_Z6A6672Not that long ago, a new spa opened up in town, as part of the new apartment complex where Il Casino once played host to a million marriage proposals. We got invited to come and try them out, and so off to upper Tory Street I went in search of some total relaxation. Oh the sacrifices I make for you, dear reader!

Spring Spa is a sister to East Day Spa, with branches in Auckland, Queenstown and Bali already, and has a slick press release

“Built around the concept of a ‘social’ spa, Spring is designed to allow clients to customise their experience to suit their mood – whether that be by bringing a group of friends, chatting to a neighbour or simply drawing the curtains to relax in solitude. And for those who wish to stay connected, Spring provides clients with iPads or fully-stocked iPods.. “

What this translates to is an bright white open space with comfy looking loungers where you can lie back and have your nails done, or whatever else you’ve chosen and pretend the water they give you is actually a cocktail and you’re actually on a beach.

Actually, that worried me on first look, because I’d chosen to get a massage and a Bliss Peeling Groovy Pod Facial (half hour each and on special for Valentine’s Day at $90, though I was their guest) and I didn’t particularly want a whole bunch of people watching my silly faces as I got massaged. I shouldn’t have worried. Of course they have private rooms too.  

The private rooms are dimly lit, with very solid tables (good to know if you’re as solid as I). If you haven’t had a massage before, I’ll talk you through it. Your beauty therapist will invite you to take off all your clothes except your knickers and will leave the room while you do so. Some places will give you a towel to cover your back with – at Spring Spa they had the softest sheets ever and a lovely thick blanket. It’s like getting into an amazing bed with a hole for your face. I did think I might fall asleep at one stage. The therapist used her whole body weight pushing down on me at times, and I felt like I was going to cry – not because I was in pain, but because things had been very stressful and it was like she was pushing my release buttons. It was a good thing! I loved that there was no need to make awkward small talk, and I appreciated that the music was very Cafe Del Mar instead of the pan pipes or dolphin noises I have experienced in other places. I like my relaxation to be hippy-free.

After that glorious half hour was up, she asked me to turn over so she could could apply my Bliss Peeling Groovy Pod Facial. I got to stay all snuggled up under the lovely sheets while she applied countless lotions and potions to my face and wiped them off. I actually lost count of how many things she used, but by the end my skin was definitely glowing. I was invited to get up slowly and somehow I managed to resist the urge to take an extra nap.

I’ll level with you – I am not someone who particularly cares for their skin. I use supermarket brands and I delight in squeezing things that shouldn’t be squozen, so despite my defunct beauty blog, I am possibly not the best person to knowledgeably review facials. I can tell you though that it was amazingly soothing, smelt great and made me feel good. And that’s what matters, right?

I am more of an expert at receiving massages though, and this was one of the best I’ve ever had. I will definitely return for another some time because this girl has kinks that need work. And also sore parts of my body. And if finances and friends allow, perhaps we’ll go in a group and sit around like fancy people having a social spa experience together. The Hot Milk and Almond Pedicure sounds especially appropriate for this town which runs on lattes.

Spring Spa is a lovely relaxing space, and while it’s not a cheap experience, prices are definitely in line with other spas around town. If you’re looking to treat yo’self and ignore life for a while, it is worth your while.