Friday, 8 September 2017

A Weekend Of Relaxation At The West Bay Club & Spa, Isle Of Wight

A few months back, at the beginning of summer I received an email offering myself & Jon the chance to try out a spa break on the Isle Of Wight...the visit would include a stay in a luxury house, spa treatments for both of us, and breakfast and lunch too.

I don't think I have the words to explain how excited both of us were at the thought of this break! The most child-free time we've had in the last four years is an overnight visit to London and even that was a work thing so not exactly relaxing...this sounded like exactly what we needed and we counted down the days throughout the summer...infact every time the kids would drive us a little bit crazy, we'd look at each other and just say "Isle of wight!" became our mantra, our coping mechanism even! turned out that my Mum, our designated and only babysitter, had forgotten that she'd agree to have the kids for us and had taken a booking for her business that weekend meaning she would have to take the kids to Liverpool with her...fine with the babies, but Tyne just wasn't having it at all. 

And so our childfree relaxing break ended up becoming a "Just the three of us" break...we didn't mind too much, it was nice to have some one on one time with him before he started school this week...but when you hear me mention throughout this post that this "Would have been very relaxing"...what I mean is had we not had a very whiney and tantrum prone 4 year old with us!

None of us had ever been to the Isle Of Wight before and I was really intrigued to see what it would be like and how long it would take us to get there.

The West Bay Club & Spa, who were hosting us, arranged our ferry as part of the booking process - something they do for all guests. This is a really lovely additional service as it means there's no hassle involved for you as the customer...everything is taken care of for you.

The drive from Devon to Lymington near Portsmouth was very pleasant and scenic, and for once we arrived exactly on time...the Ferry was easy and efficient when it came to boarding, we simply the drove car on and went upstairs to have a coffee while we sailed to the island.

I found the ferry to be a really relaxing experience...they say the crossing takes 40 minutes but I'm sure it was shorter as we barely had time to finish our coffees and we had arrived!

We docked in Yarmouth, drove off and found the West Bay Club no more than 3 minutes drive away...the reception staff were helpful and we were checked in to our New England style holiday house immediately.

We were staying in The House Of Liz Earle - which was honestly the most perfect venue for this weekend of R & was bright and airy, decorated in a stunning yet simplistic style and with such thorough attention to detail.

Every little thing you could possibly need during your stay was there....a nutri ninja, a nespresso machine (with plenty of pods! And now I want one at home....), a cake tin, a basket full of blankets for snuggling under on the sofa, a great selection of books dotted around the house, an ipod dock, a selection of DVDS to watch...everything had been thought of.

There was a lovely selection of Liz Earle Naturally Active products to use in the bathroom, as well as a gift bag of Liz Earle miniatures to take home which was a lovely treat too.

There was even a selection of Isle Of Wight produce and goodies to get our stay started...herbal teas, Innocent Juices and Smoothies, A fresh loaf, eggs, cheese and preserves...even some kilner jars of muesli! much care and attention to detail.

At the back of the house was a patio area with outside seating....we made a lot of use of this over the course of the weekend as Tyne loved to run around on the large grassy area in front of us and play games, in fact there were lots of children playing games and riding their bikes around - it seemed the perfect place for a family get away.

Tyne was also a big fan of the indoor and outdoor pools, too - there is even a programme of sports and fitness activities for children and grown ups to join in with should they wish - Tyne was a little too young for most of them but he was more than happy to entertain himself with the outdoor pool thanks to the gorgeous weather we had!

We ate lunch in the Bistro on site soon after our arrival - I went for the Halloumi salad and Jon opted for the Club sandwhich with fries. The meals were lovely, and the Bistro was a really relaxing and chilled out environment too.

After lunch, I headed to the Spa for my first treatment...a 90 minute full body massage. Can you imagine...90 minutes of such indulgence?!  The therapist was lovely and took her time to understand what I wanted to get out of the massage experience, the treatment itself was lovely but I have to say...I struggled to switch off and relax into it. Perhaps because of the travelling I'd just done or the fact that my 4 year old had chosen to have a lunch time meltdown and I was worrying about whether he was acting up for his Dad...who knows!..but I'm only mentioning it because...

