London Health & Beauty
Vanessa Kandiyoti is a polymath—which alone is reason to be fascinated by her. Born in Belgium and raised in Turkey, she lived in Paris for a stint, studied law, and now resides in West London, where she designs beautiful, delicate jewelry based around the seven chakras. However, Kandiyoti’s side talent lies in meditation. She leads group sessions from her home and is available for one-on-ones. Aside from having the most calming voice and soothing manner, Kandiyoti is a fascinating and optimistic person, so whether you’re an experienced meditator or a novice, you’ll leave feeling centered and uplifted.
Nymph of Neptune
Astrology is one of those enthralling specialties that we can never quite figure out for ourselves, which is why we have the London-based Nymph of Neptune on speed dial. With several years of experience interpreting client’s birth charts behind her, this astrologist is an expert at illuminating the significance of planetary positions—specifically Mars, Venus, Mercury, and the moon—at the time and date of our births, and what that might mean for us personally and professionally. An hour or two with Nymph of Neptune is truly enlightening. What’s more, sessions can be conducted in English, Italian, or French, the choice—and the path—is yours.
104 Draycott Ave., Chelsea
There’s only one word for Estelle Bingham’s practice: transformative. Or maybe two: utterly transformative. Her particular combination of crystal healing and guided meditation melts away the anxieties of modern life. She’s done this for twenty years, and if you choose to surrender and commit some time to exploring her methods of holistic healing, the results can be remarkable. You can book sessions either at Bamford’s sparkling new well-being haven in Brompton Cross or at home.
20 Upper Ground, Southbank
After a long, dehydrating flight or an intense week at work or really any other time, come to think of it, there are few things we love more than a massage at Aqua Spa in the Sea Containers hotel (formerly the Mondrian). Skin specialist Alexandra Soveral’s Signature Treatment is manna to your visage. A deep clean is followed by an intense lymphatic-drainage massage. Hot and cold stones are dipped in fragrant oils and rolled over the face, taking care of puffiness and smoothing out fatigue lines. Soveral’s organic, nontoxic products are made from botanicals grown on her family farm in Portugal—and they smell heavenly. Pick up a jar of Angel Balm, a miracle in a jar that you can cleanse with or smear on as a hydrating mask while up in the air or overnight in bed. You can also book in with Soveral herself at her Maida Vale London clinic.
20 Upper Ground, Southbank
A new discovery for us, Agua Spa is located under the hypermodern Sea Containers hotel (formerly the Mondrian) and designed by Tom Dixon. It’s the antithesis of a normal spa. There are no hard corners, only undulating surfaces that curve into corridors and communal spaces, and the color scheme is white, grey, and silver. The whole vibe is more akin to a spaceship or a futuristic cocoon than the usual wood/cotton/natural-light mix. The manicures and pedicures are both indulgent and blessedly efficient, but of all the treatments, the Soveral Signature Facial is one we come back to again and again. If you’re into lymphatic massage, aromatherapy, and nontoxic beauty, you won’t be disappointed. We also found ourselves in the womblike relaxation area sipping herbal tea and reading newspapers (thoughtfully left by each bed) long after our appointment ended.
Bamford Haybarn Spa
104 Draycott Ave., Chelsea
Carole Bamford’s latest London enterprise, the Bamford Haybarn Spa, is fast becoming our wellness home away from home in London. Tucked away on Draycott Avenue in Chelsea, the building looks like something straight off of Bamford’s own Gloucestershire farm, with its rustic white wood and signature green glass bottles full of nontoxic botanical oils, creams, and serums. Inside, you find a full wellness temple with a subterranean spa and first floor space offering yoga, Pilates, meditation, and fascinating workshops with holistic experts (like crystal healing and sound baths). The “sleep” treatment is our go-to after a long flight or a bout of insomnia. Each session starts with submerging your weary feet in Epsom-salted water while you pick your oil of choice and the music you want to drift off to. One hour is all you need to feel thoroughly depuffed and ready for bed. If you want dinner first, Daylesford Organic is blessedly around the corner, for vibrant, straight-off-the-farm food (straight off Bamford’s farm, that is).
Lanserhof at the Arts Club
17-18 Dover St., Mayfair
Several goop staffers are longtime fans of the Lanserhof’s clinic in Austria. So we were delighted when they opened their first UK clinic, across the street from the Arts Club in Mayfair. The custom-tailored programs at this medical spa and gym marry time-honored holistic treatments with modern medicine. Arts Club members and Lanserhof patients can avail themselves of the top-notch facilities that include Britain’s first cryotherapy chambers, treatment rooms for sports injuries, diagnostics with the clinic’s doctors, and a thoughtfully crafted menu of healthy food to tuck into post-treatment.
The House of Elemis
2 Lancashire Court, Mayfair
Each floor of this renovated townhouse seems more luxurious, calming, and super-indulgent than the next. The treatment packages are especially amazing if you have an afternoon to spare; if not, The Speed Spa offers 15-minute and 30-minute services like eye facials, firming facials, and massages—all of them fantastic. The spa’s Penthouse is even more luxe: A spa concierge arranges your entire experience, from a door-to-door chauffeur to tickets for a post-treatment show or restaurant reservations.
Sound Sebastien Sound Bath
14-16 Betterton St., Holborn
A long-established wellness practice on the West Coast (as well as the Far East) sound baths are finally hitting the mainstream in London. The soothing sounds of chanting, tuning forks, and gongs are the antidote to London’s sensory overload, forcing the mind to quiet and focus only on the sound and your breath. For those who struggle with “traditional” meditation and mantras, sound baths are a joyous relief. Jasmine Hemsley—of the Hemsley and Hemsley cookbooks and café—founded Sebastien with her friend Toni Dicks, and the same calm that pervades all her other wellness ventures is equally present here. This winter’s residency is at Good Vibes in Holborn. Book in, rest your head on a lavender-scented pillow, settle in underneath a warm blanket and just listen.
2 Hearn St., Shoreditch
More than a gym, Blok is a full fitness complex in Shoreditch, a few steps from Liverpool Street station. There are thirty-two different types of classes spanning yoga, Pilates, boxing, barre, and Blok’s own custom classes. The place is beautiful in a stark, modern way—the studios are all glass, brushed concrete, and textural woods with corridors illuminated by soft lights. The café is an ideal post- or pre-workout spot to fuel up with coffee, protein shakes, and plant-based bites that arrive in the prettiest sculptural wooden bowls. Blok’s store, meanwhile, is filled with natural beauty products and workout gear.
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