For some unknown reason, I’m getting less sleep now I’m unemployed than I ever did with a full-time job and a commute 90-minute either side. The truth is I’ve been exhausted recently, and seeing as it was my mum’s birthday last week I decided to book us in for a little spa day at the Ajala Spa.
Of course, I can't speak for the men's but, being as, shall we say, particular as I am, the women's changing room was perfect for me.
There's usually shower gel and shampoo in most gyms, spas and leisure centres, and the hairdryer / straightener (GHDs if you're lucky!) combo in front of the mirror, but everything else you could possibly have needed, and were likely to forget, had already been thought about as well. And I mean: cotton pads, cotton balls, cleanser, toner, face cream, body cream and cotton buds!
For someone like me, who usually packs with a list and still forgets things they deem to be essential, this was heaven as I didn't have to throw everything out of my bag hoping to find whatever I could have been looking for.
I'm not usually one for swimming - partially because I hate getting my hair wet but mostly because I tend to feel like I can't get the smell of chlorine off of me when I come out the pool that being said I genuinely couldn't resist going in.
Okay so the "heated" pool was pretty much the same temperature as any indoor ones I've been in, which really wasn't warm, but it was lacking the over-powering smell of chlorine associated with a lot of gyms and leisure centres, and had a zen waterfall at the end as well!
There was also a leisure lane sectioned off that was wide enough for two people to comfortably do lengths without even splashing each other and although it's only 18m long and 1.2m at any point, it did feel like more of a leisurely swim than a workout, which for a spa day is really how I want it to be.
I know in my current financial situation I could be making better use of any money I have but I live outside my means, and sometimes a girl needs to treat herself, and her mum, so as long as we enjoyed it, it was always going to be worth it.
As I mentioned before, there’s an 18m pool with a Zen waterfall but other facilities include Jacuzzi, Sauna, Steam room, Hammam (Turkish bath), Laconium (a good alternative for anyone who finds the sauna too hot), Tepidarium (which provides the constant but pleasant feeling of radiant heat) and Zen Sun Therapy Lounge. And there is also a range of treatments, including: waxing, massages, facials and pedicures.
Heads up: If you’re staying at the hotel, access to the Ajala Spa is complimentary and the lift from the rooms goes straight down so you don’t have to walk around the hotel in a dressing gown hoping to avoid any awkward moments!
If not, there's still access directly from the street and the spa is open from early to late every day, including bank holidays so there's always a chance to go - although going on a Sunday made for a very quiet day probably because people were going to work the next day.