With its lovely Edwardian façade and imposing opening courtyard, the recently renovated Rosewood London could easily double-up as a convincing backdrop for a glossy period drama: you’ll arrive feeling like you should have travelled via horse-and-carriage, rather than the Central line.
Compared to the cavernous ‘wellbeing centres’ found in many of London’s high-end hotels, the Rosewood’s Sense Spa, tucked neatly into the hotel basement, is definitely on the teenier end of the spectrum. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, though. Instead, this relative compactness makes for an intimate, relaxed atmosphere; as does the understated, Eastern-inspired décor, the soporifically soft lighting and the softly rippling water that winds its way around the central relaxation room (a sleeker-than-average bamboo hut, complete with white loungers, stacks of glossy magazines and fluffy towels). Oh, and the staff are friendly and solicitous too: all in all, the Sense Spa is a natural choice for those who want a five star treatment, but feel a little intimidated by the pomp, ceremony and imposing marble of some of the capital’s better known hotel spas.
Across the spas’ seven private rooms, there’s an impressive array of treatments on offer, from targeted facials (which use ethically-sourced high-performance Sodashi products) to luxurious massages and an array of traditional beauty services. The hour-long Aroma massage (£100) is a real treat: the delicately blended essential oils soon cause any lingering stresses and strains to melt away, while the massage pressure was on the right side of ‘vigorous’ – not so aggressive that you’re in constant fear for your limbs, but not merely an hour of snoozing.
New to the Spa is FACE PLACE, the first satellite of the starlet-favoured LA beauty spot to open outside the US. FACE PLACE offers just one signature treatment, a clinical facial which uses combines extractions with (yikes) a galvanic current to improve the skin’s tone and blast spots and wrinkles.
If you’re short on time and fancy getting away from the madness of the city for a couple of hours, we can’t fault the Sense Spa. Be a bit antisocial and book in solo – this one’s too good to share.