Dramatic floor to ceiling windows overlook the unspoilt Watergate Bay with miles and miles of golden sands. A few surfers, a handful of dog walkers and a noisy group of seagulls arguing over a piece of fish were the only beach occupants on this rather overcast summer’s day. Inside, the squishy sofas, daily papers and a cappuccino beckon and may persuade you to wend away an hour or two in this inviting place.
The Watergate Bay Hotel has recently opened this new downstairs area or ‘active relaxation space’, with 25m swimming pool, gym, treatment rooms and café/bar. Although it’s below the main restaurant areas of the hotel itself, it is actually flooded with natural light. So often, the gym or spa is confined to the bowels of a hotel, so can feel quite dark and claustrophobic, but here it’s fresh and welcoming, with light wooden floor and pale co-ordinated upholstery. Only resident hotel guests may access the area or those using the other facilities, so it feels exclusive.
The spa offers a wide range of treatments. There is a waiting area with herbal teas or chilled water and a selection of magazines to read. Jessica offered me a choice of oils for my neck, back and shoulder massage. I chose relaxing lavender, but could have opted for refreshing lemon. Jessica used medium pressure and I really felt the benefit of her work. I had recently hurt my back so she concentred on my lower back area. Because the neck is massaged, it is impossible not to get oil in your hair; so be prepared to wash your hair afterwards. I would certainly recommend this massage. I had a brow re-shape as well. Again, the operator was skilled and I was pleased with the result. Prices are competitive; certainly much cheaper than in London or at other smart hotel spas.
The ‘like a ski resort but on the beach’ idea places the Watergate Bay Hotel ahead of the game and this new facility is a welcome addition to an already successful concept.
Watergate Bay , Newquay, UK
Cost standard double room: £££, suite: ££££
Services spa, swimming pool, fitness equipment, near beach, parking, hotel restaurant, hotel bar, pets accepted, internet access, water sports, wheelchair accessible, air-conditioning