I hope you had a wonderful weekend. Such a shame Monday had to come around because I was really enjoying my weekend this week. If you follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc you will already know what I was doing this weekend, but for those of you who don’t – I have been on a spa break with my beautiful mummy.
We went to a place called “Thorpe Hotel and Spa” (part of Shire Hotels) which is a 4 star rated hotel located in Thorpe Park, Leeds. It is in a great location as it gives you the base you require when exploring the surrounding areas such as: The Yorkshire Dales, Harrogate and York.
Mum and I went with the intention of having a much needed break away from work, college and general stresses of everyday life. We were going to do nothing but relax, eat and have fun.
When we pulled up to the hotel I was pleasantly surprised to find that it looked just a nice as it does on the website. I say this because quite often when looking at a hotel on the internet, it will look beautiful and then upon arrival you realise that the photos were either heavily Photoshopped, taken about ten years ago when it first opened or they were taken from some ridiculous angle.
This has happened to me a few times and it is a big disappointment as the initial appearance of the hotel means a lot to me. It is usually a great indicator of what is to come and of course if a hotel looks neat, tidy and well cared for from the outside, I can usually expect great things from the inside.
With Thorpe looking particularly smart, modern and appealing from the outside, I couldn’t wait to get in and have a look around.
A Warm Welcome…
A roaring open fire wins me over every time and with it being so cold outside I was extremely thankful for the open fire which crackled and blazed away in the reception area of the hotel. We were greeted kindly by a member of staff, given the key to our room which was on the ground floor and then we excitedly hurried off to find it.
The rest of the hotel was true to form. I loved the decor; it was light, airy and classy with a modern twist. No areas were cluttered and the furniture was of a classic style and was well suited to the rest of the furnishings such as the: curtains, carpets, upholstery and light fittings.
I must also say that the hotel was spotless. There were no real signs of wear and everywhere was neat and tidy.
Room for Two…
I know many people will say that a room is just a room and at the end of the day it doesn’t matter what it’s like because you won’t be in it most of the time, but for me the style/quality of a room is extremely important. I like a room that is clean, spacious and well furnished. Luckily, that is exactly what we got.
First things first; testing the bed. It was perfect. I just sunk into the mattress and the pillows were plumped to perfection. The bed linen was of great quality, was clean and had that wonderful fresh feeling which is of course how a hotel bed should be.
The room was user friendly with a separate desk area and lounge/sofa area at the far end of the room. In the middle section of the room were our beds with a bedside table in-between. In front/at the foot of of our beds there was a cabinet which held a Television and housed the fridge, kettle and other bits and pieces that we may have required during our stay.
As well as the built in double wardrobes which had two lovely thick bath robes in it, the bathroom was also situated just near the entrance of our room and it was wonderful. It was neutrally decorated and had both a shower and a bath which is not only perfect as you get the option of how you want to wash, but it is also great if you have kids with you.
Hungry? Well of Course…
All of that driving/travelling and exploring of the hotel had made us hungry and luckily we were just in time for lunch. We headed to the bar area where we ordered some festive filled sandwiches, a coffee and a piece of red velvet cake to share. The food tasted fresh and the coffee was strong just how I like it. All in all it proved to be the prefect light bite to keep us going until dinner when we would be dining in the premier restaurant.
To eat our lunch, we sat in what I would describe as a type of atrium. It was again bright, modern, stylish and airy very much like the rest of the hotel. The waitress that served us was friendly, cheerful and bubbly but unfortunately I didn’t get her name but she served us for breakfast the next day too and was just as lovely then.
Time to Unwind and Relax…
The whole reason that we came to Thorpe Hotel and Spa was so that we could have a lovely relaxing girly weekend of doing not a lot, so it only made sense to book into the Spa (which has recently won “Hotel of the Year” in the White Rose Tourism Awards) for a treatment.
As well as having a muscle condition which means that I suffer with a great deal of pain all over my body, I have also recently been having a lot of problems with my back and shoulder so I thought what better way to soothe those aches than to have what’s called the “Lifesaving Back Treatment“. So I booked myself in for one, as did my mum.
Before we went for our treatment we had about an hour to spare so we headed over to the swimming pool area where there was also a sauna, steam room and whirlpool hot-tub. Now I always feel a little self conscious in swimming pools so I wasn’t very keen on going in, but I tried to put those fears aside so that I could just have a good time. I needn’t have worried for everyone was just going about doing their own thing and all the other people who where there (especially the women) were pleasant and friendly.
