Monday, November 1, 2010

A different weekend

Darkness and cold are soon going to take over completely and we decided to spoil ourselves and do something a bit different from usual.

We ended up choosing to go to a hotel with a spa and spend the night there (hoping that the cats would do a good guard to the apartment). Based on some seminar/conference/presentation/whatever that Mattias held in the place, the location and the reviews we went to Ystad Spa Saltsjöbad.
We had gone previously to another swedish spa and we were not super enthusiastic, but the premises here were pretty good and the expectations were kinda high.
Like always, of course, since I am not yet a professional blogger, I haven't taken 200 pictures to put here, but I will bore instead with my usual detailed stories...zzzzZzzz

We arrived to the place and the exterior was not what had imagined. I thought of something more classical and instead here it was a bit some sort of collection of buildings put together, without big harmony.
"Well, maybe it is just the appearance".

After checking in with a confused receptionist, we went in our room. Modest, but with a really nice view. I bet that during summer it is even nicer!

We enjoyed then some tea and scones, although not exactly in English style and investigated the dinner options. It seems that the restaurant was going to serve some sort of 3 dishes menu over a quite ok menu a la carte.

It was time for enjoying the SPA, but problems starting to arise. When in the room we got called by the SPA reception.
Guess what? We were late for one of the treatments and instead of offering some replacer, saying we could come down anyway and have it shorter, they just kindly told us we would not pay for this one.
Aha. Thank you very much! We never got the information about the time of this treatment!

We arrived, after a lot of walking, at the SPA section and the atmosphere was really nice. We explored a bit and there was a really nice atmosphere. One of the sections had big white beds were people were waiting to be called for the treatments.
The common SPA parts were quite small and we were a bit disappointed over this. There is just a small warmed pool, a whirlpool bath, a sauna and then some chairs to look at the sea where people were sitting and reading. Some also other minor amenities were present: a shower with RGB colors (!), a cool water small pool were people were going to bath between a sauna session and another.
We also found out the day after that there were warm pools outside and steam saunas in the changing rooms (pity nobody told us).

Time to get ready for dinner! We arrived at the restaurant of the hotel and the atmosphere was quite alright. There was a bit of queue to sit, but we had our table booked. We looked at the menu and we could find something to eat there for us, but then we saw what our neighbors were getting and it looked like the portions were for cats and even the quality... (or even worse!)
Luckily, also the service was terrible. We waited 20 minutes and then we just stood up and left!

And now? What to do?
We went downtown Ystad and we totally improvised. We reached the center of the town and we were looking desperate for places where to eat, ready even to eat at Max.
But, eventually, we spotted a place called Store Thor and we just went there.
Nice place in a cellar, with a really nice atmosphere!
We managed to get a place quite quickly and we looked at the menu and what everyone around us was getting. Big portions ;-)
We chose some things to eat and finally our food arrived.
My hamburger was just too small ;-)

What a dinner! We were really satisfied that we managed to escape the hotel restaurant and ended up there!!!!

On the Sunday, we finally had the occasion to deal with the SPA treatments, after an average typical scandinavian breakfast (not that many cakes and juice from concentrated :-/) and for my sake that was quite alright, in Mattias' case he was really happy about it!

Let's not talk about other misunderstandings with the receptionist, the SPA receptionist and whatever.
In general we can say for sure that the service simply sucked as well as the synchronization between restaurant, hotel and SPA. The SPA is nice, but too small for the amount of people that was there and surely should improve for what concerns organization (and prices).

Nevertheless, we had a lovely weekend (even though we missed Pico & Romeo) but that was the goal we wanted to achieve :)


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