For Purdew, the centre marks a return to Champneys’s roots: âœA lot of spas concentrate on having relaxation areas around different pools; we’ve got that but it’s not our strength. The strength is in things like the detox centre, the wellbeing programmes. That’s our forte, our heritage and that’s what we’ve come back to,â he says.
The detox and wellbeing centre is situated on the former site of the hair salon and some old treatment rooms. The 4,300sq ft self-contained space is opposite the changing rooms and thalassotherapy pool for ease of access, as a thalassotherapy session is the second step in the newly created Voyage of Discovery treatment programme.
The open-plan reception, waiting and foot spa area is bright white and a stark contrast to its surroundings; the aquamarine look throughout was designed by Russell King of Reading-based Butterscotch design, with walls glowing from ambient blue backlights and soft furnishings in pearlescent fabrics. An accent wall carries the texture of a groomed sandy beach and a chrome bowl that looks as though it’s sculpted from seaweed sits atop the reception desk.
The space comprises three treatment rooms exclusively for Thalgo marine calcium wraps, three more rooms that contain a hydro-bath to encourage lymphatic drainage, an underwater manual massage unit to relieve muscle tension and eliminate fat deposits and a dry floatation bed filled with warm water for a feeling of weightless relaxation.
These rooms feature a back wall of dark, natural-grain-effect wood panels in irregular sizes and a frosted glass shower screen with a cut-out pebble design. The other walls are clad in smooth grey marble tiles and dim spotlights are fitted into a thick glass ceiling panel.
One room houses a unit by manufacturer Neoqi, a tanklike âœcapsuleâ that provides a range of experiences including aromatherapy, vibrations, steam, infrared, hydromassage and Vichy shower.