Finding oneself floating in a heated plunge pool, sipping cold bubbly while inhaling the beautiful fragrance of lavender fields, is really not a tough way to spend a Sunday afternoon. Woodlands Spa and #LekkerPlaces invited me to experience their little sanctuary in Muldersdrift (next to Avianto for those who need a landmark) and I was only too excited to oblige. The pretty Caroline showed me to a comfy couch where I jotted down all my dirty little secrets on the Spa questionnaire from age to cell number to any contagious diseases. (Are you pregnant? Hell, I certainly don’t hope so!)
After parting with my vital statistics, a leisurely stroll around the beautiful river frontage and garden revealed little treasures – pretty relaxation areas, large Buddha statues and meditation deck overlooking the Crocodile River. A row of recliners on the deck and some fantastic reading material makes you want to laze around the entire day. A large jug of chilled water with lemon slices was ready for the taking.
On to the ladies dressing room, where I was shown my locker, stocked with a fluffy white gown and slippers. I stored all my unmentionables and valuables behind lock and key and trotted off to the hydro area. The Spa recommends spending an hour in the hydro area – it relaxes your muscles, making them more receptive for the massage to follow. Trust the people who know!
Now strictly speaking, the correct way of doing this is to shower first, steam for a while, shower again, plunge into the cold pool, followed by the heated pool. This is known as the Kneipp method and the serious Spa folk swear by it – brilliant for blood circulation and longevity. Being the absolute cold-water-coward I am, I opted for the shower, steam room and heated plunge pool.
Queen, my massage therapist/angel, collected me from the Hydro area after an hour and kindly offered a little plastic bag to store my wet swimmie. We took a short stroll to the massage room which simply took my breath away. Imagine a simplistic combination of raw concrete, Cemcrete flooring and loads of glass – the room has two glass walls with a sliding door which opens up onto a deck and the river flowing below. It’s as close as you ever get to nature during a massage unless you are actually brave enough to be nicker-less on a beach or some other exotic location like Hartebeespoort Dam’s mountain top.
The Africology full body massage commenced with a inhalation ritual – a wonderful touch to clean the sinuses and ease breathing while you are lying face down. The treatment was excellent, with the therapist applying the correct pressures and showing great skill. I don’t easily give 10/10 for a massage, but this was spot on.
Still the worldly pleasures did not end. After the massage I had the most beautiful Thai Green curry ever – achieving the most delicate balance between aroma and spicy, while seated on the deck with view of the pond and river in the background. Several couples were seated on the deck looking all glam in their white gowns while snacking on a light lunch. (Compliments to Spa owner Tania Pheiffer and her excellent taste – the complimentary Krone MCC was enjoyed more than you can imagine.)
I left reluctantly, eyes slightly glazed over the by pleasure of the day, and I reminded myself to make a whole day of it next time, or perhaps to join one of the holistic workshops Woodlands Spa is so well known for.
- The massage therapists were outstanding. Their technique and bedside manner is faultless. One of the best massages I’ve had in a while
- This scrumptious lunch was R80 per person – so worth it, and a decent portion size too.
- The R60 min full body massage was R550
- Highly recommended for a day long de-stress (with a holistic angle if you wish)
www.woodlandsspa.co.za | 010 010 5026 | firstname.lastname@example.org