Dublin’s Hidden Haven: The Buff Day Spa

Those who have been before will tell you that a spa day is one of the best pleasures in life. From the heavenly massage to facials, manicures, head massages or a combination of all – spa days are truly the best! The Buff Day Spa can offer you all of these too, as either a package deal or over different visits and I can’t recommend them more.

Rather hidden from the hustle & bustle of the shopping streets, The Buff Day Spa is on South King Street, just off Grafton Street and near the Stephen’s Green Shopping Centre entrance, next to the famous Gaiety Theatre. Here you’ll find everything you need from of a city centre spa, within the three-storey building that caters to women, men, cancer patients and pregnant mamas-to-be.


I first attended this spa a few years ago, when looking for somewhere central to avail of a back massage. The extensive range of massage styles at The Buff Day Spa is impressive, and over the years I’ve had a few different ones, but the Swedish Massage is the one I always come back to.

As I tend to have great tension and lactic acid buildup in my upper back and shoulders, and suffer from frequent leg & foot cramps, the description of the Swedish Massage (€85, 55 minutes) massage truly spoke to me.

This popular massage technique improves circulation, eases muscle ache and tension, improves flexibility. It reduces stress both emotional and physical and is suggested in a regular programme for stress management. It helps with the elimination of toxins which aids in reducing cellulite. – Swedish Massage at The Buff Day Spa

Upon arrival and following a quick check-in, you’re brought into the changing area where you’ll have your own locker, robe and slippers. It is advised to wear underwear or swimwear during a spa day, I always opt for the latter as The Buff Day Spa also has an in-house sauna. The waiting area is very comfortable with many magazines to read from, as well as tea, coffee and water facilities. Here your masseuse will collect you and bring you to the treatment room.

In addition to having had different massages before, I’ve also had different masseuses. My recent Swedish Massage was with Vicky. Lightly scented candles, subtle spa music playing in the background, and a perfectly warm temperature – this was my kind of room.

Following the usual etiquette for a massage, I lay atop the massage bed under towel and prepared for 55 minutes of heaven. Like every masseuse should, Vicky began by asking a few questions whether I have any areas of concern, to which I let her know about the aforementioned tension and cramps, and thereafter she began my body massage with medium-hard pressure.

Starting off with my feet and legs with great pressure on the latter, she then moved to my back, neck and shoulders, where she cracked out knots in circular motions, paying great attention to the tension in my problem areas.

Halfway through Vicky softly asked me to turn and lie on my back, following through with massage etiquette once more, and then she worked through my arms, feet and legs once more, before returning to my shoulders, and ended the session with a final neck massage. During this second half of the massage I often feel myself drift off for a little nap, a habit I’ve learned is a very good sign of a massage done right.

Venus Freeze

I have also received a Venus Freeze* (€95, 55 minutes) treatment with Jeanette, which is a non-invasive skin tightening process that uses a Radio Frequency and Magnetic Fields combination machine. The benefits of this will see smoother yet more taut skin, which also reduces circumference, improves cellulite, and reduces the appearance of wrinkles that gives instant results. I opted for the treatment on my under eye areas.

On the day of my appointment, I was brought up to the treatment room, laid on the massage bed where then Jeanette wrapped my body in warm towels and tucked my hair out of my face with a hairband.

Before starting on my face, Jeanette checked with me whether the temperature of the machine was okay – it is hot so do tell your therapist if it’s too hot for you! In a back and forth rolling motion, she then began to Venus Freeze my under eye areas. This process takes 55 minutes, during which I was fully relaxed and comfortable with the temperature of the machine. As mentioned, results are instantaneous and there was noticeable lift under my eyes. It is encouraged to opt for a series of Venus Freeze Treatments for longer-lasting results.


Another treatment I’ve received at The Buff Day Spa was the The Buff Express Facial (€55, 30 minutes), which was part of a Day Spa package my brother gifted for my birthday. This was a heavenly facial, using the spa’s signature Dermalogica products, which starts with a face mapping consultation during which your therapist can determine which product to use. My therapist then begins with an exfoliation to help brighten my skin, and remove excess residue and impurities. She then used a masque which focused on giving a radiant glow, before finishing with moisturising after care to leave my face well hydrated and refreshed.

Sauna and Relaxation Room

One of the wonderful things I love about going to The Buff Day Spa is that you can use their sauna facility before and after your own treatment. Tucked away upstairs within a room that also features the Relaxation Room, as well as separate shower and toilet rooms, you’ll find the spa’s little sauna. Build to cater to about six people maximum, the sauna is known for its health benefits achieved through deep sweating. This in turn is a simple acceleration of one of the body’s natural mechanism for riding itself of impurities, ergo increasing circulation.

The aforementioned Relaxation Room next door features three loungers, a sofa and bean bags that has dimmed, dark lighting with spa music and water features to give the illusion of sitting within a rainforest. Magazines are stacked high, which you can read over a cuppa or water, both of which are provided in the foyer of this upstairs room.

Visit The Buff Day Spa at 52 South King Street, Dublin 2 or call 01 677 4624 to book an appointment

Nirina xx


Images © Nirina Plunkett, The Buff Day Spa

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