You’ll find Spa Naturel in its own wing of The Norton Grange Hotel, located eight miles from Manchester City Centre in the Lancashire Countryside with direct links to the M62. The four-star hotel has 81 bedrooms, a conference centre, two restaurants, a spa and a free car park for spa-goers - don't forget to register your car on arrival to avoid a hefty fine.
Shall we spa?
The spa is a health club and day spa in one, with good value treatments making it the perfect choice for groups of friends. After checking in at reception, we were handed a white robe, towel and slippers; asked to complete medical forms and select our lunch. We were then shown through to the changing rooms, where loud pop music was playing.
Half-height wooden lockers require a rather old-fashioned method of entry: a £1 coin. A key on a handy pin ensures that you won’t lose it – or forget the number of your locker.
There’s one private cubicle for changing, two loos and six basic showers with an unidentifiable green liquid in a dispenser on the wall – we could only hope this wasn’t shampoo, conditioner and body wash in one. The theme continued at the wooden vanity area where a white lotion in a dispenser on a wall next to two hairdryers again had us guessing – body cream, perhaps?
The star of the show is undoubtedly the 18-metre heated indoor swimming pool which has windows along one wall allowing the light in. After a few lengths, relax on one of the 18 rattan cushioned loungers with a magazine.
You’ll find the thermal suite – with its semi-circle layout and central showers facilitating a yin-yang journey of hot-cold - through a set of doors.
Heated to 40 degrees, the aroma room could have done with a bit of TLC on our visit, with some broken tiles noticeable. We felt much more at home in the newly refurbished uber steamy menthol scented steam room which was heated to 45 degrees and could comfortably seat eight spa goers at a time.
Cool off in the ice room afterwards - with its cool marble bench, cold shower and ice fountain - before warming up again in the octagon shaped Rock Sauna and the slightly cooler Bio sauna. Our worries melted away in the bubbly hydropool with its countryside views and swan neck fountain for pummelling tight necks and shoulders.
Upstairs you’ll find a beauty suite, treatment rooms, a refreshment area with balcony and bar, a relaxation room and a private mud Rasul chamber which needs to be booked in advance. There’s also a large gym on the ground floor.
We tried the Signature Body Scrub (25mins, £40).
My therapist, Diane, collected me from the refreshment area and led me down the treatment room corridor to one of six recently decorated rooms – ours had a smart royal blue feature wall, white honeycombed textured panels behind the sink area and a shower.
Diane explained the steps of the treatment and then left the room so I could disrobe and get comfortable on the treatment bed, lying face down.
Diane commenced the treatment with Decleor’s 1000 grain body exfoliator which she massaged into my back using short, firm strokes. Her hands then worked vigorously to get the blood pumping, moving from one side of my back to the other and then to the backs of my legs and my feet; this felt ticklish.
Turning onto my back, Diane placed an eye pillow over my eyes and scrubbed the front of my legs, arms neck and décolleté before showing me to the pre-warmed shower to wash the exfoliator off.
Clean, I lay back on the treatment bed so that Diane could finish the treatment with a moisturising body milk, which she applied to my back, legs and arms.
Spa Naturel offers a full range of Decleor facials, massages and body treatments including pre- and post-natal massage, Jessica manicures and pedicures and Made for Life treatments for those living with or beyond cancer.
How did it measure up?
As someone that loves the sunshine, this was the perfect treatment as it removed dead skin cells in preparation for some safe summer sunbathing.
Spot of lunch?
Day spa packages include a light lunch served en robe in the large refreshment area with its copper and teals tones, dark wood furniture, light grey flooring. Floral blinds over French windows lead out to the balcony – a real sun trap on warmer days.
Take a seat at allocated lunch time and you’ll be presented with a bento box - we chose the chicken Caesar wrap which comes with a side salad, creamy coleslaw, some grapes and cheesecake for dessert. Help yourself to hot drinks and water. Fancy a glass of fizz? Head to the bar and pay per glass.
Got all day?
Work up a sweat in the fully equipped gym before cooling down in the pool, then relax in the refreshment area with a coffee and a book before your Decleor treatment.
Short on time?
Some time in the relaxation room - with its twinkling ceiling lights and blue light-up screen submerged in water - is a must after a treatment.