Spa-ing with a teenager: 5 things you need to know…
When we dream of spa-ing, hormonal teenagers rarely feature. In fact, many parents book a spa to escape the responsibility of parenthood, if only for a few hours (sorry kids). But when my 15-year-old step-son mentioned that he ‘quite fancied a massage’ it piqued my interest: could I really spa with a teen in tow?
So straight from the school pick-up, we hot-footed up the M3 to B Spa at Brooklands Hotel in Weybridge to find out.
We booked in for Little Miss Piece of Heaven Spa Package (£82.50, 4pm–7pm), which works equally well for male teens and includes a 25-minute Little Miss Vinosource Facial, an Express D-Vine facial, traditional Cream Tea and allocated time in the outdoor hot tub, Sunlight Therapy Room and the Meditation Room.
Whilst all teenagers are different, here’s a few things I learned about spa-ing with one…
It’s all about the food…
Our first stop was the 1907 bar, just off the impressive lobby. The glamorous bar – with its honed granite top, leather seats and giant chrome propellers – felt quite grown-up, but the down-to-earth staff made us feel at ease. We’d booked a pre-spa Cream Tea on arrival; the teen happily scoffed scones with clotted cream and lashings of lemon curd (don’t knock it until you try it). I merrily sipped my glass of Prosecco; the teen slurped his raspberry and mint-inspired mocktail looking highly impressed. So far, so good.
It’s worth noting that post-spa, the teen could well be hungry… again. So, in true Gen-Z-fashion, we ordered 17 pieces of sushi and six chicken gyozas to be Deliveroo-ed to the house in time for his arrival at home. Next time, I’d swap the Cream Tea for the dinner menu - or go the whole hog and have both.
Treatments can be a little daunting for first-timers
Post-feasting, we took the lift up to the third floor to find BSpa. After filling in our consultation forms and getting into our robes, the teen looked a little nervous. When I asked what he was worried about, he replied: ‘being touched by a stranger.’ Fair point. Thankfully his therapist, Nicola, was lovely and reassuring, continually checking in with him during his treatment. The dual treatment room also put his mind a rest – although you may not fully switch off like you would a solo treatment.
The Caudalie Vinosource Facial got the thumbs up, too. Tailored to meet the needs of typical teen skin, the express treatment cleansed, deeply exfoliated and included a customised mask. The teen loved how the products felt on his skin and raved about the hand massage. He’s fully on-board with the cleanse and tone routine recommended by Nicola; another life lesson in the bag.
The hot tub is a clear winner
He may have spent half the time laughing at the air bubbles in his swim shorts but the hot tub was a hit. With views over the Mercedes-Benz World track we bubbled away under the night sky, trying out all the different jets. No phones here either – so you have a very small window to become interesting.
Horizontal chilling, not so much…
I was sure the light-filled Sun Therapy room would be a winner; it’s the closest thing we’ve had to a holiday for a while. The six sunlight simulators replicate natural sunlight (with minimal UVA & UBV nasties) while the visible light and infrared heat help transport you - with a little imagination - to a tropical Island.
With the promise of a boosted immune system and ease of joint pain, I was sold. Other benefits include increased energy and brightened mood – perfect for an angst-ridden, exam-stressed teen, right? Not one that gets bored easily, it would seem. While I was toasting on the slick, white loungers admiring the beachside backdrop and giant driftwood sculptures; the teen was Snapchatting his friends and questioning the merits of light box therapy. The colour-changing LED lit Meditation room faired equally – although he did love the novelty of the heated water beds.
Spa-ing is bonding
The spa offers a rare chance to spend some one-on-one time with your teenager, leave the frenzied world outside and just chill together. We talked mock exams, travel plans and I even got the inside edge on his new love interest.
So, it seems spa-ing goes beyond the bubbles and the fancy treatments: sometimes it’s just about carving out a little, precious time with your teen – before they start ignoring you again…