Half as Old as Time

Monday 13th March 2023


"These blackout blinds are amazing" I said. We couldn't tell if it was day or night.

The thought of staying in bed all day was appealing but it wasn't just breakfast that made us get up, we also had a Spa day booked for 11am today.

Half asleep, we made our way up to the Al-Saraya buffet breakfast where for me, it was a repeat of yesterday. I just couldn't get enough of those pickled aubergines!

Breakfast was faultless. Everything tasted fresh and delicious. 

This morning Julie discovered the pastries, both savoury and sweet. Her favourite was a thin slice of a cheese and ham filled bread, followed by a sticky bun topped with a glazed banana. Her groans of pleasure sent me to find one for myself.

It was the perfect way to end breakfast, along with a strong cup of coffee.

At 11am we made our way to the award winning Zara Spa. Having booked a two treatements over 100 dinars per person (in total) we were given complmentary use of the spa for the entire day.

We first entered a large reception room with water feature that was neither spectacular nor attractive in the middle. Ambient music played in the background whilst a lovely perfume filled the air. We were instantly at ease as we filled out the health forms.

We entered seperate changing rooms to get into our swimwear, donned a robe and slippers, then met the otherside in the waiting room for our first treatement, a Dead Sea salt scrub.

There was something not right about the room. I know its easy to laugh at those who believe in a room's asthetics, the feng shui of it all, but when it's wrong it just doesn't feel right. It was triangle in shape and was more of a passageway linking two buildings, and as such it didn't flow. 

We were distracted from our holding pen when offered dates as a welcome gift and told to help ourselves to water, juice or tea and coffee. I do like a good date, especially a plump medjool variety.

Before too long our masseurs arrived, although technically I suppose they could be called our scrubbers as our first treatement was a Dead Sea Salt Scrub.

Unfortunately they didn't have a room large enough for a couples so we were taken to seperate treatment rooms. I was instructed to strip and put on a pair of paper briefs. Then robe up and walk across the corridor to sit in the steam room for five minutes.

Julie was already there, also in her paper briefs.

Back in our individual rooms the scrub began. It felt great, especially around the foot and ankles were the mosquito/flea bites had accumulated. The exfoilation plus the sting of the salt felt strangely satifying.

Despite only being a half hour treatement it was a full body scrub, and my favourite part was when she scrubbed my chest. Masseurs don't usually go there, and for good reason. It felt far too good.

All of sudden it was over, far too soon.

After our scrub we explored the rest of the spa, coming across a nice feature of terracotta pots,  set inside the arches of the windows, several rows of them creating a screen filtering the light.

On the other side we found a hydropool, a large swimming pool with a bubbling jacuzzi centre. A large canopy created shade from the sun whilst you pummeled those aching muscles with powerful water jets.

Further along, as we waded beneath a bridge we came across an infinity pool, with seats. It overlooked the Dead Sea, although in a slight criticsm, when you sat in the jacuzzi chair you were facing the wrong direction.

The bubbles came on and off automatically, so I sat on a seat waiting for it to burst into life. When it did the force threw me off the chair. I soon got the hang of it though, holding on for dear life, whilst I allowed the rest of me to float on the waves of jet streamed bubbles.

We relaxed here, especially as we were the only people here! It was like we had a private pool all to ourselves. It felt truly amazing.

Julie even found time to knit in the infinity pool.

Shortly after midday we relocated to a larger terrace with another infinity pool, on the other side of the complex. There were other guests here, as if they didn't know about the hydropool.

 We were so relaxed that it was gone 2pm by the time we thought about food. The Spa itself didn't have a cafe however they had a menu from which we could order and the meals would be delivered to us.

A little later a waiter skated onto the terrace with their roller skates bringing our  lunch. What great service!

Julie went for the chicken burger, whilst I had the Halloumi wrap, and fries to share. Of course a beer and wine was also administered.

A few hours later we still had time to kill before our massage, so we went exploring and discovered the Dead Sea floatarium. It was a small room filled with water from the Dead Sea, or at least saturated as much. It had the same buoyancy so we floated around in a beautiful chill out zone.

Our recently scrubbed bites were stinging like hell but at the same time we felt it must have been doing some good.

At 4pm we relocated again to the waiting room, ate a few dates, before being taken to our massage.

We had booked a 50 minute treatment which felt wonderful but again felt far too short when it came to the end.

It was now 5pm and the sun was begining to drop. With every passing minute the sky filled with a warm glow and the temperature gradually dropped. It's wasn't cold just noticably cooler. It was time for us to leave.

Instead of going straight back to our room we stopped for a drink at the Splash Pool Bar. It was surprising how quiet the place was. We literally had the place to ourselves.

After only one round we headed back to room 27 Wadi Rum only to find our key didn't work. I know sometimes if the key card is placed too close to a mobile phone they can demagnitise.  "It's probably what's happened" I knowingly told Julie before huffing in despair when I realised I would have to walk all the way up to reception to sort it out.

Luckily however, we remembered seeing a cupboard in the wall with the image of a telephone on the door not too far away. Press 1 for reception and they took care of it. Within minutes someone arrived on a golf buggy whizzing down the access road with a new set of key cards. Trauma averted.

An hour or so later we got dressed and went out for the evening. We passed another couple who were stood outside their room unable to get in. So it must have been a system glitch and not just us.

We turned around quickly to get a full happy hour. Sipping our half price drinks our thoughts turned to supper. We hadn't made a reservation for this evening because we weren't too sure how the Spa experience would play out.

 We thought about where we would like to eat but didn't have to think too hard. There was no competition really, The Grill was by far the best dining option at the resort.

When we reached the village square we could see that the restaurant was a lot busier this evening. Fortunately for us they still had room for two.

There was a large group in tonight. One of the party appeared to be management by the way she was bossing the staff. She was British, terribly terribly English. It felt like we had gone back a hundred years to colonial Trans-Jordan and were witnessing appalling attitudes towards Johnny Foreigner.

As it was our third night in a row there wasn't much meat-free dishes on the menu that I hadn't already tried! I ordered what was described as a Cauliflower Dome. (fried cauliflower in a tahini sauce) and very nice it was too. I also ordered the Hummus Balilia which turned out to be just warmed chickpeas simply seasoned with cumin and my least favourite dish (if it could be called that) of the trip.

My favourite this evening was their cheese Arayes. It was more like a quesadilla than what a traditional meat filled Arayes would look like but I loved it .

We also had batatas harrah and Julie had the chicken again.

Tonight was the last of our trip so we didn't make it a late night. We were back in our room by 9pm packing our bags ready for the early start in the morning. 

  Next Day >>>  

ęCopyright 2000 - 2022  Colin Owen