Cart is empty
There’s no doubt about it, most Londoners could use some time out. Our fast-paced lifestyles which make the city so vibrant can often leave residents feeling a little less so, as we constantly strive for that ever-elusive work-life balance. Yet among the crowds and concrete, it is possible to find pockets of serenity. Urban spas and clinics can provide some much needed R&R, whether you’re after some pre-party pampering or a more spiritual experience. SUITCASE picks out the city’s best offerings.
The luxe one: Four Seasons spa
Situated on the 10th floor and with beautiful vistas of Hyde Park and the city skyline, the award-winning spa at Four Seasons is a beautifully designed haven, away from the hustle and bustle of Knightsbridge below. Open from 6.30AM until 10PM, there’s plenty of time to fit in a treatment before or after work – but we recommend booking a day package so you can make the most of the facilities. The spa includes nine treatment rooms, each offering dramatic floor-to-ceiling views and an individual relaxation pod, as well as separate men’s and women’s sauna, steam rooms and vitality pools. For the ultimate indulgence, book out the Sky suite, an ultra-luxurious double suite allowing couples or friends to enjoy private treatments together. A highlight is the Omorovicza Blue Diamond Facial, which combines traditional Hungarian spa methods with modern science to help revitalise, tone and tighten ageing or dull skin.
The medi one: Eden Skin Clinic
With two locations in west London, the Eden Skin Clinic specialises in non-invasive aesthetic treatments – put simply, they achieve dramatic effects without surgery. In a clean, bright setting, founder Lorraine Scrivener and her carefully curated team offer a range of treatments from hair removal to facials, massages, botox and fillers. Try the Venus Freeze, a skin-tightening and wrinkle-reducing treatment which uses state-of-the-art technology on the face and body to naturally contour and rejuvenate the skin. Look no further for a skin transformation, just in time for party season.
The problem-solver: Aesop
Cult skincare brand Aesop will probably be well-known to those with problematic skin. The naturally active range of products in chic brown UV resistant packaging has won many fans for it’s minimum fuss maximum results approach, and the brand’s acclaimed facial treatments are no different. Available exclusively in the treatment space at the Richmond store, a beautifully renovated Georgian townhouse near the green, qualified Aesop therapists offer six signature treatments, each designed to solve a different skin problem. There’s the ‘lactate surge’ for pigmented or blemish prone skin; ‘asorbic action’ for dull or patchy skin; and ‘skin quench’ for dry or dehydrated skin to name but a few – you’re bound to find something to suit your needs.
The affordable one: The Porchester Spa
Something of a west London institution, what this place lacks in glamour it makes up for in character and authenticity. Situated in an original 1920’s bath house, with high, arched ceilings and green-and-white tiles, the spa contains a full size swimming pool, plunge pool, steam room, sauna and various treatment rooms offering simple services such as scrubs and hot-towel treatments. Most days are single sex, with men having access on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays, while women are invited on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Sunday Mornings. Sunday afternoons are mixed, so you can enjoy the facilities with a partner. Prices are very reasonable – but be warned, you won’t find any scented candles or soothing music here. For no-frills relaxation however, it doesn’t get much better.
The hangover cure: Grace at Belgravia
It’s easy to burn the wick at both ends in London. Grace, a female members club and spa popular amongst some of the city’s party animals, is adept at dealing with even the most brutal of hangovers. As well as their ‘cleanse me’ spa package, described as as the ‘essential one day detox experience’, Grace has a gym, so you can work off last night’s indulgences, and a restaurant – which hosts a ‘Grace detox brunch’ every Sunday – complete with bottomless juices. If you’re truly burned out, Grace also houses a medical and wellbeing centre with a qualified GP, dedicated to getting you back on your feet – and back in your dancing shoes
The speedy one: Cowshed
Cowshed, the Soho House-owned spa and beauty chain, has branches all over town, making it one of the most convenient places to get pampered. Each spa is kitted out in their famous shabby chic style, with some of the friendliest staff in the capital, and a small but perfectly formed selection of treatments and packages, some as short as 30 minutes. We recommend treating yourself and a friend to the ‘relax and rejuvenate’ package at the Shoreditch House location, followed by dinner downstairs at Pizza East, for the ultimate indulgent weeknight.
The one-stop shop: 58 South Molton Street
Situated just moments away from the hustle and bustle of Oxford Street, 58 South Molton Street is a welcome oasis of calm. From the moment you enter the centre – which rents out space to a carefully selected group of therapists and practitioners – you’re welcomed by a waft of 58’s signature fragrance and the comforting atmosphere. Depending on the day, you can find psychotherapists, acupuncturists, facialists, nutritionists and much more, all under the same roof. Look out for Niroshini and Azure Beauty – both tried and tested SUITCASE favourites. Niroshini is a modern take on acupuncture created by Melissa Day, who focuses on how mind, body and spirit are all interlinked in the belief that “if you’re feeling well on the inside, it’s going to show on the outside”. With that in mind, she creates bespoke treatments for her clients using a combination of acupuncture, lymphatic drainage, massage and Reiki, to ensure you leave feeling and looking rejuvenated. Meanwhile Azure Beauty, created by experienced facialists Katharine and Jenna, is a combination of luxurious skincare products and tailor-made treatments that will leave your skin looking the best it’s ever looked.
The sensual one: Agua
Restore yourself in the luxurious setting of the Agua spa in Soho’s Sanderson Hotel. Relax and enjoy the spa’s cloud-like aesthetic on a meditation bed. The indulgent treatments here include the Natura Bissé diamond multi-sensorial experience, a facial perfect for winter skin damage. Afterwards, why not head to the hotel’s Mad Hatter’s afternoon tea for quirky food and a fun atmosphere.
You May Also Like
You know how you have that one incredible friend who knows their city inside out? That’s us. We take the world’s most dynamic destinations, hand-pick the best bits and give them to you in one place. This is the kind of guide that you don’t need to run by a local – it was written by one. Eat your heart out, shop until you drop, drink like a fish, dance your socks off, sleep – then repeat.
Embrace the adventurous appetite of the next generation with an annual subscription. SUITCASE Magazine challenges travel perceptions with thought-provoking photo journals, city guides and articles by award-winning international writers.
We'll tell you where you can find the perfect boutique hotel in Paris for under £150, if you tell us about the best dive bar in your city. Deal? Share your stories and photos with #SUITCASEtravels.