Penny and Polaroids

by Nuala Gorham

Spa and Shopping Getaway - Sheraton Athlone & Athlone Towncentre

Posted by Nuala on Tuesday, May 12, 2015

A hotel with an amazing spa and a shopping centre attached seems like the perfect girlie getaway - and it is. We all deserve a treat from time to time and I think a spa and shopping trip with friends or family to the Sheraton Athlone and Athlone Towncentre is the ultimate luxurious weekend.

Last Friday my friend Róisín and I went for a night away in the Sheraton Athlone for a relaxing hotel break followed by a day of shopping in Athlone Towncentre. The trip couldn’t have come at a better time. We were both a little stressed and longing for a getaway - and what a getaway it was. We honestly had such a great weekend filled with relaxation, great food (and wine), shopping and so many laughs - it was pure bliss. We all need a weekend like this from time to time, and we deserve it. We deserve to spoil ourselves, to indulge in a little luxury and to splash some of our hard earned cash on shoes!

The Sheraton Athlone is a four star hotel and spa based in the centre of Athlone town. The hotel itself is actually attached to the one of the biggest shopping centre in the midlands and west of Ireland, Athlone Towncentre. Friday was a terrible day here as there was torrential downpour all morning and throughout the entire drive to Athlone. Once we parked the car in the underground car park we didn’t step outside again until it was time to leave on Saturday evening. I’ve been to Athlone before and there isn’t much to see or do in the town itself to be honest so it’s the perfect spa and shopping weekend where you don’t actually have to leave the hotel or get a taxi anywhere. If you’re an international reader visiting Ireland, Athlone is situated on the River Shannon so it is nice to visit and it’s the perfect location to spend a night if you’re travelling through the midlands of Ireland and want to do a little shopping while you’re here.

My outfit for dinner wearing a top I had just bought from Warehouse in ATC

We arrived at the Sheraton early in the evening and checked into our rooms. As this was a press trip the rooms were booked for us and we got such a lovely surprise when we arrived. We had two really nice rooms in the ‘tower’. A window occupied the entire length of my room so it was really bright with lovely views. I had stayed in the Sheraton before a few years ago and hadn’t known about the tower so I recommend asking for a room here if you do stay. I was so excited to see a plate of desert and fruit  awaiting me in my room with the words ‘Wanderlust’ and ‘Penny and Polaroids’, it was such a lovely gesture and it made me more excited than ever for my travel blog, Wanderlust.

Once we had enjoyed our deserts we walked down to the shopping centre and grabbed iced coffees in Gloria Jean (a must - they’re so good) before looking around a few shops. I was dying to visit Zara and H&M especially as they’re so big there and I also picked up a top in Warehouse to wear to dinner that evening. I’m a fussy eater so it can be really annoying when eating in nice restaurants as there often isn’t much choice so I was so happy to see a huge menu. There was three pages of mains alone - meats, fish and vegetarian options - and loads of sides to choose from. Much to my own surprise, we hit the gym in the morning before breakfast and then got into our robes and slippers to hit the spa.

The Spa

We were both booked in for an hour and thirty minutes treatments and spend over two and half hours in the spa altogether, not wanting to leave even if it was to go shopping. The Sirana spa has a really warm and relaxing vibe. I know some spas are bright as they’ve a rejuventating theme but the spa at the Sheraton is all about unwinding which I loved. We relaxed for awhile in the Tepidarium (a heated) room before our treatments. I had the Spring Forward spa treatment which involved detoxifying dry brushing followed by a full body massage, a head massage and a luxurious tri-enzyme Elemis facial. It was honestly the best spa treatment I’ve ever had. Róisín had the Fresh Start package which combined a full body exfoliation, a back, neck and shoulder massage, and an Elemis facial. She loved the treatment so much she’s already planned a trip back to the Sheraton next month for the exact same treatment! She actually got a really good deal as they have summer deals on now. After our pampering we relaxed in the serenity lounge and drank mint and cucumber infused water to further flush out any toxins. My skin felt and looked so much better the day after.

We spent the rest of the day shopping in Athlone Towncentre before grabbing burgers in the Sheraton Athlone bar and heading home again, reluctantly. We hahttp://athlonetowncentre.comd such a perfect girlie weekend and we couldn’t have been happier with the stay, our treatments and our shopping! I’ll be sharing my purchases with you all tomorrow so be sure to check back for that!

Until next time,



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