Beauty review - Hot Lava Shell Face and Body Ritual, The Spa at Hale Country Club

Amanda Griffiths visits The Spa at Hale Country Club and finds it's the perfect antidote to the weather outside

There’s a chill in the air, winter is definitely on its way. As I drive to The Spa at Hale Country Club, the winter sunshine is desperately trying to break through the rain clouds, but I’m not concerned. I’m booked in for the Hot Lava Shell Face and Body Ritual so I’m pretty sure that I’m going to warm up fairly soon.

The spa only opened in June this year; the sparkling, contemporary interior is soothing and calming but not clinical as some contemporary d�cor can be. With about half an hour before my treatment I decide to forgo a swim in the pool (indoor or outdoor) and indulge in a truly warm pampering session in the spa’s thermal suite.

Closing my locker door, (a padded leather affair that oozes luxury) in the changing room I head upstairs dressed in soft robe and slippers, via a poolside lift. I head first for the Jacuzzi and sit back, relaxing in the warm water, while I take a look at where to go next. There’s a button on the opposite wall which slides open a door in the Jacuzzi and allows you to head into the open air, where you can marvel at the views over the fields while still surrounded by bubbles.

The Zen steam room starts calling me and I head inside to find, not your bog standard square steam room, but one with three curved alcoves – a nice touch I think. After a while I head into the salt cave next door before I take a trip to the herbal sauna. As I step inside there’s a citrusy smell in the air and a wall of heat I haven’t felt since on holiday in Australia years ago hits me. I love it!

I could have stayed here for hours, but aware my treatment time was getting nearer I headed back to prepare myself. If you’ve enjoyed hot stone treatments in the past you’ll love this version. In fact I’d recommend everyone try this.

My therapist Charlotte began by talking me through the treatment as my feet were soaked in a bowl of warm water and we chose the oils to use.Covered by thick towels and duvet on the heated treatment bed the Hot Lava Shell Face and Body Ritual began. Lava shells are used in the same way as hot stones, but they retain their heat for longer. Charlotte used their smooth sides to massage my arms and legs before turning me over to work on my back, the heat penetrating deeply into my muscles which quite frankly were soaking this up like there was no tomorrow.

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Then it was time for the facial. Charlotte had already performed a first cleanse on my skin before the massage. She’d also used a special lamp to highlight any problem areas on my skin to make sure the facial was tailored to my specific needs. This, she explained is done at the beginning of the treatment so as not to disturb you mid-way through as the lamp is quite bright.

Two hours later (and two hours too soon) it was all over. I felt relaxed, warm and content and headed out for a light lunch before taking my book and relaxing on the curvy heated sun beds overlooking the Jacuzzi, the winter sunshine bouncing off the glass windows and roof. A perfect end, to a perfect warming treat this winter.

The Hot Lava Shell Face and Body Ritual costs �165 and lasts for two hours. The Spa at Hale Country Club, Clay Lane, Hale, Cheshire, WA15 7AF, 0161 904 5930