Claridge's Spa: A Subterranean Sanctuary
At Claridge's, a new spa is wrapped in bliss
Three floors below street level, London landmark Claridge’s has been dreaming up a subterranean sanctuary. Designed by Hong Kong-based interior architect André Fu, and housing some of the biggest names in beauty, the 7,000 sq ft Claridge’s Spa is an immersive wellness emporium, befitting of the hotel’s stellar reputation.
Descending in the lift marks the initial transition from the glitzy hustle upstairs into the cocooning effect of Fu’s interiors - all warm oak and solid French limestone, and low-lit in Fu’s masterful way. A suspended Japanese glass artwork by Victoire Bourgois hangs in the foyer, a space soothed by the sound of trickling water at the sculpture’s base. The sensorial journey extends to the seven treatment rooms, complete with cosy bouclé touches, the sauna, steam room and private changing rooms, with robes you’ll never want to get out of, and the swimming pool, heated to a balmy 30 degrees and flanked by limestone columns and intimate cabanas. Bonsai trees are dotted throughout.
Japan, and the spirituality of the East, was a source of inspiration for Fu, particularly the traditional Japanese temples and Zen gardens and onsens in Kyoto. "Instead of imitating these particular aesthetic traditions, I imagined a unique contemporary experience that promotes a genuine sense of mindfulness and balance," says Fu. "This led me to integrate warm colours and natural elements throughout the spa, including wood, water, and limestone. There are also various references to bamboo silhouettes, such as the installation of interlocking oak posts that adorns the threshold at the entrance to the treatment area."
The experts in residency include coveted nail artist Harriet Westmoreland, (the “Claridge’s Special” features the hotel’s signature mint-green tips); hair colourist Josh Wood; cult sculpting clinic FaceGym; brilliant acupuncturist Ross J Barr, and transformative skincare treatments with Augustinus Bader. Next time you walk past Claridge's, imagine the sanctuary beneath.