afternoon tea Norfolk

Afternoon tea at the divine Imagine Spa

Imagine Spa, located in the Norfolk countryside, isn't just a spa it has a lovely restaurant within their grounds. It's only 20 minutes drive from Norwich city centre, but feels a million mile away. The chefs are extremely passionate about creating great food for their customers and go out of their way to make the whole experience perfect. You have the choice of eating outside or in their cafe area. The kitchen is open to the cafe and the chefs are extremely attentive to customers, regularly checking f you need a refill and everything is OK.

Imagine spa is a small day spa, so I have never felt overcrowded here or rushed. They limit it to only 16 people using the spa facilities. However, you are more than welcome to book just to have afternoon tea. The cafe only has 3-4 tables, so it's a lovely personal atmosphere.

On arriving at the spa we were greeted straight away by the head of the house at the reception and taken to the garden as we were lucky to have a lovely clear sky. The garden is absolutely lovely including a pond, scented garden and a couple of relaxation pods. We had the afternoon tea option with a pot of coffee or tea. Several options for coffee were available, latte, Americano etc. Our afternoon tea came out on a three-tier plate with sandwiches on the bottom tier, middle and top tier were a lovely selection of sweet desserts and cakes. The brownie with honeycomb on top was particularly tasty, the brownie melted in your mouth, unlike some I have had in the past which have been dry. You can tell the chefs have spent their time perfecting the recipes. This afternoon tea at the time of writing is £16.95, which I am personally very happy to pay.

Imagine spa will cater for hen do parties. At £100 each for 10 guests you can have the whole place exclude to yourself and your guests. If you are getting married soon I definitely recommend calling them for more information on their hen do packages.

afternoon tea Norfolk
Lovely afternoon at Imagine Spa

menu for afternoon tea afternoon norwich

Afternoon tea at Imagine Spa - Norfolk

Imagine spa in Blofield... a secret tucked away haven.

I was lucky enough to get invited to visit Imagine Spa in Blofield and I must say it was heaven! It is hidden away in a country house down a little dirt track. Sadly, because they are a franchise they really don't shine as well as they should on google search and their website. Franchises often don't allow their staff their own Twitter or blog, which I think is a big mistake as this place was absolutely lovely and really personal. Not at all like any other spa I have been to. They only ever have a max of 16 people in the spa at one go, so it's a very intimate and private place. If you have been avoiding spas because you are too worried about your wobbly bits and lots of people, then this is definitely the place for you! The staff were all lovely and I felt instantly relaxed the moment I arrived.

Reception area. To the left is the relaxation room and to the right is the kitchen and entrance to the spa.

They only open on Tuesday nights for special events and tonight was Claire Bunton's image consultants talk on which dress shape you should be wearing. This was fabulous and I believe I must for every man and women to have done. Claire offers a half day consultation where she will come to your house and talk you through which dress shape/colours suit you best. At the moment this is £130 (as of Nov 2014). After the consultation, she will send you a style booklet she makes for you. Read more

spa break Norwich

Where to have a spa day in Norwich?

Spa days and weekends in Norwich, Norfolk - weekend breaks

I often get asked, “Where can I have a spa day treatment with my friends?” There are currently 14 day spas in the Norwich, Norfolk area. A few of these are in hotels, so they can offer overnight stays.

List of 14 spas in Norfolk county.

1. Imagine* spa in Blofield - spa treatments, Serail Mud Chamber & Thermal Suites. My personal review on Imagine Spa... tucked away secret."Set amongst a rural landscape, Imagine Spa Blofield Heath offers an array of treatments for the face or body as well as its famous Serail mud chamber. Visitors can make use of a spacious thermal suite, featuring a mineral grotto, aroma steam room, and ice fountain. The experience is complete with a visit in the lush garden and the restaurant."imagine spa in norfolk

Currently closed.

2. The Bannatyne Spa. Thorpe St Andrew Norwich - Pool, Jacuzzi, Sauna and treatments."Welcome to Bannatyne Health Club & Spa Norwich, Norfolk's first purpose-built Health Club. Located on Norwich's east side and just off the southern bypass, we offer premium gym equipment, luxurious swim and spa facilities as well as 2 Tennis Courts, 2 Squash Courts, 2 Table Tennis Tables and a Badminton Court available for you to use."

