The Beauty Island Sanctuary
Shed your winter self with a pamper at this super spa right opposite Worthing railway station.
If your skin and your mood are suffering from central heating and months without vitamin D, or you just fancy some down time with a couple of friends, I know a pocket day spa in Worthing that will lift your spirits.
The Beauty Island Sanctuary is right opposite Worthing railway station so very handy if, like me, you’re popping in from out of town.
You enter into the reception and smart, bright beauty parlour area – a really large room so you’re not cheek-by-jowl with your neighbours. Here you can get your nails, your hair and make-up done – wedding styling is a speciality. There are also tanning beds and spray tanning facilities elsewhere.
When I visited recently I bypassed all this however and headed straight into the spa area for a bit of pampering, a therapist giving me a helpful show round first. There are individual changing rooms and showers with robes and slippers so no awkward shuffling on and off of your cossie in a communal area for the more prudish among us.
Though The Beauty Island Sanctuary hasn’t got massive destination spa facilities like a swimming pool it does have a relaxing Spa Zone with a spa pool and sauna, where, with the help of an array of magazines and a nearby tea station and fresh fruit platter you could happily while away an hour before or after your treatment. Indeed I got stuck into a novel (and a glass of fizz) between dips in the hydrotherapy pool – which was like a mini massage in itself.
There’s a sense of fun about the experience with changing coloured lights in the pool and I can imagine it would be great for an afternoon with a friend or two, heading off for treatments or pedicures in between. Hen parties are big here.
The treatment rooms themselves are more muted with candles and dark colours that give them an Asian twist. Helpfully your therapist pops into the Spa Zone 10 minutes before your appointment to remind you, so there’s no slippery last minute dash.
For the first time in a spa I was asked on the form beforehand if I had any musical preferences for my treatment and offered the chance to browse a selection.
Having toyed with the idea of requesting thrash metal for a laugh I simply put ‘relaxing’. it was nice to be asked though. I once had a massage to the radio news in Romania featuring comments from Tony Blair and in Malaysia I had a none too relaxing treatment to Rule Britannia from a CD of Last Night of the Proms! (I can only assume the therapist selected from a library of partiotic music tailored to each nationality).
My hour’s treatment at The Beauty Island Sanctuary combined a hot stone massage with a facial. I’d only had a hot stone massage once before and remembered how good it was and I wasn’t disappointed this time around. The added heat as the smooth pebbles were rocked into pressure points seemed to really melt the tension away.
Another touch I liked was having one of the warm stones placed under my neck to keep me relaxed while the therapist moved onto my facial, deftly applying various scrubs, hot towels and creams.
Brand fans will be pleased to know they use CACI and Dermalogica, OPI (love their colours!) and L’Oreal here. They offer packages for brides-to-be from a hair and make up try out and pampering day to a full 12-week series of preparations. Couples, mums-to-be and men (including grooms) are all also catered for.
All sorts of enticing treatments include ‘complete indulgence’ with a gold and caviar facial! The Pamper Day option (£100 weekdays, £115 weekends) includes a choice of two hour-long treatments plus an hour’s use of the spa zone.
After a shower and a quick blast of my wet locks with a hairdryer back in the beauty area, it was great to step straight onto the train afterwards letting someone else do the driving while I kept zoned out a little while longer, nose in a book, fresh faced and with shoulders several centimetres lower than when I arrived.