Gourmet Food and Dreamy Spa Treatments at Careys Manor
Careys Manor Hotel & SenSpa offers vegan and gluten-free options, plus the most relaxing and revitalising treatments in the gorgeous spa.
If you’re looking to celebrate World Vegan Month or simply give your wellness and beauty a boost, you’ll find the perfect place is Careys Manor.
The luxury country house hotel & spa in the heart of the New Forest offers heaps of healthy food options as well as slimming and beautifying treatments – the Bikini Girls sampled an ample selection over a short but very sweet 24 hour visit.
With its Thai style vintage interior Careys Manor is the perfect escape for a detoxing weekend. The Manor is extremely large and old fashioned with fresh elderflower cordial available as soon as you enter the hotel which instantly helps you relax into your spa break weekend. Careys Manor Hotel & SenSpa instantly makes you feel wonderfully pampered with their staff on side to look after you and help you discover exactly what you need throughout your stay.
The most popular and definitely our favourite part of the Manor (besides the restaurants which were to die for) was the Senspa, a luxury and tranquil place that we spent probably 80% of our time during our stay…
There are two pools and one hot tub available for the guests, one is purely for swimming whilst the other a hydrotherapy pool perfect for relaxing and soothing any aches of pains, with water beds perfect to lay back and relax on whilst you are massaged by the jets.
We spent most of our time lounging around this one. In the SenSpa area are different rooms and facilities including a crystal steam room, Laconicum, Tepidarium, a sauna and a relaxation room, with tiled, heated sun beds that we definitely attempted to both get on together!
The Bikini Girls opted for different treatments and still argue over whose was best… Vicky had a massage with light-medium pressure and an express manuka facial:
‘I found the massage so relaxing and unwinding, it completely rid my back of all the aches and pains from my intense training regime; I snoozed the entire way through and woke feeling so refreshed. My treatment was finished with an express 30 minute manuka facial designed specifically for my skin type. As I’ve been suffering with break outs recently, so was directed to have an oil free facial using manuka honey to help calm, exfoliate and soothe my skin.’
Meanwhile Deni went for the Shakti Total Body Boost Ritual, a combination body treatment:
‘The aim of this treatment was total relaxation and revitalisation and it certainly did the trick. First, my skin was gently exfoliated all over with a polish (you can also choose salt), then it was enveloped in a wrap. I’ve never experienced a wrap treatment before and it involves lying down on a giant silver foil sheet before being lathered all over in a ‘body mask’ – in my case it was algae & seaweed for smoothing and slimming, but you can also choose cleansing clay.
I was wrapped up in the sheet like a Cornish pasty about to go in the oven for the whole thing to ‘develop’. It was a wonderful warm feeling of being cocooned and looked after – seriously! – A bit funny too of course.
I washed in a shower based in the treatment room after the scrub and after the wrap, while my lovely therapist waited outside. Finally, I was treated to a heavenly Swedish full-body massage. It was absolute bliss and my skin has never felt so soft.’
Vegan and gluten-free afternoon tea
Celebrating world Vegan Month, Careys Manor presents vegan afternoon tea by head chef Alistair Craig. It sees the usual cream-filled fancies replaced with a selection of tempting treats that include a chocolate mousse pot, a seasonal fruit slice, a golden syrup rice crispy cake, and a coconut milk truffle, all served alongside a selection of open and finger sandwiches.
Deni had been waiting four years to indulge in an afternoon tea since going vegan – and this did not disappoint, especially the gorgeous Eton Mess made with aquafaba meringue. Meanwhile Vicky has never tried gluten-free scones before and was delighted to be able to join the party.
Dinner & breakfast at Zen Garden
We opted to dine at the Zen Garden restaurant as we are obsessed with Thai food and Thailand in general – Careys Manor is certainly the place for us!
To start with we got a coconut-based soup and the Zen Garden Vegetarian Ruam Mid – a mixed vegan starter – which were both divine. The Rum Mid came with spring rolls, tempura veg, taro fritters and a gorgeous papaya salad. It was huge but Deni had to try one of the delectable-sending mains.
While Vicky went for a classic and delicious Thai green curry, Deni opted for the Pak Phad Phrik Thai – stir fried mixed veg, local mushrooms, spring onion, cracked black pepper and soya sauce. Simple and full of flavour.
The next morning, we worked up an appetite at the pool which opened at 7am, before heading to breakfast which started at 8am.
We enjoyed a coffee and continental breakfast before tucking into our cooked-to-order hot mains from the a la carte menu. The vegetarian English breakfast featured more local New Forest mushrooms, beans, spinach, grilled tomato and vegetarian sausage. A perfect end to the most gorgeous overnight spa break.
The Manor House hotel
Careys Manor boasts 77 plush bedrooms and suites all with king or super-king size beds, the award winning SenSpa, 3 onsite restaurants and 4 star award winning service.
A nutrient-rich food revolution at the hotel has seen the rolling out of plant-based menus at the elegant Cambium, the Thai Zen Garden, and French bistro Le Blaireau, under the guidance of botanical superfood company Spring Green London.
Chef Alistair Craig’s a la carte dishes include red pepper and tomato gazpacho with avocado, kumquat panisee with pumpkin and coriander seeds, aubergine samosa with quinoa salad and roasted grapes, and butternut squash purée with spiced cashew nuts, roasted beetroot and runner beans – finished with herbs from the hotel’s kitchen garden. Delightful!
Delicious desserts feature options like beetroot and strawberry sorbet with New Forest strawberries and lemon balm, and avocado chocolate mousse with raspberry and orange.
With the hotel’s enviable location at the heart of the New Forest, there’s plenty of opportunity to walk off all that fine food, and afterwards, take time to relax at the hotel’s luxury Thai SenSpa, with its world-class hydrotherapy pool and fitness suite.
Choose from a variety of spa days, spa breaks, half days and evening visits. For more information, head to careysmanor.com.