The staff were lovely, just like the rest of the staff at the hotel. In fact the kind man behind the swimming pool reception area got us some slippers to wear as we didn’t actually get any in our room. In my opinion it’s those little things that make a stay memorable, so thank you to him for doing that for us.
We spent about an hour in the swimming pool area making use of all the facilities before it was time to head up for our treatment.
A Terrific Treatment…
The spa area was a dream. It was laid out beautifully and I felt instantly calm and relaxed and yes, as you may have guessed, the staff were wonderful.
Upon entering the spa we were shown to the relaxation room which was furnished with an array of wooden beds topped with cushions and towels. There were little matching tables placed around the room also which had flickering tea lights placed on them. The music was soothing and the lighting was low; creating the perfect oasis in which to lie back and relax. In the room there was also coffee making facilities and a cold water dispenser.
It wasn’t long before I was shown through to the treatment room, which much like the rest of the spa area; was extremely tranquil. My therapist was called Rebecca and she was really personable, friendly and certainly made me feel at ease.
I didn’t know what to expect from my massage but I know that I didn’t expect it to be as amazing as it was. The Lifesaving Back Treatment is a stress-relieving back treatment with deep cleansing, body brushing and exfoliation to help stimulate circulation and cell renewal. This is then followed by a luxurious aromatherapy massage and body mask using individually chosen essential oils combined with warmed marine mud. The essential oils that Rebecca chose for me after gaining a bit of background knowledge was the Fitness Bath and Body Oils. They are specifically designed to ease, relax and ward off aches and pains – perfect! Throughout the treatment I loved the fact that hot towels were placed over my back. To be honest I could have lay there all day with hot towels over me, it was amazing.
As well as having a back treatment, Rebecca also massaged my legs which was the absolute cherry on the cake. I felt incredible when she had finished and I will definitely be returning for more.
The Finishing Touch…
We had booked in for dinner after our treatment and I couldn’t wait to try the highly recommended cuisine but first we sat and had a drink in the atrium area. I had a Pimm’s which was given to me in a glass full of wonderful fresh mixed fruit and cucumber, which is just how it should be served. After about half an hour we were shown through to the restaurant, which again had a very calming atmosphere and our waitress couldn’t do enough to help.
I felt like trying something different as I always choose the same sort of food when I eat out, so I went for the aubergine, courgette and tomato filo parcel with mozzarella and yes it was as yummy and totally scrumptious as it sounds. We ordered a side of fries and we finished our meal off with a coffee (the caramel chocolate on the side was heavenly) and some sticky toffee pudding served with ice cream.
The restaurant was quiet for the majority of the evening despite there being plenty of other guests present. The whole place was very peaceful and atmospheric which was ideal for mum and I as we don’t like a lit of noise; especially since we had gone away to have a break from the hustle and bustle.
We finished our evening with a seat which overlooked the pool where we chatted and watched the late night swimmers make the most of the pretty, illuminated leisure facilities.
After such a busy day we were definitely ready for bed but upon returning to our cosy room we hit a slight issue because the heating wouldn’t work and I don’t need to point out how cold it has got over the last week do I. So yes our room was not the warmest. With mum feeling the cold I had no choice but to call reception and soon enough a member of staff turned up at our room with a plug in electric heater. What a star!
All was well again and it wasn’t long before we were all tucked up in bed and fast asleep.
As mentioned previously, we were lucky enough to get the same waitress that we had had the day before at lunch time so that always helps to make you feel at ease. At breakfast we made the most of what was on offer and we tucked into a full English as well as ordering a selection of lovely pastries, some fresh orange and a pot of strong coffee.
It was truly delicious; in fact I could have gone up for seconds but I thought I better save some for the other guests. I loved the scrambled egg so much that I actually asked how they made it. I was surprised to find that hotel scrambled egg is actually made from powdered egg due to the risk of salmonella. I never even knew this but I am going to try and make some myself now.
The Perfect End to a Fabulous Weekend…
We weren’t quite ready to head home so we planned to go out to York for the day to explore the Christmas Market and what a wonderful day we had too. It involved a waiter named Pedro, a visit to Fat Face for some Christmas PJ’s, some MAC makeup and as you may expect, some more cake and coffee.
All in all we had a superb break and I am actually thinking about booking the hotel again for myself, my husband and son after Christmas. We thoroughly enjoyed every minute and we just want to say a huge thank you to the staff who all made our stay extremely enjoyable.
I hope you enjoyed reading my review of Thorpe Hotel and Spa