Who knew you could get to Morocco with an Oyster card? Okay, so you won’t exactly find yourself smack dab in the middle of the buzzy North African country – but the award-winning Spa at Dolphin Square could of had us fooled if it wasn’t hidden away in a swanky building complex in Pimlico.
This gloriously lush haven hasn’t spared any details in recreating the time-honoured traditions of hammam culture, where butt-naked Moroccans regularly chillax in steamy communal baths as they wash and scrub all their cares away. Getting your bits out is definitely a no-no here, but everything else is pretty authentic - from the exotic interiors in the changing rooms and chill out areas draped in moody reds, golds and browns, to the zillions of treatments on offer. There’s the standards - manis, pedis, waxes - but that isn’t what you come here for, not when you can get a 23 carat gold facial or the two-hour long, ancient Moroccan oil scalp ritual and an Arabian ceremony. I go for their signature Luxury Hamman cleansing ritual, which ain’t cheap at £82, but it’s just the thing for brides-to-be, mums-to-be, or anyone after some much needed stress relief.
A gorgeous staff member introduces me to Ahmed, who for the next hour, proceeds with a five step treatment which starts with a mint leaf foot soak in the warm and cosy hamman room, followed by a cleansing with delicious-smelling concoctions. He’s clearly a dab hand at this, and makes sure to explain each bit of the process, which also includes lying around doused in the moisturising Rhassoul clay for 15 minutes: guaranteed, you’ll doze off. Before that, there’s two types of scrubs, so if you’ve got sensitive skin, you’ll might want the therapist to ease off the loofah - my skin was quite tingly afterwards. But once you’ve hit the last part where you’re doused in orange blossom rose water before slathered in oil, you’ll feel incredible. Just remember to give yourself a good few hours to get the most out of whatever treatment you go for. There’s the option to hang out in one of the two relaxation rooms afterwards for a quick snooze or a beautiful cup of African spiced tea.