By S. S. Fair
London hums with activity around-the-clock, but with the 2012 Olympics fast approaching, and preparations for the Queen's Diamond Jubilee well underway, the city is buzzing at breakneck speed. Massive urban facelifts mean severe disruptions on the city streets, but it's all for good cause: Gold medals and the Crown Jewels.
It makes us tired even considering that Queen Elizabeth II has been continuously employed for 60 years, with no retirement in sight. If you're planning a visit to London during these pre-event makeovers, you might get tired, too. If so, head for some R & R at these noteworthy London spas, where aromatherapy massages and facials culminating in sprinklings of diamond dust will have you back on the Piccadilly Circus circuit—or wherever else strikes your fancy—in a rejuvenated jiffy.
Carol Joy is a UK luxury skin care brand offering diamond dust in some of its creams. You'll find its spa at Coworth Park, 20 minutes or so from Heathrow, and miles away from the teeming flux of London. Coworth's been aptly dubbed an eco-luxury spa: Housed in its own building—a buggy ride away from the adjacent hotel and private cottages—Coworth Spa sits on 240 acres of pristine greenery. The spa has eight spacious treatment rooms, plus a heated swimming pool on the lower floor that pipes underwater music as you paddle away. Their luxury Diamond facial with light microdermabrasion is a girl's (or guy's) best friend. And while at Coworth, do indulge in some of the best food in the British Isles (you can diet tomorrow).
The Dorchester Collection owns Coworth Park, as well as the iconic Dorchester Hotel on Park Lane. The Dorchester Spa is its basement retreat done up 30s Deco-style, where the facials and massages hit new heights in poshness. No amenities have been spared, and the spa menu allows for bespoke treatments to fit your special needs. So make room for a Rose Cocoon exfoliation and massage, or a Lavender Crush body treatment in the hushed atmosphere of privilege. If there's time, a caviar mani and pedi in the white-on-white salon is a singular experience.
NYR Organic Beauty Spa
King's Road used to be the hippest of hip streets in a fashion-obsessed city; it was pure rock-and-roll, over-the-top chic. Now it's mainly a strip of international brands, but in their midst is NYR Organic Beauty Spa, a sliver of heaven with two treatment rooms using the cobalt-blue bottled, made-in-Britain Neal’s Yard skin care products. More ways to get that aristocratic English Rose complexion: NYR's Pure Radiance Wild Rose Facial or Damask Rose facial. We've found that simply standing in the store for a few minutes, breathing the herbally infused air, is all it takes for an instant resuscitation.
Four Seasons Spa
From My Fair Lady to a Mayfair lady: at the Four Seasons Spa, a rooftop retreat on Old Park Lane in Mayfair, boasts the most spectacular views of London from its 10th floor aerie: see The London Eye, Westminster Abbey, the Gherkin, and Big Ben, while sporting a plush bathrobe. Indulge in a Rose Crystal Lymphatic Facial with The Organic Pharmacy products, or a Golden Glow body treatment with the outstanding Omorovicza skin care line from Hungary, with ylang-ylang oils enriched with shimmering gold particles.
Thinking of a trip to London?
For up-to-the-minute hotel and restaurant recommendations, plus the best planning advice, check out our online London Travel Guide.
Photo Credit: courtesy Dorchester Spa