Sometimes a good facial in a darkened room with the lights dimmed and harmonious music playing in the background is just what you need. But when the salon is situated in a spa surrounded in the pastoral tranquillity of a country house hotel in one of the most envious places in the UK, it’s not the kind of atmosphere you want to find yourself in. Luckily the spa at Coworth Park, in Ascot, means you don’t have to compromise.
Designed to complement and preserve the natural beauty of it’s surroundings, the eco luxury spa is an architectural wonder. Partially submerged in the landscape, it enjoys the countryside views, and the floor to ceiling windows in the pool make for a sublime swim that brings the outdoor in. The treatment room where I went to have my Carol Joy Luxury Collagen Facial treatment continued with this theme – the room was light, airy with a skylight window, helping to bring natural light in.
Carol Joy London has their flagship salon at The Dorchester Spa in London, as well as facilities at Coworth Park Spa in Berkshire and The Fairmont Monte Carlo in Monaco. Working on the philosophy of beauty from the inside out and outside in, founder Carol Hatton, uses their hero ingredient Golden Millet Oil to promote healthy skin by delaying premature aging and environmental damage.
Following a consultation about my skin with the therapist, my treatment began with the first of no less than nine products to be used on my face and neck. After an initial wipe over, steam from a machine was used to cleanse the skin and impurities. A pure collagen mask infused with serum is then applied to the whole of the face and neck. This, according to my therapist, helps boosts the skin’s collagen production, plumps skin cells and repairs UV damage at cellular level to eliminate signs of fatigue and stress.
Firm circular motions and gentle upwards strokes from the chin up are all done purposely to ensure uplifting of the skin. The therapist, I noticed, paid particular attention to the forehead and the chin area to pull the skin upwards. She explained this was necessary to uplift the skin and regular weekly treatments would help reduce frown lines. Every single area on my face was attended to before the tightening IV Lifting Mask was applied for a youthful finish. It’s no wonder the treatment took 80 minutes! As the mask did it work, my shoulders, arms and hands were massaged to ensure overall relaxation. The result? Definitely softer, delicate, brighter looking skin which I felt no need to cover up with make-up when I went to dine.
If it’s comfort food you are after, then you have to sample the rustic charm of The Barn. It has stunning views of the surrounding countryside, and with stone floors throughout, it’s an ideal place to get nourished if you’ve been busy mountain biking, horse riding, playing tennis or croquet and have muddy boots.
Alfresco dinning directly on the terrace at The Barn is a must especially in the current summer heatwave we’re experiencing. A complimentary glass of champagne is offered pre-dinner to settle you in the mood as well as prepare you for the dinner ahead. The menu boasts seasonal ingredients and local produce throughout. Portions were extremely generous as I found when my well-cooked lamb arrived accompanied by seasonal vegetables. I struggled to finish it despite finding it incredibly tender and delicious. I also wanted to leave room for dessert. The Irish coffee trifle, layered with Dorset mascarpone dark chocolate cappuccino was too tempting to resist.
Coworth Park offers a range of accommodations. The Mansion House offers 30 rooms while the stables and cottages encompasses a further 40 rooms and suites. We stayed in the Cottage Executive Suite and were greeted with a Verve Cliquot bottle of champagne being chilled in a bucket. The two floor open planned cottage has a spacious living room, dining area, wood burning fireplace and patio with a garden. The bedroom and bathroom are located on the first floor with views in three directions from small Wendy-house style windows. A wooden four-poster bed and a copper bath just a few feet away gave the room a very contemporary but modern twist to the room.
For us, it proved difficult to drag ourselves from Coworth Park, but there’s lots to discover in the surrounding areas. The Windsor Great Park is just a short walk from the hotel while Ascot racecourse and Wentworth golf course are just a short drive away. But those wishing to make the most of the country and the great outdoor treats can go horse riding, tennis, croquet and biking in the grounds.
Not feeling active? Then, a gentle stroll in the 240 acres of parkland is definitely for you.