Reviewed by Lucy Gwilliam
Two of my favourite things in the world are spa days and afternoon tea. I cannot count the amount of times I have been on spa days and for afternoon tea. They are my ideal duo! I was therefore delighted to be chosen to review the BuyaGift experience for a spa day with a 55 minute treatment and an afternoon tea for two package.
The experience days were emailed over and consisted of two vouchers with the information which takes you to BuyaGift.co.uk to allow for details on how to book. Once on the website you can add your unique booking code and pin along with your email address and postcode. You can then choose from a variety of locations to book.
I live in the northwest and there were around 6 spas locally to where I lived. I decided that I would choose The Marriott, in Worsley, Manchester as this is very local to where I live yet I have never actually visited. Booking was easy but the dates I wanted were not available and I had to wait a couple of months for a date at the spa. This was largely due to the backlog that had accumulated due to the covid 19 lockdowns. This was fine and we were happy to wait. When making the reservation, I was given the choice of treatments. These were a facial, massage, hand treatment of foot treatment. I chose massage for both my husband and I.
For the afternoon tea I again looked on the website and in Manchester there was a choice of Cafe Rouge in Salford Quays or Patisserie Valerie in central Manchester. I have never been to Cafe Rouge and have wanted to go for a while now, so we decided to book there. Booking was super easy and the staff were very helpful.
I booked the spa for the Thursday as I was on annual leave and the afternoon tea for 2 days later on the Saturday. I really liked that they don’t have to be taken together and that we were able to have 2 experiences in 1.
The day came for us to go to The Marriott for our spa day and I was very excited. I had read online that due to covid, they would not be providing flip flops and robes so I packed my bags accordingly. When we arrived, we were greeted by friendly staff where they explained what would happen on the day. We arrived around 10.30 and our massages were booked for 1.45 so we decided to spend time in the gym first, followed by a swim. My husband is a big gym buff so he was keen to check out the gym in the leisure suite. The gym had a great amount of equipment and was good for what I wanted but he explained that it wasn’t what he needs. We spent around 45 minutes working out before going to check out the pool area. We were pleased to see that there was a large jacuzzi area, moderate size pool, sauna and steam room. We managed to relax and unwind in all of these areas and we were very impressed.
We then decided that we would like to grab some lunch so made our way to the bar. There was a great section of light lunches on the menu in why was a very busy bar area in the hotel. We had a lovely meal and a coffee before heading for our massage.
The spa area was in between the bar and leisure area and well signposted. I had actually forgotten to print the BuyaGift voucher but the receptionist gave me an email address to send it to to allow us to proceed with the treatment. We then sat in the waiting area and completed our forms. I was very impressed that they asked about how firm we would like the massage. I am extremely ticklish and prefer my massage to be firm. I wish other spas had this on their form as it saves me having to ask for the massage therapist to be more firm mid treatment. The massage was actually the beat I have ever had and I felt completely relaxed and rejuvenated afterwards. I left the hotel a very happy lady.
When it came time to visit Cafe Rouge for our afternoon tea, we didn’t really know what to expect. I had no looked at the menu previously and we were greeted by a friendly member of staff who showed us to our table. The lighting was dimmed, setting the mood and the decor was very french and chic. We were presented with the menu once seated and asked promptly for drink choice and if we would like Camembert or ham on our sandwiches. We both chose Camembert as we’re not massive ham fans. The afternoon tea followed quite quickly after ordering and it looked phenomenal. We dug in and the taste did not disappoint. In addition to the Camembert baguettes, we were given scones with jam and cream, lemon tart, chocolate tart and a mini egg custard along with a mini quiche. I was overwhelmed with the desserts, they were my favourites too!
Overall, this experience voucher is an amazing gift for anyone who loves spa days, afternoon teas and being spoilt. I really did feel amazing afterwards. After this last 18 months, I think that most people would appreciate this treat. It really was amazing! I would rate this 5/5 and I would love to give this as a gift to anyone.
This experience can be purchased on the Buy A Gift website here.