Sunday, 22 May 2011

Amazing Claire!!

Some bridesmaids are just worth their weight in gold!!  All of my bridesmaids have been amazing by helping me, listening to me and being available when needed for fittings, secret meetings, etc.

My first night out in Glasgow - Claire on the right, Sarah in the middle!

This week, Claire really has gone the extra mile in helping me deal with a ridiculous situation!!  I had a slight dilemma when trying to book our Spa Day for our Spa weekend where we had booked and paid for a lodge at the spa that sleeps eight for three nights.  Then I tried to book their Spa Day deal that came up which includes treatments and lunch in the spa and tried to book for us all to go.  I was told that they don't accept group bookings of more than four!!!  I explained we had booked a lodge at the spa for eight of us and we all wanted to use the spa together but was told no, it's their policy.  So I booked for four of us and called Claire to ask her to book for the other four and we'd just meet up inside.  I gave her the times we were booked for the 'thermal experience', lunch and treatments so we could try and match them up as close as possible to at least spend a couple of hours in the spa area together.  They wouldn't let her!!  Now, luckily Claire is EXCELLENT at dealing with this kind of thing (much better than I am!) and explained that this was unacceptable and that if that were the case, we should have been informed at the point of booking the lodge as we would not have gone ahead knowing we wouldn't get to spend any time together in the spa - they weren't even going to let us have lunch together!?!?

Raging is an understatement, we were livid!  Now, despite the fact that Claire has an interview for a promotion at work next week, is currently on maternity leave and has two young children to look after, she took over and demanded to speak to someone more senior to try and sort it out.  Five phonecalls later, they would only let us all have lunch at the same time.  Still not acceptable.  She explained that we had people coming from England, Saudi Arabia (my Mum who will be staying with me by then, but still...) Aberdeen, Glasgow and Edinburgh to spend time together.  The reason for them not allowing groups larger than four is because their regular paying members of the spa don't like big groups circulating.  We felt we had to explain what kind of people we are and that we have no intentions of being noisy, boisterous or disruptive and just want to chill out in the spa together - we were made to feel like second rate customers despite the fact that when you add up cost of the lodge for us all, plus dinner, spa treatments, spa packages and afternoon tea and champagne we would not be spending an insignificant amount!!

I believe we were then offered free champagne and a goodie bag for the bride (me) and unlimited access to the spa rather than only two hour blocks.  We still were unable to have our treatments all around the same time though so in order to have time together in the spa we would have to go at 9am and stay til about 6pm to mingle in between everyone's treatments.  Not really how long we intended to spend in one go - think of the pruney fingers!!  Claire explained this was never about getting freebies and we just wanted to be able to have all the treatments in the morning or afternoon - even just 2-3 at a time every hour taking up just a portion of our day rather than the whole day!  In the end, given the struggle we had to try and sort out something so simple for our supposedly relaxing weekend together, we decided we would rather not spend our money there and go elsewhere.  Claire worked her magic and contacted the Blythswood Square Hotel & Spa explaining our predicament and we had only three weeks to go.  They were extremely helpful, have nine treatment rooms and space for us to all get our treatments at the same time giving us the rest of the day to use how we like - including being able to use the spa all together from any time 7am-7pm.  Ideal!  They also had enough twin rooms available and an offer which includes dinner and a bottle of Prosecco in our room on arrival!  Bonus!!

Luckily, given all the hassle we had with the previous place (and Claire's fabulous and diplomatic way of dealing with it) we were told we could cancel our lodge without having to forfeit the 60% we normally would at this late stage.  Phew!  So we are now booked into the Blythswood (which I've heard has recently been voted the top Spa in Scotland) for two nights and we are spending the first night at my flat instead for a proper bonding session which also allows Claire and Sarah to join in for more of the time as they have young children and wouldn't have been coming for the full three nights at the other place anyway, but can easily pop round here after bedtime to join in the fun!

I would just like to say a HUGE thank you to Claire for being SO AMAZING and dealing with all of this and keeping the majority of this stress away from me - with just 6 weeks to the wedding I can be doing without any more of that!

Post Wedding Update:

We had a brilliant time at Blythswood...


My girlies!

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