Bliss Atlanta — Downtown Puts the ‘Aah’ in Atlanta

There’s nothing like a glass of champagne, a concoction that includes freshly grated ginger and a 105-minute massage treatment to take the edge off of a stressful week.

I will be the first to admit that I was a little skeptical about returning to a Bliss Spa after the so-so experience I had at one of the locations in New York City. But my recent visit was a Christmas gift from my fairy godmother, Aunt Deb, so I figured I had nothing to lose.

Aunt Deb had purchased us both a 105-minute ginger rub treatment (also available in a 135-minute version). So last Thursday afternoon, I headed over to the W Downtown Atlanta spa location to meet up with her for our Bliss experience.

From the moment I arrived, it was a completely different experience from the visit in NYC. A valet took my car (which is complimentary with validation from the spa), and once I arrived at Bliss I was greeted and shown to the locker room area.

By the time I’d changed into my robe and spa shoes, a glass of champagne was waiting for me in the relaxation room. (The room itself is on the smaller size, so I’d imagine that it wouldn’t be as relaxing on a busy day at Bliss. But it was quite peaceful on my late-afternoon Thursday visit.) In addition to my beverage, there were other munchies such as cucumbers, olives, crackers, cheese and the signature Bliss brownie bites to enjoy while I perused a few magazines.

Before I go on, let me interject that it’s always a good rule of thumb to arrive for your appointment early enough to enjoy the amenities the spa offers and to budget time after your treatment to relax. (I’m a firm believer in getting as much bang for your buck as possible.)

For example, when the weather warms up, using the outdoor pool at the W Downtown Atlanta is a perk that comes with a visit to the spa. Also, there is a lovely steam shower for visitors to enjoy before and after treatments. Just remember — it’s OK for you to arrive a few hours before your appointment, so take advantage of this.

Aunt Deb eventually joined me, and promptly at 5 pm, our spa technicians came to get us for our treatments. For the next 105 blissful (yeah, I said it) minutes I was massaged (on a heated massage table) with freshly grated ginger root and essential oils, wrapped up in a foil sheet like a burrito and then given a FWABulous massage. It was heaven.

Usually when I’ve had a massage in a hotel spa setting, the experience hasn’t been very impressive. But the woman who worked on me at Bliss (Lesley) was phenomenal, and I may very well go back and see her on my own dime.

After finishing up, I met back up with Aunt Deb in the relaxation room. This was her first time visiting a spa, and I think she will be a repeat customer when she is in town. We both gushed about our experiences for a bit before taking our showers (I opted to use the steam, which was a great extra) and enjoying the Bliss body products that are available in the locker room.

So what does this belle think of Bliss now? Let's just say that the W Downtown Atlanta location has every right to claim on its website that this Bliss puts the “aah” in Atlanta.

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