Fake-cation: A BirminghamMom Escape

You don’t have to get out of town to find some time to yourself.  One of the best summer escapes for a BirminghamMom has to be a day at Ross Bridge Spa.  A day here can take you a world away without a plane ticket, though you’ll feel like you had every bit of the vacation you deserve.

For starters, spa services are discounted 20% for us locals on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Your spa service allows access to the spa facilities for the full day, with the relaxation room, whirlpool, steam room and showers, which feature tumbled marble, dark woods, and fluffy white towels. Best of all, your facility access includes Ross Bridge’s glorious outdoor pool with its abundance of lounge chairs, sun umbrellas, and a range of depths that are perfect for soaking, dipping or swimming.

The spa itself is chock full of luscious lotions, soaps and creams at your disposal, and the sunscreen is particularly rich and fresh smelling. The spa boutique opens onto the pool deck, with much appreciated easy access to the large, private showers and restrooms. Since the spa is open until 8 p.m. on weekdays, you really do have a full day and most of the evening to relax and unwind.


I recently celebrated a birthday at the spa and after my massage, quiet time in the relaxation room, and soak in the whirlpool, I had the staff place an order from the spa menu. When my order arrived (chicken salad on lightly toasted sourdough, fresh fruit, and chips), I took it poolside to enjoy with a great read. A step into the pool was all it took to cool off periodically, and the pool side bar was staffed to provide a refreshment or fresh towel.

At dusk a bagpiper, in a signature Ross Bridge touch, walked the grounds playing traditional tunes including a children’s medley that was particularly appreciated by the kids at the pool.  Since the spa is open until 8 p.m., I still had time to shower, dress, and return to the terrace where hubby and kids came to join me.  There the bagpiper reappeared and answered our questions about his tartan (referred to by my son as a skirt; we have some cultural awareness to develop).  When the bagpiper learned the reason for our visit, he spontaneously played “Happy Birthday” and later ended his performance with “Amazing Grace”, to the applause of appreciative visitors on the balconies above.

I could have gone to much more effort – spending more, burning vacation time, and inconveniecing several schedules – and had no more memorable an experience than my day at Ross Bridge.  This is a fabulous fake-cation destination, only a digit or two from your own zip code.