Friday, 16 April 2010

Review: Nougat Spa, Notting Hill

When Wahanda ran a MobDeal to the tune of £100 worth of treatments at Nougat Spa for the tiny price of £30, I whipped my credit card out immediately, as did 280 other people, according to the girls at the spa.  I also rang my Mum and instructed her to bag the deal, and this week we used our vouchers up as part of a very lovely girls day out.

Set in Notting Hill, amongst cute (and no doubt expensive) boutiques from the likes of Nanette Lepore and Aesop, the Nougat store is a whimsical, pretty space.  Upstairs, the brands body care products are displayed alongside a selection of their clothes, with a manicure station to one side.  Downstairs is the business end of the spa, containing two treatment rooms and space for two pedicure stations.

We opted for Crystal Clear microdermabrasion facials with lifting masks (a separate review will be forthcoming), pristine pedicures, and a quick file and paint for my Mum.  My treatments fell just beneath the £100 threshold, and my Mum had a mere £10 to pay to secure the extra nail servicing.  After the usual form filling, we were led downstairs, offered drinks, and installed in our respective treatment areas. 

I went into a moodily lit, cosy treatment room, with the ever present relaxing music.  The therapist stayed in the room as I disrobed, which I found a little bit strange as I've always been left alone to strip down and hide under a towel.  Once I was comfortably settled on a treatment bed, the therapist was the perfect balance between chatty and quiet - she answered all my questions and was very friendly, but as soon as I fell silent, she did too.  I was glad that the facial I had chosen was more results driven than relaxing, as I could fairly clearly hear my Mum talking to her therapist at the pedicure station outside the room.  That didn't stop me from falling asleep during the mask-and-massage stage of the treatment, though!

After my facial, I had a Leighton Denny pedicure, administered by the same therapist.  I was somewhat surprised that the pedicure area, at the bottom of the stairs, was so small - two stations could be shoehorned in, but once in place, you'd have to climb across the comfy leather chairs to get back up the stairs.  As for the pedicure itself, it was fairly standard, finishing off with a very precise application of polish.  Again, I felt that the therapist was a perfect mix of chatty and quiet, and I didn't feel I had to chat to her as she massaged, scrubbed and painted. 

All in all, Nougat spa is a very cosy space and isn't quite as luxe as other spas, which offer larger treatment rooms, and soundproofing.  They have, however, made good use of the space available, and despite the compactness, you'll still have a relaxing visit.  The therapists were the key ingredient in an enjoyable afternoon, being friendly and genuinely warm, remembering our names and being generally smiley and helpful without a sense of detachment.  While this isn't the place to go if you're looking for deep relaxation and utter peace and quiet, I would recommend a visit if you're looking for a functional, enjoyable treatment in a central, boutique location.

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