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River Wellbeing Spa at Hotel Rafayel at The Hotel Rafayel

I booked the "Exotic Coconut Ritual Wrap Spa Day" as a birthday gift. The treatments and therapist was great. Unfortunately, the front of house staff and facilities really let it down. When i initially called the lady on the phone booked us in for the wrong month so there was some confusion and as a result we couldn't get the time we wanted on the day of our choice. They did offer a further glass of champagne as an apology. However, I had to constantly remind staff that we were due our glasses of champagne and juice. There's a sign at reception stating that if you "don't ask you don't get", which felt like the wrong attitude for something I had booked in advanced. I wanted a care-free and relaxing day and not to have to keep reminding staff what drinks we had as part of our deal. They then arrived all at once which meant the champagne became warm by the second glass.

If you're planning a day of it and to use the restaurant you cannot stay in your robes, like in some Spa's, or get food delivered from the restaurant to the relaxation room, so you have to leave the facilities when you get hungry! We went on a Saturday and the place is quite small, so with around 8 couples it felt crowded. The Jacuzzi can only hold 3 people at a time, as can the steam room and sauna. To get to the relaxation room you have to walk through the gym, which is used by hotel guests too, so the whole feel isn't particularly relaxing.

The relaxation room is nice with views of the river. However, you are quite close to other guests and again it doesn't really feel like it can accommodate more than 8 people. I found the whole experience quite embarrassing as this was supposed to be a birthday treat for my friend and instead it felt like we were being rushed and not looked after.

I think if i lived closer and could book on a weekday then perhaps the experience would have been better. The treatments are really well executed but it doesn't work as a package. You certainly can't spend the day here, a couple of hours at most.

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