Friday, 7 September 2012

Spa Review: Sabai Leela

Bianca's Beauty Blog's Spa Correspondent, Gillian, reviews the Sabai Leela Spa in London.

I arrived at Sabai Leela (282 Old Brompton Road; SW5 9HR) on a damp dreary afternoon in August.

The shop frontage of this spa belies the interior which waits within. If you had spent a day at Earls Court, this escape would be just perfect. Open the door and a fantastic aroma & soft music welcomes you inside, along with the offer of a beverage. I chose water…as one should before a massage.

The reception area offers comfortable chairs and pleasing dark wooden shelves, displaying the products neatly arranged. I was soon greeted by my therapist and led down a set of spiral stairs to an ever-expanding cavernous range of facilities. The lighting was low, immediately relaxing you; make sure, however, to watch your step on the spiral staircase as your eyes adjust to the lower light.

Sabai Leela provided relaxing, pleasing on the eye, but above all clean facilities…a must. Showers were available, and beautifully decked-out rooms, named after oriental flowers, added to the ambience. There was even a treatment room for his & her (or her & her/his & his) treatments, although as my husband wasn’t with me I did not explore this option.

Onto my treatment, in which I embarked upon my first Thai Combination Massage, a bargain at £55 for 60 minutes. I have never had the courage to have a massage in Thailand during holidays there, mostly because I know masseurs are firm, and this made me worry about my communication skills. Having had a back operation more than 10 years ago, I would have wanted to be able to express my specific needs, but disputed my ability to do this in a foreign language. On this note please take the time to tell the staff at Sabai Leela if you are aware of any injury or long term health issues prior to your treatment.

All the important things were in place: a warm candle-lit room, and questions asked as to how firm I liked my massage. Above all I was given the privacy and time to change and get ready for my treatment. As I lay down on the massage bed, with its face hole, a bowl with flowers & aroma greeted me - a nice touch.
I like a very firm Swedish massage, but having experienced my first Thai massage, would I say I wanted the same intensity next time? Possibly not - this was powerful, but good, matching the deep muscle massage of my ex-Army sports therapist! Perhaps next time I might ask for medium rather than firm pressure, but no harm was done - in fact, having asked for the firm touch, my therapist identified that an existing ankle injury spreads right up into my calf. Tiger Balm was offered, and this welcome offer was accepted, helping to ease problems the next day.

This massage offered a complete body experience: feet, hands, arms, legs, neck, head and body. This massage did not disappoint and I left totally relaxed and moisturised from head to foot. Do remember to take a hairbrush though; you will need one if you don’t want to get the tube looking like you have been dragged thought a hedge backwards! A brush is offered by Sabai Leela, but you may prefer to bring your own nonetheless.

What’s more, you are advised to arrive at least 30 minutes before your appointment, to give you time to take advantage of the herbal steam and sauna rooms, which are truly blissful. Robes & slippers are provided and personal lockers are available.

On departure I was offered another drink, and herbal tea, biscuits and purified water soon arrived, all served on a delightful tailor-made Eastern wooden block. A good visit; I’d return.

Gillian was a guest of Sabai Leela. To book your treatment, call 0207 373 7763 or request an appointment online at, where you will also be able to view a full list of treatments available.


Anonymous said...

I am curious to know - did you actually pay for this visit or was it arranged that you be invited in to experience the spa? Just curious.

Anonymous said...

I am curious to know - did you actually pay for this visit or was it arranged that you be invited in to experience the spa? Just curious.

BiancaP said...

Hi there

As it clearly says at the end of the post, Gillian was a guest of Sabai Leela. Generally "guests" do not pay their own costs as per the dictionary definition of "guest", so you assume correctly - Gillian was invited free of charge.

Whenever bloggers are sent free products or participate in experiences as guests, this is in return for a fair (not necessarily positive!) review. In the past I have been sent free products by companies only to absolutely slaughter the product on here - and this is in the interests of fairness to the consumer so that they do not waste their money on a product or experience.

Please don't hesitate to let us know if you have any more questions :)

Lulu de londres said...

I have been in Sabai Leela twice first one one of my friend took me by surprise and invite me there! That was end of 2009 and that was an amazing experience that we both enjoyed the service, the treatment and this feeling of relaxation!
I have renew the experience february 2012 and same thing it was amazing ( if I could afford i would go more often of course).
With all those new website offering Spa deals I have been trying few of them ( because of the attractive price) But havn't been fully satisfied. So if you can go to Sabai Leela

Chiropractor Moscow Pa said...

Sounds cool! Would want to visit that spa when I go to London. Great review! Thanks for sharing your experience!

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