I am lying on a heated treatment bed in a seaside holiday house having a deeply wonderful massage and facial, smothered in organic Neal’s Yard skin care products and feeling utterly relaxed. This is surely the best possible way to start a vacation. Usually I take a week to wind down, especially if the journey was a nightmare. But after two hours in my therapist’s competent hands, I’m a completely different person: calm, de-stressed, all the knots in my shoulders vanished. If I were actually staying here in South Green House with my partner, friends and/or family, we could all begin our week away in a similar state of bliss.
This is the essence of My Personal Sanctuary (now part of Glo Pamper), the company that aims to bring the treatment room to you, whether you’re at home, work, at a party, or on holiday with friends and family, as long as you’re somewhere in the UK. Glo Pamper currently employ over six hundred experienced therapists throughout the UK and work across the holiday cottage industry delivering their services to thousands of self-catering properties and private holiday homes -- including Suffolk Secrets, who manage South Green House in the chic seaside town of Southwold.
My therapist today is Gillie Lane, who founded My Personal Sanctuary at her kitchen table. Gillie has 21 years as a beauty therapist and spa manager under her belt and clearly still loves to get her hands oily. Your day is designed from the moment you make the booking with the concierge team until you meet your therapist and have your consultation.
Gillie goes over my allergies (tea tree and aloe), any sore points (shoulders), then asks how I feel today (tired) and how I’d like to feel (de-stressed but still alert enough to make the most of the boutiques and sandy beaches).
She then takes ten minutes to transform the two top bedrooms. One becomes a changing room with scented candles, a cute pot of Neal’s Yard herbal tea (Passion Flower and Lime – delicious), plus the most beautifully soft towelling robe, which you can opt to buy if you wish.
The bedroom opposite is darkened with flickering candles and gentle music, with a warmed and comfortable treatment bed. Gillie begins by brushing me with a cactus bristle body brush - not as painful as it sounds! - then applies Geranium and Orange Body scrub to remove dead skin cells and boost circulation, before starting my aromatherapy massage.
It’s clear from the outset that Gillie is completely attuned to my emotional and physical wellbeing. She uses broad, deep strokes on my painful shoulder knots, which are so much more effective and pleasant than pressing and kneading.
MPS’ holistic approach means that as well as healthy holiday-goers and hen parties, they can also cater for clients who have special physical needs, from pregnancy and old age, to more serious illnesses and disabilities – one of their clients is Disabled Holidays. What’s great is that if you are physically impaired or recovering from an operation, you don’t need to move from your bed.
After my heavenly massage, I am given a facial which begins with a cleansing routine, followed by a Honey and Orange Facial scrub. My skin is refreshed with a Rehydrating Rose Toner, before a precious damask rose infused oil is massaged deep into my face, neck and scalp. This is followed by a mask and more massaging. The crème de la crème is the Frankincense Hydrating Cream, which contains lots of vitamins and nutrients for a plumped-up youthful glow.
The joy of having a treatment in situ is that afterwards I can lie on my own holiday bed and let the surroundings sink in, along with my lovely massage oils, with no need to worry about the journey home. The shops and beach will have to wait.
How to book your private mobile spa
**As of June 2018, all My Personal Sanctuary bookings are being handled by Glo Pamper which offers Spa To You packages, corporate and workplace bookings, wellbeing services such as yoga, nutrition and mindfulness workshops, as well as hen and pampering parties. Glo Pamper will continue to work with the hand-picked and trained team of My Personal Sanctuary therapists and combined with their own team of professional, fully insured mobile therapists.