tradition. It also comprises a separate barber’s grooming station, making it the ideal all-in-one stop for the passing traveller looking to recuperate, re-groom and invest in a selection of their favourite Kiehl’s products on the way back to the UK. Spa treatments from $145 (£93); kiehls.com or 1-800-543-4572 for spa enquiries (Image 2)

FOR THE KEEN GOLFER: The Spa by Espa at The Gleneagles Hotel, Auchterarder, Perthshire, PH3

The definitive choice for the golfer in search of an equally impressive spa. Set in 850 acres and home to three Scottish championship courses, guests can host their own golf tournament and unwind at the spa afterwards. The Source Treatment — exclusive to Gleneagles — uses ingredients fresh from local waters and river-washed stones to stimulate reflex points and prepare you for another 18 holes. From £315 per night’s stay in the Classic Room including breakfast and use of the club’s leisure facilities. Spa treatments from £40; gleneagles.com (Image 3)

FOR THE COUNTRY GETAWAY: Cowshed Spa at Babington House, Somerset, BA11

Babington House boasts tennis courts, a cricket pitch and croquet lawn as well as its own gardens and lake. The spa is divided into two areas: Cowshed Active and Cowshed Relax. Exercise and regenerate with a choice of indoor and outdoor swimming pools, while treatments can be taken in the privacy and comfort of your own room or enjoyed with the views of the countryside. From £218 for one night’s stay, massage treatments from £40; cowshedonline.com (Image 4)

FOR THE HOLISTIC EXPERIENCE: Chakra balancing massage, Aveda salons nationwide

This incorporates deep-tissue massage, foot reflexology and guided meditation to unblock ‘trapped energy flow’. The experience concentrates on harmonising the seven chakra centres located in different areas of the body, and re-connecting physical and mental imbalances via massage and meditation. Through the various practices, stress is reduced, muscular tension is relieved and you will see an increase in energy. Treatments from £79 for 60 minutes; 0870-034 2380 (Image 5)

FOR RELAXING & DE-STRESSING: Aromatherapy Associates Boutique and Treatment Rooms, 5 Montpelier St, London, SW7

This newly opened venue is Aromatherapy Associates’ first home dedicating an entire platform to relaxation. The new ‘pack a punch’ menu offers a selection of 45-minute treatments to instantly relieve stress and tension. For a special indulgence, its Ultimate Aromatherapy Experience promises to recharge the body with Swedish and neuromuscular techniques, or alternatively you can switch off completely with the Sleep Deeply treatment to unwind and prepare the body for a peaceful night’s slumber. Treatments from £50; 020-7838 1117

FOR THE CITY WORKER: Gentlemen’s Tonic at Gieves & Hawkes, Savile Row, London, W1

Perfect for the businessman who likes to cut to the chase, this male-only barbershop, with its all-encompassing menu of treatments and services, caters for every need, age range and occasion. Choose from a sports massage, a new beard design or even a father-and-son haircut and finish. Thanks to the partnership with Gieves & Hawkes, it’s suits, style and grooming all under one roof. The lavish surroundings include wood, leather and marble with LCD screens to watch while you wait. As well as treatments, you can also purchase a range of Gentlemen’s Tonic products to keep you looking fresh after you leave. Treatments and services from £15; 020-7432 6441 (Image 6)

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