Last weekend we returned to Latvia’s Capital so Danik could once again race in the Riga Marathon. With Danik still recovering from an injury his coach had told him to take it easy before the marathon and avoid walking around too much. As we have both been to Riga before, we didn’t mind too much as we had already seen many of the sites the city has to offer on previous trips.
We had flown into Riga a day before all of Danik’s running buddies so we could spend the day together as a couple before becoming part of a big running group. We are terrible at organising romantic time together when at home in England so we try to make the most out of our travels. It’s not that we don’t enjoy each others company at home but because we’re both shift workers it’s hard to find the time!
We weren’t too sure what to do with our day together and then Danik found the answer. We were going to go check out the luxurious ESPA Riga spa. Danik had found out that within the Radisson Blu Latvija Hotel was home to a stunning spa in Riga and we were keen to try it!
Radisson Blu Latvija Conference & Spa Hotel
The contemporary high-rise hotel is located in the city centre so is easy to get to if you’re not already staying with them. We had been to the hotel on previous trips to visit the stylish Skyline Bar on the 26th floor of the hotel so I had no doubts that the hotel spa would be anything but stunning.
Who Are ESPA?
ESPA are an international company known for being at the most prestigious level of the spa industry with a range of products and treatments that really work. They have years of experience and are focused on enhancing individual’s lifestyle in a way that is both holistic and versatile. What I love about them as a company is that they do not test any of their products on animals. However, some of their products do contain beeswax and honey so not every skincare product is suitable for vegans.
Introducing ESPA Riga
ESPA Riga can be found on the 2nd floor of the Radisson Blu Latvija Hotel. The design of the spa was inspired by the art nouveau surroundings of Riga and has a very modern and elegant feel to it.
The spa is not only open to guests of the hotel but is also open to the public. We just had to turn up and pay an entrance fee of €29 each which gave us 2.5 hours of spa time. Believe me when I say it was well worth the price!
The Changing Facilities
Once we had paid we made our way up to the third floor to the changing rooms to collect our towels and slippers which the spa provide for you. If you are also getting a treatment you’ll receive a robe too.
The changing facilities at ESPA Riga had everything you could possibly need. They had both big and small lockers which had shelves and hangers for your clothes. The showers were incredible and they had some of their ESPA shampoo and conditioner in the cubicle. I used this and my hair felt and smelt amazing afterwards!
The changing room also provides us girls with a very decent and well lit dressing table area. These each had a high powered hair dryer, hair straighteners, cotton buds and cotton pads, as well as some of their ESPA moisturiser. They really had thought of everything! They even had a device for drying your swimwear which was a fantastic idea and something I had never seen before.
After seeing all the changing facilities had to offer I was excited to see the spas leisure area. We walked down the stairs and were instantly impressed with what we saw. I was expecting the spa to be stunning but the design was simply luxurious. I instantly felt very happy about our decision to head to a spa in Riga.
The swimming pool was 18m in length and kept at a temperature of about 28°C. For me it was the perfect size for swimming a few laps. A great way to get in some exercise when on a trip! We never saw more than 10 people while we were at the spa so the pool was mostly empty or had 1 or 2 other people in it.
ESPA Riga also has a vitality pool equipped with air and water jets where you can sit back, relax and let the jets gently massage your entire body. It was just what we needed after flying into Riga the evening before. The temperature of the vitality pool is kept at around 36°C.
Sauna and Steam Room
After swimming a few laps and relaxing in the vitality pool we headed towards the sauna. Danik isn’t a fan of saunas as he finds them too hot but I love them. For me there’s no greater way to relax and unwind than by sitting in a hot sauna.
The great thing about ESPA Riga is that they have two types of sauna. They have traditional rock sauna that is perfect for someone like me who likes the heat. You use the sauna rocks to help generate heat and humidity and can get the sauna to temperatures of 80-100°C.
The other sauna they have is a sanarium sauna that is slightly cooler than the traditional sauna, only reaching temperatures of 40-55°C. The sanarium sauna uses humidity instead of dry heat and is great for blood circulation.
Of course, the cooler option is to use the steam room as the average temperature is usually 33-36°C.
Spa Cafe and Poolside Bar
There is also a spa cafe located on the 2nd floor where guests can enjoy healthy and tasty meals. They also offer a wide range of freshly squeezed juices and smoothies. Sadly we didn’t realise this was here before we arrived and had already made plans to eat at the hotel restaurant. We had a delicious lunch at the hotel but next time we’ll definitely try out the Spa Cafe.
If you’re feeling thirsty by the pool and want a refreshing drink before lunch ESPA Riga have you covered. Next to the pool there is a pool side bar serving refreshing cocktails, non-alcoholic cocktails, champagne and even protein shakes. Not a bad way to enjoy your spa day in Riga.
Although we didn’t take advantage of any on this visit, ESPA Riga offers a variety of treatments to make your spa day something truly special. They advise you to arrive at least 60 minutes before your appointment to truly take advantage of what the spa has to offer. We ended up using the pools, sauna and steam room for almost 2 hours so you may want to consider giving yourself longer than their recommended 60 minutes!
On their website they list several packages to chose from, each including a few different treatments and even lunch. Next time I would love to try out one of their massages and maybe even a facial too.
The plan to visit a spa in Riga was a last minute one but we couldn’t be happier with the decision. It was just the perfect couples activity we were looking for and the best way for Danik to rest his injury before the marathon. It was just fantastic being able to relax in the pool. Especially in the vitality pool with those jets! My favourite part however, had to be that sauna. I just love sitting back in a hot sauna and drifting off into a relaxing coma. It’s pure bliss!
We loved the spa so much we are thinking of staying at the Radisson Blu Hotel Latvija for our next visit. I would just love to wake up every morning and take a dip in the pool followed by the sauna. Latvia will be celebrating it’s 100th birthday in November and we’re seriously considering coming over for it so we may be back to the ESPA Riga spa very soon!
Things to Know
- The price for 2.5 hours to use the saunas, pools and fitness centre is €29 on weekdays and €35 on weekends
- For guests of the Radisson Blu hotel the price is only €23
- Or upgrade your room to have the spa included
- Towels and slippers are included so no need to bring your own (unless you want to)
- Robes are only issued if you’re getting a treatment
- Children up to 14 are welcome but only during the hours of 7am to 6pm
- The Spa Cafe is open from 12pm to 8pm (or 9pm on Fridays and Saturdays)
*All information correct as of May 2018
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