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After earning a big promotion, Sarah decides it’s time to restore her neglected self-care regime with a weekend of wellness at Swissôtel Sydney.
When I was announced as the new editorial director at our magazine, I was thrilled. It meant all those early mornings, missed gym sessions, cancelled dates and late nights had finally paid off! I was also determined to celebrate with a little gift from me to me – a staycation right here in Sydney. It’s been so long since I’ve had the time to appreciate my beautiful city, and even longer since I had the chance to practice any kind of self-care. I needed a change of scene, a moment to myself and the inspiration to embrace a new wellness regime. Where better to find all three than the luxurious Swissotel Sydney?
A weekend of wellbeing
I bought cute new workout clothes and packed the latest Nora Roberts novel (my ultimate guilty pleasure). My colleagues had strict instructions not to call for 48 hours, so who knew? Maybe I’d actually get past the first chapter! From the moment I stepped into the lobby, it was obvious I’d come to the right place. Welcome drinks? Hmmm, I know I promised to be healthy and ditch the alcohol this weekend but since it’d be rude not to… Yes please! When I was shown into my Corner Balcony Room, I fell in love – first with the show-stopping, floor-to-ceiling CBD panoramas and then with the snowy white king bed just for me.
After kicking off my heels and stowing my suitcase, it was time to get serious about the fitness goals I’d set myself. I requested a pilates mat and yoga ball to be delivered to my room (hard to accidentally ‘forget’ about them when they’re right in front of you!) and downloaded the hotel’s local running routes. Deciding that 10 kilometres was a little too ambitious, I opted for the slightly less intimidating 5.5 k route. I was so glad I did! It took me along Circular Quay, past the harbour ferries and the thronging tourists, past the iconic white sails of the Opera House and through the tropical greenery of the Botanic Gardens.
I’m telling you, the four walls of my office felt like a distant memory! I remembered why I moved to Sydney in the first place and was so busy revelling in the scenery around me that I (almost) forgot about my burning muscles. By the time I got back to the hotel I was feeling pretty impressed with myself, and decided I’d earned a proper bubble bath instead of my usual hurried shower.
When I finally emerged from the suds after finishing not one but four chapters of my novel, I was ravenous. Thankfully the menu at JPB restaurant was a celebration of locally sourced, health-conscious cuisine so I didn’t undo all my hard work when I tucked into a succulent fillet of Tasmanian salmon. Maybe the coconut mousse I had after was a little more decadent but hey, what’s the point in having workout equipment in your room if you can’t indulge a little bit?! Plus, my Accor Plus membership gives me such great food discounts it would be criminal not to make the most of it. After dinner, I fell into the cloud-like embrace of my Sealy bed for the first early night I can remember in ages.
Of course, after months of setting my alarm clock for the crack of dawn, I inevitably woke up early. I didn’t mind though; the sight of the first rays of sun touching the domes of the Queen Victoria Building opposite was a highlight of my stay. It definitely gave me the inspiration I needed for a few early morning salutations on the balcony. Afterwards, I skipped the hotel’s famous breakfast buffet (major self-control points!) and headed to the spa for a massage instead. As time slowed, the scent of alpine oils filled my nostrils and the cares of the last few months disappeared beneath the masseur’s expert hands. I had found the sense of balance and inner wellbeing I came here for! After one more session in the outdoor Jacuzzi, I could return to reality feeling restored and ready for whatever my new role sent my way.