What is Chrissy’s Collection?
With her lengthy travel background, Chrissy has years of experience assessing accommodation with quality and customer satisfaction firmly in mind. She was also a hands-on Director of an upmarket Kensington apartment-hotel for five years.
As our own Silver Travel Advisor we are delighted that Chrissy brings her experience and eye for stylish detail when she reviews Boutique and Country house hotels. Chrissy’s Collection are her personal recommendations of hotels with something extra that makes them stand out from the rest: discreet and exceptional levels of personal service; stylish, contemporary and comfortable interiors where relaxation is key; smaller, quirky or character properties; luxury hotels with super spa facilities, exquisite dining or amazing locations. In short, very special places.
Low-fats, margarine, red meat, eggs, alcohol, chocolate – are they on the shopping list or off the shopping list this week? Arrrgh!
With a seemingly endless stream of conflicting nutritional directives issued on an almost daily basis it’s increasingly difficult to navigate an array of food advice when doing the weekly shop to know what we should and should not be eating and the effect it will have on our long term health.
Grayshott Spa’s 7 day Regime programme will support and educate you through this fascinating subject in the comfort of their lovely country house spa. Not only will you eat really well with truly inspired, delicious, food, you’ll be pampered too and come to some interesting conclusions about your health, which may be, quite simply, life changing.
So if you are interested in improving and prolonging your health in a relaxing environment, read on, because it’s never too late to start!
On your behalf I was invited to sample a 3 day taster on one of Grayshott’s popular 7 day Health Regimes, conceived specifically to address health issues and improve well-being through the food we consume. As the sampler also included some well-deserved R&R I jumped at the chance.
A month or so before my intended arrival I received some very detailed information about the course but with Christmas cards to write I put it all to one side and never got round to reading it! Early in January I received a phone call from one of the friendly nurses who did a health check on the phone, discussed my dietary needs, and advised reading the pre-arrival information. I retrieved the booklet and, to my horror, saw I had to decrease my consumption of alcohol, caffeine, chocolate and almost everything yummy in this world to prepare myself for the Regime. Oh dear, this wasn’t what I signed up for! Having had a quiet Christmas the beginning of January was quite sociable so once again I put the documentation to one side and forgot about it. A few days before my arrival, just as I was finishing my extra strong Builder’s Tea, the phone rang. Yes, it was the friendly nurse from Grayshott just checking I had given up alcohol and caffeine. She didn’t want to nag but she didn’t want me to suffer from headaches because of withdrawal symptoms. Blimey, I almost felt like an addict but, it did make sense, so for the next 4 days I deprived myself of life’s little luxuries in preparation. I’m glad I did. And if truth be told I should have acted upon their very sound advice a few weeks earlier. However, I survived, thrived, and am here to tell the tale.
The Regime is based on scientifically-backed dietary protocol with specific eating practices and therapeutic treatments and is designed to rest and restore the health of your digestive system which helps improve a wide range of issues. If all this sounds too much, let me assure you it’s delivered in such an understandable way by expert nutritionists that if you have any interest in the subject at all you will be completely blown away by the experience. They also include a 45 minute private consultation with one of the senior nutritionists so if you have any questions or concerns they will outline a personal plan for you to follow when you are home.
In our group there were 15 other people, (all women on this occasion though apparently men do participate) which I understand was quite a large group. But nevertheless it was an interesting mix of people, including a couple of doctors, and a fair number who had stayed before who had come specifically to do the Regime having heard everyone raving about it. There were also some Regime returners coming back for a ‘top up’.
The Regime package includes: health consultation and blood analysis; 1-1 nutritional consultation; body composition analysis; abdominal massages, hydro baths and castor oil compresses to support healing and detoxification; expert daily lectures to explain the relationship between body and food; pre-arrival and post departure support and a 7 day eating plan designed to heal and regenerate. In addition all the facilities are included: a well equipped gym and weights room; separate male and female steam and sauna rooms; swimming pool; tennis courts. And, lets not forget the wonderful choice of therapies that you can book in advance as additional treatments. I had a top class aromatherapy massage and a facial so was feeling several years younger when I left!
You are probably wondering what I ate or, indeed, if I ate. Adam Palmer, Grayshott’s Executive Chef firmly believes that a healthy balanced diet, with the correct portions of the five main food groups is the key to effective weight management and health. He also believes “healthy eating is inspiration not deprivation” with no calorie counting.
Certainly the food served was absolutely delicious, nourishing, and I never felt hungry at all, even on one of the two semi-fasting days following the 5:2 principle when we skipped breakfast and dinner. The food was so good we were all clamouring for the recipes, many of which are detailed in GutGastronomy, a book based on the Health Regime – an excellent comprehensive guide – created by Adam and Stephanie Moore, Grayshott’s Clinical Nutritionist. As part of the Regime package you receive a copy of this beautiful hardback book that I have now read cover-to-cover as I am keeping up the regime at home for the next few weeks to get the full benefit and have already tried two of the recipes – both were delicious.
