Luxury spa to replace tartan tat store in run-up to Christmas
It is a tartan tat merchant better known for its ear-splitting bagpipe rock than an air of calm.
Lush Spa will offer a cutting-edge therapy known as a Sound Bath, among others, and is set to open in December.
A spin-off of the successful Lush Cosmetics, which already has a shop in Princes Street, the spa is the first of its kind in Scotland and is expected to be launched to considerable fanfare in the run-up to Christmas.
The firm said it had been “a dream” to operate in the shadow of Edinburgh Castle and had been searching for the right premises for some time.
Business leaders said the move demonstrated the changing face of the Capital’s primary shopping thoroughfare and predicted that other retailers would move in to the area as the completion of the tram line nears.
Among the treatments already popular at the Lush Spa branches in Chelsea and Kingston upon Thames is the sensory onslaught of the Sound Bath, at £65, which involves singing bowls and tuning forks and is designed to induce a state of deep relaxation.
Paul Wheatley, property director at Lush Cosmetics, told the Evening News: “Edinburgh is a beautiful city and somewhere that we have traded successfully for over ten years.
“Since we introduced Lush Spa it has been a dream of ours to open one in the heart of the Capital, so we are delighted to be opening our first Lush Spa in Scotland on Princes Street overlooking historic Edinburgh Castle and offering our unique country cottage-style spa.
“Along with our other new Lush Spa, also opening in December in Liverpool, this will be one of only six Lush Spas in the UK.”
Lush is currently awaiting permission from city planners to refurbish the empty store. Staff at the Lush Cosmetics shop at the opposite end of Princes Street are expected to transfer to the much larger premises towards the West End at the end of the year.
Andy Neal, chief executive of Essential Edinburgh, who represents and promotes around 600 firms in the city centre, said that the organisation expects more traders to move to Princes Street’s west end over the next year.
The area is expected to be in demand as there are only two tram stops in Princes Street, at Shandwick Place and The Mound.
He said: “Whenever any of the vacant spaces in Princes Street are taken up it’s very good news.
“Often you hear Glasgow has got these first, so if this is a first for Scotland then that’s a great vote of confidence for Edinburgh city centre.
“We expect this will become a prime location and if traders are picking up properties there’s a sign that is already the case.”
A major study by the acclaimed Gehl Architects in Copenhagen has recommended more cafes, restaurants and other non-shopping “experiences” on the ground floor of Princes Street around the arrival of the trams.
KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON
Sound Bath – One hour for £65: A treatment encouraging the customer to “listen to what’s going on inside”. It features tuning forks being struck and placed close to the ears to clear the mind of chatter and allow focus. Also includes being spritzed with jojoba oil and having volcanic hot stones placed on the cheeks and forehead.
Synaesthesia – 90 minutes for £125: A massage with essential oils choreographed to the music “so you will be the centre of a physical ballet”.
Validation Facial – One hour for £75: Non-invasive
treatment “designed to validate and instil inner confidence”. Includes a choice of facial therapy to specially composed music to take you on a “surreal journey of self discovery”.