On the picturesque Cornish coastline, Carbis Bay Hotel has a dramatic spa setting. With pebble-lined walls, white-wash woods and cool, earth furnishings, C-Bay Spa is a serene place for a seaside spa escape. The spa is set over two levels, each with views over the Atlantic Ocean. There's an outdoor pool and hot tub, sauna pod, relaxation lounge and a VIP treatment suite on the beach. The treatment menu uses Voya and Aromatherapy Associates products to deliver a range of holistic and beauty-based spa therapies.
- Single sex facilities
- XXL robes available
- Family swim times
- 15-metre pool
- Sauna pod
- Relaxation lounge
- 2 single treatment rooms (1 with a bath)
- 1 double treatment room
- 1 VIP treatment suite for couples on the beach
- Luxury Sunseeker yacht
- Aromatherapy Associates
- Lava Shells
Our Spa Spy review
The five-star Carbis Bay Hotel & Spa sits proudly above a wide stretch of golden sand in a lovely Cornish bay. As settings go, it's hard to beat.
The whitewashed property cleverly blends old and new. Ornate coving, parquet floors and photos of a bygone era happily give way to a modern white conservatory with large terrace facing the sea. Here, only a few panels of glass separate you from the beach, making this a popular spot to sip something cold and watch the sunset.
The C Bay Spa is in a square, contemporary wooden building which makes the most of the views through floor-to-ceiling windows.
What's on offer?
The stylish reception area has whitewashed walls and turquoise accents giving a fresh, beachy feel. There is a nail bar and several glass stands displaying OPI, Voya and Aromatherapy Associates products.
The small changing rooms have six sage-hued, wooden lockers containing branded robes and flip-flops, together with a navy and white stripy towel, and a bag to take your swimming costume home in. There's one shower behind a frosted-glass door equipped with Aromatherapy Associates shampoo, conditioner and shower gel; open the grey tongue-and-groove door for the toilet.
Pull out one of the padded stools tucked under the bank of lockers and use it to help you change. For post-shower preening, there's a hairdryer on a white wooden plinth and samples of Aromatherapy Associates products to try.
The spa's best facility is a 15-metre free-form outdoor heated pool with incredible beach views. Long enough to swim gentle lengths, it's surrounded by brown rattan loungers with cream cushions and bright yellow Veuve Clicquot-branded umbrellas. It's a perfect spot for soaking up the Cornish sunshine.
Warm up afterwards in the green mosaic-tiled hydro-pool, with its powerful jets whipping up plenty of bubbles; several "seats" and two lie-flat "beds" can accommodate eight spa-goers. More loungers are up a handful of stairs behind the hydro-pool, where a quirky wooden sauna pod and a round wooden pavilion for taking lunch al fresco await.
C Bay Spa's relaxation area is a great space to sit without getting sunburned (or rained on). Grab a magazine or some fruit-infused water and sit on one of several plush stripy sofas to soak up that phenomenal view. In colder weather, the fire is lit so you can snuggle down on an adjoining sofa.
Tell us about the treatments
We tried the Deluxe Voya Facial (90 minutes, £105).
My therapist, Enya, collected me from the relaxation area and led me to a beautiful treatment room with sage-hued cupboards, a large shower, and lilac towels laid out on a large treatment bed. Usually this treatment starts with a back scrub and massage but, when I explained that I was feeling achy from long stints of driving, Enya decided to concentrate her energies on the facial.
The facial began with a cleanse and a scrub using an aptly-named Love a Scrub product. Once that was removed, Enya used a light and zesty Ritzy Spritzy toner to close my pores. The facial massage that followed was extraordinarily good; Enya paid particular attention to the area over my cheekbones, while gently massaging the delicate area around my eyes.
I was surprised to learn that the seaweed mask that came next contained actual pieces of seaweed. These were warmed, softened and laid over my face in strips. Despite the mask feeling slimy and smelling of the sea, the results are worth it. While the seaweed worked its marine magic, Enya gave me a relaxing hand and arm massage. The treatment ended with a rich moisturiser and some eye cream.
Afterwards, my skin looked much brighter with the greyness (a combination of age and overwork) much improved. To finish the treatment, Enya shaped the nails on my hands, tidied up my cuticles and massaged my palms. A great way to end this very personalised treatment.
The C Bay Spa menu offers Aromatherapy Associates and Voya massages, facials, scrubs and wraps. Voya contains Irish seaweed for natural detoxification, while Aromatherapy Associates offer a palette of scents to help balance body and mind. You can book lava-shell massages, too. Treatments for men use The Refinery range of products. You can also enjoy bathing rituals, some complementary therapies such as reflexology, OPI manicures and pedicures, and Mii make-up.
You can eat lunch in your robe in the Sands restaurant next door to the spa, beside the pool (weather permitting) or in the outdoor wooden pavilion overlooking the pool.
A wide choice of dishes is on offer, from salads and sandwiches to freshly cooked hot dishes. Our pre-ordered lunch was ready and waiting for us on arrival, complete with white tablecloth and silver cutlery. We opted for the delicate crab sandwich which was fresh and delicious.
Later than evening, we dined in the Sands restaurant. Our whole Cornish megrim sole (a sustainable fish species) served in butter with capers and samphire was a delight. Our spa partner enjoyed the quirkily named "Executive fish and chips 5-2-1": five different portions of fish in different batters, two sets of peas and one portion of chips. Tradition with a twist.
We loved / we didn't love
The outdoor pool, sauna pod and hydro-pool: If the weather is nice, make time to enjoy them all. If it is cold and rainy, as it was on our visit, sit in the hydro-pool to admire the view, then dry off in the sauna pod.
The staff: When you love what you do, it shows. Everyone we met at C Bay Spa was helpful, kind and cheerful. As someone told us: "We like to say yes."
The new lodges on the beach: These are large (three and four bedrooms), luxurious, and right on the sand. Breakfast is delivered to the lodge and you can even BBQ on the beach.
We didn't love
The walk around the hotel to reach the spa: There is a door into the spa from the dining room but, when meals are being served, you need to go outside, down a set of steps, and walk around to the spa. Grab an umbrella before you set out if it is raining.
Who do you think would like it?
Couples: The C Bay Spa at Carbis Bay is made for romance.
Single spa-goers: C Bay Spa is ideal for a solo pick-me up with an indulgent treatment, a tasty lunch, and perhaps a glass of Champagne.
Walkers: Carbis Bay Hotel and Spa is right on the Cornish coastal path; if you've had a healthy day striding up and down, the spa offers a "Coastal Foot Reviver" just for you.
What bubble rating did you give this spa?
There are four dining options at Carbis Bay. The Sands Restaurant offers fine dining, The Beach Club is a relaxed space just off the beach to enjoy a cocktail and heartier food, The Lower Deck has a tapas-style menu and The Conservatory offers informal dining include lots of chilren's options.
47 hotel rooms next to the Hotel's blue flag beach.
Open seven days a week from 9am to 7.30pm. Treatments are available from 10am to 5pm.