If I could spend every day at a spa, I would. Floating around in hot tubs, wearing fluffy dressing gowns and forgetting about the world outside. To kickstart my birthday celebrations last week, Sarah and I headed to Gleddoch Hotel in Langbank for a chilled out spa day with afternoon tea at their Imperia Spa, which is basically my idea of heaven. Gleddoch is located just outside of Glasgow, a mere 20 minutes from the city centre and 35 minutes from the stunning shores of Loch Lomond. Despite being so close to the city, Gleddoch feels like a world away from the hustle and bustle of the city centre crowds, making it the perfect spot for a day of relaxation.
On Wednesday morning, we set off in the very heavy rain towards Gleddoch, ready to hide from the torrential downpour and soak in the pool. It was a really easy drive, with the hotel being based just off the M8 and very well signposted after leaving the motorway. Straight away I was struck by the view from the hotel, which sits on top of a hill, which despite the thick cloud offered a panoramic outlook over the River Clyde towards Dumbarton.
Upon arrival, we were shown where everything we might need would be and given our locker keys before heading through to the spa area. After changing into our swimwear and donning the huge, cosy robes we pottered on through to the pool to discover that we pretty much had the place to ourselves, bar a few other guests. The main spa area is home to an absolutely ginormous pool, an indoor hot tub, a steam room and a sauna. Through the main room, you’ll find a beautiful conservatory area with lots of comfy armchairs and some heated loungers to enjoy the view from. This was a very welcome discovery whilst the rain was pouring down outside!
We spent most of the morning floating in the pool and putting the world to rights in the hot tub, which is pretty much compulsory on a spa day – right? Before long it was time for our treatments and we were shown through to a small reception area whilst we filled in the necessary paperwork. After this, we were seated in the “Relaxation Room”, which was like a waiting area full of comfy beds and soothing music. I would happily replace the entirety of my living room furniture with the massive bed-lounger combinations, but I feel like my mum wouldn’t be best pleased!
A few minutes later we were taken through to the treatment room for our pampering to begin. There was a double treatment room free at the time so we were able to have our massages together, which was a really lovely touch. We had both opted for a neck, back and shoulder massage to melt the stress away and I left feeling like a whole new woman. I cancelled my gym membership in favour of monthly massages at the start of the year, but I still haven’t been for a single massage since. Oops! The therapist could feel the tension in my back straight away but worked her magic whilst I dozed on the table. After the massage ended (I was heartbroken when it was over) we were shown back to the relaxation room where our therapists gave us plenty of fresh water and chatted through some recommendations for us. Unsurprisingly, my therapist recommended that I have massages twice a month, and now I feel like I’m totally justified in cancelling that gym membership after all.
After our massages, we headed upstairs to the restaurant, still burrowed in our robes, for a spot of afternoon tea. If you’ve ever heard me wax lyrical about my love of afternoon tea, you’ll know that it’s pretty much my favourite thing in the world. Tiny sandwiches, cakes, scones and countless cups of tea? Yup, count me in. Combine it with a spa day and you’ve got heaven right there.
Served overlooking the golf course with a view right across to the tower blocks of Glasgow, this was an absolute treat. We had your standard fare of sandwiches, with a selection of tuna mayo, egg mayo and coronation chicken, followed by delicious scones with cream and jam. Although I thought the spread could have done with a few more sandwiches, mostly because I’m greedy, I had to have a little break after my scone before tackling the cakes, but oh my god was that carrot cake worth the wait. I’m not a huge fan of carrot cake because I find it can sometimes be a bit bland, but this was something else. The perfect blend of cinnamon with a mouth-watering cream cheese icing, I could have eaten this again and again.
We washed it all down with copious cups of tea whilst admiring the view and chatting about our love of tiny sandwiches, as well as determining the correct way to fill a scone and the appropriate method of setting out an afternoon tea – as you do.
Luckily the downpours from earlier in the day had cleared the way, leaving beautiful blue skies and the sunshine behind them. We grabbed the chance to enjoy the outdoor hot tub with both hands and spent over an hour relaxing on the terrace whilst soaking in the view. It’s fair to say that Sarah and I were veeeeery pruney by the time we were ready to leave! Although I loved the whole day, this was quite possibly my favourite bit. Sitting in the sunshine, chatting about life, I couldn’t help but feel at peace. When the sun comes out in Scotland, the views are really something else entirely, and this was the perfect spot to enjoy it from. Plus, as an airport geek, I was delighted to discover that you could actually see the planes taking off and landing at Glasgow Airport from the comfort of the bubbles.
Although I could have quite happily stayed there all day, we eventually had to let some other people have a shot and headed for the heated loungers in the conservatory for a bit of a snooze. Luckily the view was just as beautiful through the window, with the glass light fixtures throwing the most beautiful patterns around the room too. We spent a while flitting between floating around in the pool and drying off in the sauna before the spa emptied and we spied our chance to return to the outdoor hot tub. I wasn’t joking when I said I could have stayed there all day!
I’d never heard of Gleddoch Hotel before I was invited along, but I’m enamoured. The perfect views and the little slice of luxury in the spa was the best way to start off my birthday celebrations, and the staff couldn’t have been nicer. I can’t believe how well placed it is for Glasgow, being so close to the city but feeling like a different planet entirely. The hotel itself also looks stunning, and I’ve been eyeing up some of their vouchers for a little romantic getaway.
All in all, I couldn’t have asked for a better day, and I wish I could spend every Wednesday eating finger sandwiches and looking out over the Clyde from a hot tub. It wouldn’t be a bad way to live, eh?