You may have heard of the Mayr Clinic in Austria, a famous health spa where celebs and politicians book themselves in to lose weight, undergo colonic irrigations and recover from stress. The Regime offers a much gentler programme to the Mayr basic package with the emphasis on delivering realistic eating habits that can be adopted into your everyday life to achieve long lasting health benefits. It’s also about £500 cheaper than Mayr and doesn’t incur the cost of flights and two days travelling. Who would have thought you could have such an experience without going too far from home?
Grayshott is about an hour ‘s drive south of London surrounded by 700 acres of stunning National Trust land in the South Downs. With spectacular walking from the doorstep, which you can do individually or on one of three guided daily walks is a real joy and in spite of mixed January weather I walked each day. There is also a full programme of around 40 exercise and relaxation classes each week to suit all levels of fitness and age if you are so inclined. But, like many people, in between the treatment and lectures I preferred to relax and wander round in my dressing gown. Grayshott is definitely the kind of place where no-one bats an eyelid if you arrive for meals or lectures wearing your dressing gown. Of course you can wear civvies and dress for dinner if you want, but why bother? And not many do. How often do you get an opportunity to pad around in your dressing gown without having to worry about your appearance. Not often I suspect, but here it is actively encouraged.
Grayshott has been open since the ‘60s and many people have been returning for years. Their guest list includes a veritable roll-call of the great and the good, famous actors, tv personalities, athletes and interesting ordinary people like me and you! But as one guest told me everyone is treated with the same care, whatever their background, and are able to relax as soon as they walk through the doors. High praise indeed, but when you take into account the number of brilliant therapists and staff who’ve worked there for years – and I do mean years, including the ‘Fab Five’ with over 25 years service each – it helps explain why they have such a loyal fan base and approximately 50% repeat business. As always, it’s the people that make a place special and I certainly found that to be the case.
Grayshott also offer a Recuperation programme for recovery from illness, sports injuries, post surgery, respite care and emotional upheaval and I honestly couldn’t think of a better place to retreat to for their expert care and holistic individual approach.
Perhaps Spa is a misleading name for this wonderful sanctuary, as its much more an extremely comfortable and relaxing country house with wonderful staff and might not be everyone’s idea of an ultra modern spa. But I loved it and having visited several spas can assure you I will be returning for the full 7 day Regime and probably taking him indoors too. Well, he could do to lighten up a bit and, possibly, so could I.
And I’m sticking to the Regime principles since I got home. I know. Early days. But I’m ready and waiting for Grayshott’s friendly nurse to give me a call as part of their follow-up support and looking forward to our chat.
Chrissy Nason stayed as a guest on Grayshott’s 7 day Regime which includes all meals, inclusive treatments and accommodation.
Read Chrissy’s review about her latest visit in 2018.
Other properties from Chrissy’s Collection:
- Chrissy’s Collection: Amangalla, Galle Fort, Sri Lanka By Chrissy Nason
- Chrissy’s Collection: Bailiffscourt Hotel & Spa, West Sussex, England By Chrissy Nason
- Chrissy’s Collection: Conrad Centennial, Singapore By Chrissy Nason
- Chrissy’s Collection: Heure Bleue Palais, Essaouira, Morocco By Chrissy Nason
- Chrissy’s Collection: Hotel Icon, Kowloon, Hong Kong By Chrissy Nason
- Chrissy’s Collection: House of Jasmines, Salta, Argentina By Chrissy Nason
- Chrissy’s Collection: Kasbah du Toubkal, Imlil, Morocco By Chrissy Nason
- Chrissy’s Collection: Le Temple des Arts, Ouarzazate, Morocco By Chrissy Nason
- Chrissy’s Collection: Legado Mitico, Buenos Aires, Argentina By Chrissy Nason
- Chrissy’s Collection: Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa, Bath, England By Chrissy Nason
- Chrissy’s Collection: Raffles, Singapore By Chrissy Nason
- Chrissy’s Collection: Rookery Hall Hotel & Spa, Nantwich, England By Chrissy Nason
- Chrissy’s Collection: Sofitel Metropole, Hanoi, Vietnam By Chrissy Nason
- Chrissy’s Collection: Sofitel Mogador Golf & Spa, Essaouira, Morocco By Chrissy Nason
- Chrissy’s Collection: The Torridon Hotel, Wester Ross, Scotland By Chrissy Nason
- Chrissy’s Collection: Hazel Manor, North Yorkshire By Chrissy Nason