My husband and I recently had the opportunity to visit Floatworks. My husband had purchased tickets for me as a birthday surprise in September, however we were unable to use them until recently due first to our busy calendar and then due to a delay in Floatworks opening their new site in Canary Wharf. As such, we attended with much anticipation, having waited 8 months for the visit.
What is Floatworks, you may ask? Well, if floating naked in a warm dark room sounds good, then this may be for you...
Floatworks is a floatation spa. According to their website, floatation involves “lying in a salt-water solution in a specially designed tank. It is the most effective and incredible means of stress relief and relaxation available”. The water is heavily salted with Epsom salts which makes it impossible to sink (similar to when swimming in the Dead Sea) and which are supposed to be beneficial for a wide range of ailments.
|Photograph courtesy of www.myhiddengems.co.uk|
Floatation is a relaxation experience which is said to improve sleep, alleviate stress and anxiety, speed up rehabilitation and recovery, boost immune function, improve circulation and relieve pain from arthritis, migraines, injuries etc...
Floatworks is open 7 days a week from 10am until 10pm and booking can be done either online or by telephone.
The sessions themselves are quite expensive, at £65 per session, however they do a 3 for the price of 2 deal and it is possible to become a member to obtain further details on regular sessions.
The premises are compact with private floatation rooms each containing float pods, showers, complimentary toiletries and an inflatable pillow in case you don’t trust the salt to keep you afloat.
We were shown to the room, given instructions and then had sufficient time to undress, shower and pop in the complimentary ear plugs before hearing the soft souinds of dolphins being played into the room. At this stage it was time to submerge ourselves in the warm salty water.
The light in the room and the dolphin sounds faded away after 10 minutes, however you can choose to keep the relaxing blue light in the pod on if you prefer some light. You can also keep the lid of the pod open, if the idea of lying in a dark pod makes you feel claustrophobic. As this was my first session, I initially kept the light on and the lid partly open, however I quickly closed it once I had become accustomed to the pod. Personally, I would recommend turning off the light and closing the lid in order to get the full floatation experience.
I did notice, when playing with the light, that turning the light on and off quickly twice resulted in the soft blue light chancing to multicoloured lights which slowly faded in and out. I found the light sequence to be relaxing.
Once the lights go out, you lie there in total darkness and get lost in your own thoughts for almost an hour, until the dolphin sounds return to signal the end of your floatation experience. The lights in the room turn on and, at this stage, you exit the tank and jump into the hot shower to wash off any salt reisdue.
Delicious smelling toiletries are provided and you can hire a towel for an additional £1. This is well worth the cost in order to avoid the need to carry a damp towel around with you all day! Hairdryers are provided in the receiption area.
Nowadays we are not used to completely ‘switching off’ and it is surprisingly difficult to do. Fortunately, the novelty of the pods distracted me from my other thoughts and I found myself quickly relaxing into the water and drifting off into one day dream after the next...
The experience is surprisingly comfortable. I did not feel at all claustrophobic lying in the closed pod.
After leaving Floatworks, my husband and I both agreed that we felt fantastic – relaxed but very awake and looking forward to the rest of our day.
So, my final verdict – Floatworks is a uniquely relaxing experience and one which both myself and my husband are eager to repeat. After our first ever float, we both felt totally relaxed, happy and full of energy.
Floatworks is located at 32 Skylines Village, Limeharbour, London, E14 9TS, only a couple of minutes walk from South Quay station on the DLR (click here for directions). Bookings can be made online or you can contact them by telephone on 020 7357 0111.