Located within a well-known hotel, the Spa at Mandarin Oriental Barcelona hotel stands out with its own merit and charms
By: Sarah Holbert
Posted on: July 18, 2016
LF Says: ★★★★
I tend to stress out over everything. While I traveled abroad in Europe, this did not change. I figured relaxation was too far out of my grasp to ever be feasible. Yet, when I set foot in the spa at Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Barcelona, the atmosphere told me that perhaps relaxation was not that impossible. That, perhaps, I would find my own nirvana during the next hour and fifteen minutes.
At first glance
The Spa at Mandarin Oriental Barcelona is located below the lobby, closer to the Earth and all things natural, rather than the city streets. From the moment you walk in, your journey to somewhere far away from the stresses, or whatever brought you there, begins. The reception area is dimly lit, with intricate oriental lamps lining the walls, guiding you along your path to recreation. The staff was warm and welcoming, enabling you to begin the relaxation process before the treatment even begins. I hardly had time to sit down before the staff brought out sandals for me to change into, and a tray adorned with a cool towel, a detox tea, along with a bright orange flower that added a pop of color among the more muted colors of the interior. The honey, lime and ginger detox tea was a refreshing cool down after the sweltering heat of Barcelona.
As soon as I had finished the tea, I was led back to the changing room, where a fluffy white bathrobe awaited me. I quickly slipped it on and followed the attendant down the darkened halls. She led me to the relaxation area to await my treatment. The comfortable reclined chairs, soft lighting, as well as music featuring wind chimes and bells calmed me down further. As I sat down, I found myself surrounded by curtains of chains, which created a sense of mystery as to what awaited me on the other side, as well as helped darken the area and set the mood for relaxation. The area also featured healthy snacks such as apples and tea, all meant to keep you content while you wait to find your peace of mind with your upcoming treatment.
Soon, my specialist, Daniela, came forward to greet me and lead me to my private treatment room. Before gathering the supplies and beginning, Daniela went over the treatment with me. She was attentive, making sure to go over a part again if I looked confused. Her commitment to keeping me informed continued throughout the entire treatment, as she told me what she would do next, and when the Glacial White Caviar - what my facial was based upon - was being used. The facial I received was the Mriam Quevdeo Glacial White Caviar Facial, focused on anti-aging. It aimed to reunite the skin, a thorough cleaning to wipe away the impurities of everyday life.
As the light music continued, I closed my eyes and let my mind go completely blank for the first time in months. Daniela held her hands, covered in lavender smelling lotion over my face, telling me to take deep breathes and relax, to let my senses delight in the scent, focusing only on it.
As she ran a serum through my hair and massaged my scalp, I felt my muscles relax, the stress in my body beginning to ease and fade as she worked to ensure just that. First, a deep cleaning of my face and neck was done. It was cold and refreshing. I could feel all the dirt and grime, from the days wandering around the city and the beach, coming out of my pores. Then came the drainage, aimed to drain my face of any toxins still clogging my pores, which would clear the area for the next steps of rejuvenation and anti-aging, that is the Glacial White Caviar.
The first two steps had been cooling, refreshing lotions and masks. The Caviar was everything but that. It was warm, at times feeling like it was burning, but all the while doing its job. As soon as the mask was removed, Daniela applied an oxygen mask, a change of pace back to cooling temperatures after the heat of the last one. The oxygen mask came with the infamous cucumbers over my eyes and was by far one of the most interesting parts. It felt like tiny bubbles were bursting all over my skin, a byproduct of the refreshing it was doing, but an enjoyable part of the experience, causing me to smile and enjoy the microbursts.
After the bubbles began to slow, Daniela applied another mask. As this one sat, however, she began the uplifting massage. It focused on my temples, neck and shoulders as well. She worked on every inch of my upper body, slathering it in a lavender scented lotion that warmed and smoothed my skin. As the massage continued, I found myself amazed at their commitment to true regeneration, as she managed to work out the knots in my shoulder, in turn leaving my body absolutely stress free and rejuvenated before she had even finished the facial treatment.
After the treatment it was time to yet again rejoin the real world. Leaving my peaceful bliss behind me, I made my way back to the relaxation area. Sipping on ice cold water and crunching on the healthy nut mix provided, I pondered how that could have been an hour and fifteen minutes. Time really flies when you do not have a care in the world.
From the ornate decorations, the peaceful atmosphere, and the dedication of the staff, the spa at the Mandarin Oriental is transformative. Not only do you feel as though you are somewhere else, you leave feeling like someone else. A refreshed version of yourself. Whether you are searching for some quick ‘me’ time or total mind and body relaxation, Mandarin can do both, even in something as specifically focused as anti-aging facial.
Rejuvenation? They certainly have that right.
LF Says: ★★★★
Coordinates: 40, Passeig de Gràcia, 38, 08007 Barcelona, Spain
Ph:+34 931 51 88 88