Beach Box Sauna: Brighton’s Traditional Sauna Experience
Beach Box Sauna is one of those places you visit really not knowing what to expect. Situated on Brighton’s Madeira Drive (directly opposite Concorde 2) this little oasis may initially seem out of place sandwiched between the Volks railway and bright yellow Sea Lanes containers. However, once inside you realise pretty quickly that Beach Box is a little oasis offering total escapism from the hustle of Brighton. Spend two hours here and you’ll be transported to a uniquely quirky place of calm and relaxation.
About Beach Box
Beach Box is a sauna experience which includes a pair of traditional wood fuelled saunas right on Brighton beach. The larger of the two saunas has been cleverly up-cycled from packing crates with a second smaller sauna being converted from a horse trailer. Having been approved by the Swedish Sauna Academy, Beach Box offers a traditional sauna experience complete with plunge pool, leaf whisking, treatments, fire pit and the option to have a refreshing dip in the sea. If you’re looking for a spa experience with fluffy gowns and slippers this might not be for you. In my opinion this is so much more than a typical beauty experience, this is a taster of a whole way of living.
A standard sauna session costs £20 and lasts 2 hours. Guests will need to bring their own towels, gown, beach foot wear and swim gear. Beach Box also invites sauna users to bring their own snacks and non-alcoholic drinks for the Sauna Munchies! There’s a small change area with lockers – there are only cold showers available at the moment so it’s wise to bring some warm clothes to change into at the end. A standard session allows the use of both saunas, the plunge pool, showers and a seat by the fire pit in the evening.
If you would like to indulge in a more specialist experience you can arrange for a sauna master to guide you through a range of treatments. Prices start from £36 per person (for a minimum of 4 people) for which you’ll receive your own tailored selection of treatments including natural body scrubs, leaf whisking, face masks and salt inhalations.
I not only found these treatments really relaxing but also really interesting. Our sauna host, Liz was so informative filling us in on everything from health benefits to the origin of the ingredients as well as helpful tips on the proper way to sauna. I mean, I’ve used a sauna before but I was clearly utterly clueless! In case you’re more like me than Liz here’s a brief summary of what we experienced:
Beach Box use a mix of birch and oak whisks imported from Lithuania. The whisk is made up of a tight bunch of young twigs tied together tightly with string. Using a whisk when your body is warm can promote better circulation whilst cooling your body’s temperature. It might look like you get hit pretty hard but it actually feels like a gentle tickle. It’s very relaxing and smells great – although you need a good wash afterwards to get rid of all the leaf bits.
We were presented with a beautiful tray of home-made body scrubs that we got to try out during one of sauna sessions. My favourite was a honey and tea-tree scrub which was applied to our chest area. The honey helps open pores whilst the tea-tree clears the airways. We also tried a lovely cacao face mask which left my skin feeling incredibly soft and clean.
The Plunge Pool
I was oblivious as to just how important the plunge pool is in the sauna process. The rapid change from hot sauna to cold plunge stimulates blood flow enhancing skin health and blood circulation. I can tell you that I had to fully commit to immersing my body in that cold water on a breezy March morning, but was able to feel the positive effects immediately. I felt a lift in mood and awareness plus my skin felt great. I’m not sure I could manage a full plunge in the middle of winter but I can certainly appreciate how good it can make you feel.
I can’t emphasise enough how much I enjoyed our time at Beach Box. This really is my kind of place. It’s welcoming, relaxing and quirky. My friends and I all commented on how we had that holiday feeling during our visit – a real sense of escapism and total relaxation. Beach Box is a true find and one that I’m already longing to returning to. If you’d like to find out more about their opening times and special events please visit their website here.