Do you remember that tragic tale about when Birdie ran a half marathon? Well, at some painful point during the training for this ordeal, I promised myself the following things:
1. To never, ever, ever do another half marathon again. Ever.
2. To eat whatever I want for a whole week after the run.
3. To get a full body deep tissue muscle knot loosening massage.
Needless to say I managed very well to keep the first two promises (I was so good at the second I extended it for an extra week). The third promise however I was yet to fulfil, furthermore I had an extra special friend of mine to treat to a massage as an (overdue) extra special birthday present.
Not being one to leave the Bush unless I have to (I suffer enough having a job and a boyfriend in N and EC postcodes respectively) I thought I would kill several birds with one stone, thrown just around the corner from my flat at the spa of K West hotel.
Tucked away in the corner between Holland Park Road and Richmond Way upon first sight K West isn’t very “Shepherd’s Bush”. It looks new, contemporary and a little bit flashy. It speaks the same Shepherd's Bush language that Westfield speaks. It would appear that appearances aren't deceiving as the hotel's spa is the recent winner of the"Best Luxury Hotel Spa in the UK at the 2011 World Luxury Spa Awards. It was no surprise, therefore, that the spa treatments weren't the cheapest you'd expect. However, my friend Betty is absolutely worth it and would be money worth spent if it meant she experienced true relaxation. As I shared my credit card details with K West it was of greater importance to me to find out if K West was worth it?
Because I've had to break the review into two parts I will be kind and give away the ending. It is. Very much so. Betty and I shared a wonderful day in a wonderful space in wonderful Shepherd's Bush.
After a slow breakfast of tea, croissants and a gossip, Betty and I arrived at K West late morning on a Saturday. It appeared that our arrival corresponded with "check out o’clock" as teems of people were occupying the lobby and reception area, as well as many others enjoying coffee in the adjoining K Bar.
Betty and I made our way straight up to the first floor to K Spa (are you noticing what I’m noticing? oK, good). The spa is extensive, as are the range of treatments. Trying to pick for Betty was near impossible (I wanted it to be a surprise) but the Spa Manager had guided me through the maze of massages when we’d spoken earlier that week and I chose the impressively sounding "Muscle Ease Elixir". This is K Spa’s latest signature treatment, which according to the Manager people come from all over the country to experience. That sounded good enough for my Betty and as per my promise to myself I booked in my 60 minutes of
pain deep tissue massage feeling all those knots tighten in preparation.
So back to the spa. Betty and I were greeted very warmly by a female staff member who showed us to the changing rooms and gave us more information about the spa than I could take in. I think this was because I was so surprised how many treatment rooms and sections to the spa there was; it really is vast. I’m used to hotel spas consisting little more than a jacuzzi and a unisex-please-let-the-men-not-be-naked sauna. K Spa appears to fill virtually whole first floor. I couldn’t wait to explore the wet spa facilities after our treatment. To prepare for our day we were given locker keys, a key card pass to that area as well as a robe, flip-flops and more soft white towels than I could count.
In our robes and one size fits all flip-flops (though they were actually so big we both evolved into walking like we were wearing flippers to keep them on) we walked back up towards the reception and waited in the “Treatment Waiting Room” where we joined the special club of other robe wearers awaiting their treatment givers. With refreshments on offer and reclining chairs to lie in, I felt relaxed just being in a robe and nearly horizontal.
It was at this stage I was starting to regret choosing the deep tissue massage. I was relaxed and cosy in my white robe; why go and ruin it all by having my poor sore tired muscles poked and prodded? I had little time to dwell on this as Betty and I were beckoned into two separate consultation rooms.
To be continued...