I went to the University of Glamorgan to study Beauty Therapy and Spa Management. After University I moved to the Middle East and worked in Dubai, initially as a Spa Manager and then as an Area Manager working for some of the country’s leading hotels such as Grovesnor House and Emirates Towers. I returned to the UK in 2010, moved to London and joined charitable social enterprise and leisure operator GLL, who had just diversified into the spa sector with its fledgling spa brand Spa London (now Spa Experience).
Today Spa Experience consists of seven branches, with a number of new openings scheduled over the next year.
Start of Day
I try and start my day with a healthy breakfast of Quinoa porridge with berries and I use my Nutribullet to make a green smoothie.
I tend to be ‘on the go’ at lunch time, as I work between all our different Spa Experience locations. If I’m near a Leon Café or Pret a Manger, I’ll pop in for something healthy and delicious.
I enjoy spending time with family and friends. My latest ‘hobby’ is cocktail making, having been inspired by some of the wonderful creations to be found at the London bars and restaurants I’ve visited and wanting to replicate them at home. I subscribe to a monthly ‘Cocktail Box’ which supplies me with ingredients and instructions on how to create a new cocktail. My current favourite is a Passionfruit Martini.
Because Spa Experience is part of a larger leisure group (GLL) I’m lucky enough to enjoy discounted gym membership. I try and exercise a couple of evenings a week and enjoy cardio classes.
Secrets of Success
I think my University course was a huge help as it gave me an insight into the business side of things. It has enabled me to combine business acumen and an ability to look at the bottom line, with my hands on experience of delivering treatments at the highest level.
I also believe in myself, my abilities and my vision for the business’s future. Having that self-belief has really helped me when I’ve had to convince others of a decision or future direction and when I’ve needed to secure investment.
I think in this industry it is essential to stay current and ‘on trend’ and not to be afraid of change. It’s crucial to listen to what customers want now and to anticipate what they’ll want in the future.
My philosophy is based on positivity. It’s crucial to create a happy, working environment that encourages staff to want to stay for the long-term and engenders loyalty. I also think it’s important not to take yourself too seriously.
Favourite Skincare Ritual
My daily ritual comprises Murad’s three step programme
- Environmental Shield Essential C Cleanser to wash away impurities
- Environmental Shield Advanced Active Radiance Serum to restore clarity
- Environmental Shield Essential C Day Moisturiser Broad Spectrum SPF 30
I use these products because they are designed to repair and protect skin that is exposed to high levels of pollution, something I’m conscious of, living in London
I take Vitamin B12 and Evening Primrose. I also take Murad’s Pure Skin clarifying dietary supplements, which combine Vitamin A, Yellow Dock & Burdock Root and Zinc.
Exciting Industry Developments
I think that consumers are recognising the physical and emotional benefits of thermal therapies and increasingly incorporating them into their daily lives.
Rather than being perceived as a special treat, a visit to a thermal spa is now more about a lifestyle choice and part of an individual’s regular health/social/relaxation or beauty regime. We’re seeing an increase in membership of our thermal facilities that demonstrates this.