3.  La Fontana Spa at Sprowston Manor - Sprowston - hotel & treatments.“Working with some of the world’s finest product houses our team of spa specialists can offer you the ultimate experience in holistic beauty care, whether you are looking for a de-stressing massage, nourishing facial or glamorous nails our spa professionals are able to assist. “

4. Spa St Giles House - Norwich - hotel & treatments."The Spa at St Giles House HotelCome and unwind in a world of blissful indulgence. We offer a comprehensive holistic approach to relaxation.We offer a deeply relaxing environment with treatments tailored to the individual. Our five treatment rooms are spacious, calm places to retreat and unwind. Here at The Spa we offer a variety of award winning brands to meet all of your needs, such as Elemis, LVL Lash lift and the famous O.P.I Manicures and Pedicures"st giles day spa in city centre

5. Aldercarr Hall - B&B swimming pool, sauna hot tub."The Spa at Aldercarr Hall, ties together many of the wonderful features of this delightful setting. Incorporating our beauty salon, hair studio, indoor heated swimming pool, sauna hot tub, and relaxion areas, Aldercarr Hall Spa is the ideal place to relax, unwind and enjoy views of the Norfolk countryside."

6. Elveden Forest Spa | Center Parcs - hotel, pool, sauna and spa treatments. There are Aqua Sana spa throughout the UK."Feel your stresses melt away in the heart of the forest at Aqua Sana. Book a Spa Day and relax in our incredible spa experience rooms. Or choose from a range of face and body treatments to stimulate, indulge and bring out your natural beauty. Each of our spas have over 15 different spa experiences, from wet, to dry, to herbal or meditative, you'll find everything you need to leave feeling relaxed and revitalised. "
centre park spa NorfolkTechnically in Suffolk! Just outside border of Norfolk though.

Centre parks spa is closed for summer 2023 for refurbishment. 

7. De Vere Leisure - Dunston Hall, Norwich, Norfolk - hotel, indoor pool, sauna and treatments."There's a relaxed brasserie with themed food nights, as well as an elegant lounge bar. Other amenities include a golf course, and a spa with an indoor pool, a sauna, an exercise room and a steam room."
hotel spa Norfolk

8. Wensum spa in Norwich - hotel, spa treatments, Leisure Club facilities."If you’re looking for a spa in Norfolk or simply a quick massage in Norwich, the spa hotel at Wensum Valley Golf & Country Club has it all on offer. Wensum Valley Golf & Country Club is home to Wensum Spa, a relaxed and friendly salon offering luxurious beauty treatments, haircuts and colouring, massage and spa packages."hotel spa Norfolk

9. Barnham Broom - swimming pool, sauna, steam and gym."Leave the world outside and enjoy some wonderful treatments in our luxury spa. The spa is open to everyone, so whether you live nearby to Barnham Broom, are a member of the Golf Club, Edge Health & Fitness Club, staying in the hotel or visiting the area, indulge yourself for a few hours of relaxation. Our wonderful range of holistic massage and beauty treatments will leave you feeling radiant and refreshed."

10. The pigs - Spa rooms for the night. Mine and Andy's review on the pigs rooms. We need to go back soon! Amazing place."PIGSPA is our new addition at The Pigs (opened in April 2017) incorporating our original Spa Rooms, Spa Suites, Treatment Rooms and our very own Garden complete with hot tub.Our bespoke treatment list reflects our easy, relaxed approach at The Pigs. We offer a range of restorative facials, indulgent full body massages and of course treatments for your trotters using both our home made PIGSMETICS and Neal's Yard Organic product range."edgefield spa

11. Congham Hall - swimming pool, sauna, treatments, hot tub, hotel"Treatments at The Secret Garden Spa have been carefully designed to enable you to step off the treadmill of modern life and experience life in the Norfolk countryside. Enabling you to replenish and restore your body and mind during your time with us and leave you feeling completely revived and ready to take on life’s challenges once more."
hotel spa Norfolk

12. Imagine* spa - The old Hall - Great Yarmouth - spa treatments, hotel, swimming pool, sauna, Hydrotherapy Pool"Against the backdrop of picturesque Norfolk, The Old Hall has the exterior and sashed windows of an Edwardian country house, with a contemporary spa interior. Facilities include a sauna, steam room, hydrotherapy pool, gym and seventeen meter pool in light and airy, barn-like surroundings, the day spa prides itself on offering a friendly understated environment in which to relax and unwind. Treatments include a range of facials, massages, body treatments, manicures, pedicures as well a beauty salon and hairdressers to complete your day of pampering by making sure you are primed to perfection. There is also a selection of treatments specifically tailoring to men."