The next day, after a lovely restful nights sleep in the worlds most comfortable bed!, I returned to the spa for two more treatments...the first of which was a reflexology treatment carried out by Claire. I'd never had reflexology before - the treatment is done by applying pressure to various points on the feet and feels a bit like a foot massage although there is much more to it than that.... I wasn't too sure what to expect from it...after struggling to relax the day before I was worried that the same thing would happen again but as it turns out I had nothing to worry about...

The treatment lasted for 45 minutes and it was honestly THE most relaxing experience of my life. 
I felt myself drifting in and out of consciousness throughout, and once the treatment was over I felt as though I was floating - I was the most relaxed I think I have ever been.

Claire told me that the points of tension had been my hips, and my hypothalamus which is the part of the brain related to sleep - considering that I suffer with insomnia and sleep very badly, I found this really interesting!

I spent a little time in The Little Room Of Calm which is a dedicated relaxation area complete with sauna, steam room, fire & ice showers, a selection of face masks to use and magazines to read....I chose to just lay back, enjoy the relaxing music and was BLISS.

After a while, I was called through for my third and final treatment...a Liz Earle Beautiful Skin facial. 

This was pure luxury and again I left feeling relaxed and refreshed...I cannot recommend these treatments highly enough, they are truly worth every single penny.

Jon had the same treatments, and says he enjoyed the facial most of all - the only difference was that he was never invited to use The Little Room Of Calm but perhaps this is reserved for ladies?

After our day of pampering, we headed off to The Hut...a nearby restaurant recommended to us by the PR lady who looks after West Bay Club...The Hut is located in Freshwater around a 10 minute drive from West Bay Club. 

Now I have to be honest, I am an incredibly fussy diner with a lot of OCD hang ups around animals in restaurants and I usually avoid dog-friendly establishments like the plague - I know I will be in the minority with this but nothing puts me off eating like the presence of an animal, particularly an animal I don't know in a restaurant. I'm scared of dogs, I don't like the smell of them and I can smell it a mile when I realised The Hut was dog friendly I was immediately concerned as it wasn't at all a cheap place to eat and I was unsure if it would be a waste of money for me. I have been known to refuse to eat a bite of a meal if there's a dog around! 

However, although there were indeed 3 dogs present during our meal...I enjoyed it anyway. The restaurant is located right on the beach and is open air in good weather, so there was no issue with any smells and the food was so exquisite that I was far too busy enjoying my meal to worry about the furry friends around!

I did get slightly spooked when a table arrived next to us at the end of our meal with a dog in arms Less than an arms length away from me, it was a little too much for my dog phobia so we skipped dessert but it wasn't a big deal as we were all stuffed anyway.

On our last day, we had a lovely breakfast in the house before heading off to explore the Island a little...unfortunately this was the only day we had rain but we made the most of our time there anyway with a visit to The Needles, which I'll be talking about more on my travel blog Sparkles' Suitcase next week. There was so much  to see on the Isle Of Wight that it was impossible to fit it all in, so we have decided to go back next Summer with the little ones to see more of it.

Despite our little gatecrasher who was somewhat determined to ruin our weekend of relaxation with his tantrums and fournado-ness, we still managed to have a thoroughly relaxing and enjoyable weekend at the beautiful West Bay Club & Spa...and we are absolutely determined to return!

We will have a video all about our stay with a behind the scenes look at the West Bay Club and what we did on the Isle Of Wight going live on my YouTube channel next week, keep an eye on my Facebook page for that!

To find out more about the West Bay Club & Spa  or book your own visit, please visit

*With thanks to West Bay Club & Spa for inviting us to enjoy a complimentary stay and treatments - all words and opinions are 100% my own.
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