A magical connection has always existed between women and stones from mother nature. When we’re not busy adorning ourselves with her gems and jewels, it seems we love nothing more than using her special rocks and stones to beautify ourselves.
Many ancient civilisations such as the Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans used gemstones for healing by making them into powders and elixirs, or just placing them on their body during rituals. This ancient knowledge has been passed down to our present day and with the popularity of holistic health, the use of stones is once again making its way back into modern life.
In fact, nowadays spas up and down the country are offering treatments that incorporate these special stones to relieve stress and promote a sense of well being. Some weird and wonderful treatments taking the beauty world by storm include gem facials using rose quartz and amethyst, as well as crystal wand massages. Despite various fads, the most popular treatment that has stood the test of time is a traditional hot stone massage.
The Pavilion Spa at prestigious Cliveden House in Berkshire has taken this traditional massage to another level and developing the Volcanic Thermal Stones Body Ritual.
The treatment uses heated black basalt stones, which retain the heat, and help ease muscular aches and pains. The experience is designed to work on the body’s energy channels by using these stones to massage the body and release deep seated tension and is described as an “holistic and energising therapy for the mind, body and spirit.”
But the reality is that before a single stone has even touched your body, the sheer beauty of the Cliveden estate will help transport you to a relaxed state. Your mind will leave all it’s worries at the door as soon as you drive through the 376 acres of immaculately maintained Nation Trust gardens, leading up to the majestic Fountain Of Love and jaw droppingly beautiful Cliveden House.
The spa is tucked away inside a walled garden boasting an outdoor pool and hot tub. It actually feels like you’re lazing around in the south of Italy and not leafy Berkshire.
The treatment itself begins with the therapist placing the heated stones along the spine before starting the massage. This is to centre your energy and the process is repeated on each area of the body before it’s massaged. She then massages the back, shoulders, legs, arms, and feet.
Many people shy away from having a hot stone massage because they worry the stones will be rough and boiling hot. Nothing could be further from the truth. The stones are super smooth and honestly I couldn’t tell that the therapist was using them. It just felt like it was an extension of her hands. Also the stones are temperature controlled to match your tolerance levels so it never feels painful.
It is however an intense treatment and often feel like a deep tissue massage which really gets into all your nooks and crannies. It’s also a very long treatment lasting 80 minutes but the time flies by, especially when you’re feeling so relaxed. In fact I felt so relaxed I wanted to snooze in the treatment room.
After the experience, I lounged around on the indoor sun loungers, reading magazines and over looking the indoors pool and hot tub. A lot of Cliveden’s spa packages also allow guests to dine inside its Club Room, which has been converted from the Duke of Westminster’s personal stables.
The room is full of humorous touches which include bar stools made of saddles. This would be great for an elegant pre-wedding hen do or as a couple’s romantic getaway.
That evening, I had one of the best nights sleep that I’ve had in a long time. I felt energised and relaxed so I would highly recommend it.
Cliveden Pavilion Spa, Taplow, Berkshire, SL6 0JF. Call 01628 668561 or email firstname.lastname@example.org or log on www.clivedenhouse.co.uk for more information. The treatment costs £120 for 80 minutes.