13. Imagine* Parkfarm Spa in Hethersett - Park farm, Hethersett - hotel, pool, sauna."Our day spa programmes are designed to meet your individual health and beauty needs and offer the opportunity to get the most value out of your visit. We have a selection of half-day and full day experiences, all offering different programs to provide a slightly different spa experience with us. Each treatment package is treatment lead, but we want to give you the freedom to choose which option you would like on the day."

14. Imagine* Spa in Wymondham - Thermal suites."Imagine Spa at Wymondham Leisure Centre is a hidden Spa Retreat just 9 miles south of Norwich in the market town of Wymondham. Our fabulous facilities include all that you need to escape from the stresses and strains of modern life and enjoy some dedicated relaxation time. With an exclusive Thermal Suite to help you relax and unwind, along with beautifully appointed Treatment Rooms, including a double room – the team at Imagine Wymondham are here to pamper you."imagine spa in norfolk

15. Black barn spa at Filby - Opened in 2020. Filby Black Barn spa has a small pool, hot tub, and sauna. Lots of different options are available to book from a Twilight spa to an overnight stay. 

*Note all the Imagine spa locations are separate businesses working under a franchise brand.


spa day Norwich

What I offer

I can offer an afternoon of treatments here with your friends, including treatments like luxury manicures and luxury facial treatments. However, I am limited to how many guests you can invite as my treatment area isn’t set up for multiple clients. Alternatively, you could also book a pamper party and I can come to you. I often go to people’s homes for pamper parties,  the host provides wine and snacks while the guests sit around in their dressing gowns listening to relaxing music and enjoying some ‘me time’. This can be an afternoon tea or an evening of pampering. I can’t stress how important having a break from the day to day stresses of life is. I personally find it’s nearly impossible for the host to relax at home though as they see all the little jobs that need doing and instead of relaxing with their guest. They often end up doing the washing up!!

Sometimes only a spa will do!

So this is why I personally prefer going to a spa day in Norwich which has a swimming pool, hot tub and a sauna with the possible option of staying overnight, there are several options in the Norfolk area. Most spas do special offers where you get the odd treatment free or packages where you pick two mini treatments. Also, it is worth noting that midweek is often cheaper than weekends and has lots of offers on cheap spa days in the East of England. Groupon is full of special offers, so it’s a good place to start looking.  Always read the small print before booking as some have restrictions as to which day you can use them.

I have put a list of places together below that are local. If you feel I have missed somewhere amazing off the list please do comment below and I will add them to the list. I also welcome people to comment on my blogs with improvements.

Weekend breaks


Weekend breaks are a great idea for a hen do and getting the girls together away from the stress of everyday life. Most brides can get a bit “bridezilla” as the wedding gets close, so it’s important to get away for a day and reflect on what’s important. Often the bride gets fixated on how the bunting must be hung up in the venue and other little details, instead of remembering that the day is about marrying the person they love surrounded by their friends. The wedding doesn’t have to be just the one day. It should be made up of lots of different occasions leading up to the big day enjoying time with friends and loved ones.

As lots of spas have restaurants now it makes them ideal for afternoon tea for baby showers. A lot of these places will go the extra mile and make it extra special for the Mum-to-be. Including displaying “new baby” banner and balloons.

Spa days are also becoming more and more popular with couples. All spas offer treatments for men now too, so it doesn’t have to just be the women getting the relaxation. Most spas are in hotels, so have rooms to stay in overnight, a cafe or restaurants attached to them. However, do note some of the smaller centres don’t always provide adequate changing rooms for men and they often double up as their own male toilet causing a delay on entering the spa area.

Some people don’t like the idea of another person giving them a massage for whichever reason may it be that they’re overweight, have a hairy back or don’t like the close contact etc. I have heard loads of them! This is why the hydrotherapy beds are ideal. You lay on your own in a dimmed room with relaxing music on a silicone bed with pressured jets inside the bed gently massaging out the stress. Imagine in Blofield have one of these and I am sure there are quite a few throughout Norfolk. These are often referred to as a ‘dry massage bed’

spa day in Norwich
Photo courtesy of Blofield in Norwich.
Spa days in Norfolk
Photo courtesy of Blofield in Norwich.


spa break Norwich
spa break Norwich