Serene Spy tries an All About The Glow Facial

Mar 7 2023

Serene Spy

On the Road

4 min read

Take me with you…

Dormy House is a handsome rural retreat in The Cotswolds, with 40 rooms and suites, a restaurant (The Garden Room), a gastro pub (The Shed), three lounges with open fires, and a separate spa, The House Spa, that’s housed in a large modern annexe.

Cotswold stone, clean lines, high ceilings and plenty of glass give the spa a light, airy feel. There's a separate car park for spa-goers and bedrooms for overnight spa guests, too.

Shall we spa?

Glass doors open to a large, bright reception with a sofa and two armchairs with footstools for comfort, and shelves of Temple Spa products for browsing.

Two immaculately dressed members of staff greeted us and led us to the impressive Greenhouse, a lounge and dining area with comfy sofas arranged around a striking circular modern fireplace. Floor-to-ceiling doors open onto a vast terrace with stylish furniture.

Decent-sized lockers adorn three walls of the attractive Dressing Room, operated via four-digit code. You'll find a robe, towel and flip-flops inside. Change beside two large leather stools in the centre or hop into the private changing cubicle. Three rain showers each contain Temple Spa products.

Two armchairs and hairdryers make up the mirrored vanity area, with cotton-wool pads, shower caps and plenty of Temple Spa for post-spa preening. 

From here, head through The Thermal Suite to The Bathing Room, where you will find a 16-metre indoor infinity pool with water brimming over a marble plinth onto surrounding white pebbles. Floor-to-ceiling windows overlook an outdoor patio. Relax afterwards on one of 16 comfy loungers - help yourself to fruit-infused water.

In The Thermal Suite, the lavender sauna is backed by a glowing image of a lavender field; recline on one of three double granite seats and allow the lavender-infused steam to envelop you. The four-seater salt-inhalation steam room was perfectly hot and steamy on our visit – press a button for extra salt.

The glass-walled eight-seater juniper sauna, meanwhile, looks out to the pool and was pleasantly fragrant. Cool off with crushed ice from the copper ice fountain or hit "Caribbean storm" on the multi-sensory experience shower.

Outside is a deep hydrotherapy hot tub, a raised stainless steel square pool seating six. Bubble away whilst admiring the feature fire built into the Cotswold stone wall.

The House Spa also has a small gym, a stylish House Spa Champagne Nail Parlour and the latest addition, The Wave Touch Massage Bed.

Treatment talk

We tried the All About The Glow Facial (60mins, £120) followed by a Wave Touch Massage (25mins, £45).

My therapist, Meg, met me in The Greenhouse and led me to a dimly-lit treatment room where she talk me through the stages of the facial before leaving the room to allow me to get comfortable on the treatment bed, lying face up. On returning, Meg spritzed the room with a ‘chill out’ mist.

For the first cleanse, Meg applied a balm which she used as a base for a sonic wave cleansing brush to rid my face of make-up. Skin squeaky clean, Meg smoothed on an active ingredient oxygen peel which fizzed and foamed to resurface and brighten.

Next up, a facial massage across my décolleté and around my shoulders to my face. Leaving the oil on, Meg used a cool sculptor massage tool to lift, reduced puffiness and sculpt.

By the time the paint-on-peel-off mask had dried – thanks, in part, to a blissful head massage – I was fast asleep. Some serum, dots of eye cream, a blob of moisturiser and a slick of lip balm concluded an hour’s facial extravaganza.

For my hands-free massage, Meg led me to another room and instructed me lie on my back on a waterbed in my robe. She then placed a weighted blanket over me, selected a wave setting (maximum), positioned an LED light hood over my face to stimulate collagen and chose a funky beat.

With the LED light on, two water jets began to move methodically from the centre of my body to the sides, and then from my ankles up to my neck - and back down again. This happened five times in 25 minutes. I hopped off feeling weightless.

How did it measure up?

Each product used in the facial smelt divine; my skin looked noticeably brighter and nourished afterwards, too. The Wave Touch machine made me feel like I’d enjoyed a full body massage – in just 25 minutes.

Spot of lunch?

Spa guests can take lunch in their robes in The Greenhouse with its central bar serving hot drinks, smoothies and juices, and menu of plates with names like Naughty & Nice, Nutritional, Sides and Something Sweet. There are plenty of options for vegans and gluten-free guests, too.

We went for Nutritional and tucked into a plate of smoked chalk-streamed trout with sea vegetables and Guinness-infused bread; it was as colourful as it was flavoursome.

Got all day?

Bookend the day in The Greenhouse, beginning with a coffee or smoothie and ending with lunch. In between, head to The Bathing Room for a swim, The Thermal Suite to warm up, outside for a spot of fresh air and the treatment area for a relaxing massage or age-defying facial.

Short on time?

Book the Wave Touch Massage - a full body massage in just 25 minutes - leaving time for a quick swim or lunch.


Serene Spy

7th March 2023

Spy Likes:

Soft fluffy robes, imaginative vegetarian food, products that combine luxury with strong eco credentials and spas which look after their therapists’ wellbeing too.

Spy Dislikes:

Showers that aren't spotless, snootiness and having to get dressed for lunch.

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