The best UK spa breaks to rejuvenate your body and revive your soul
THE best British spa breaks to rejuvenate your body and revive your soul.
We sent three of our staff to discover spas in Buckinghamshire, Dorset and London.
Horwood House Hotel, Buckinghamshire
Writer Rosie Gizauskas gave her mother Denise a stay in a majestic setting.
The spa: In the rolling countryside of Buckinghamshire you will find Horwood House, a magnificent Grade II listed manor house built in 1911, surrounded by extensive manicured gardens.
The main pavilion has a chic, modern extension that houses the H Spa, as well as two restaurants and most of its rooms.
Our executive suite was spacious and spotless, with a super comfy bed, nice bathroom, and a separate lounge to relax in with a G&T.
There was also a terrace, ideal for sitting outside and contemplating the green and tranquil countryside.
We challenge you not to feel zen.
And relax: The H Spa is the most idyllic place to have a good time.
As well as a state-of-the-art gym, 15m swimming pool, steam room, sauna and treatment rooms, there are plenty of luxurious spaces to relax and unwind.
The spa offers a menu of wonderful treatments to choose from.
My 25 minute back massage, £49, was so relaxing I could even have stopped for a few minutes.
To complete my super indulgent day we had a delicious afternoon tea with a glass of prosecco, £31.49.
Bonus points for the great dairy-free options, including the avocado and beetroot sandwiches!
Come back : Guests are spoiled for choice when it comes to dining options at Horwood House.
Dinner at Harry’s Bar & Kitchen was delicious – we loved the courgette and fennel coconut cake, £7, for starters, followed by the oven roasted cauliflower with cashews, £14, and melting beef brisket, £26.
The lemon meringue, 6, for the pudding was also a delight.
The next morning we enjoyed a traditional English breakfast in the hotel’s 1911 restaurant.
It’s a massive deal and sets you up for a full day of making the most of the fitness and spa facilities.
To book: Double rooms cost from £179 per night including breakfast (Hspahorwood.co.uk).
The Eastbury, Dorset
Associate Production Editor Kirsty Spence and her parents Christine and Colin have perfected the art of chillaxing in the West Country.
The spa: All the luxury Georgian elements and walled gardens, The Eastbury is the kind of place you’ll never want to leave.
Its 27 rooms are decorated with William Morris fabrics and the softest pillows we’ve had the pleasure of falling asleep on.
For a very special stay there is the new self-contained three-bedroom Eastbury Cottage, with its own wood-fired hot tub and private garden.
It’s full of antiques, but has all the mod cons — including Alexa, Netflix, White Company toiletries, and free sloe gin.
Between spa treatments, stretch out on the hotel’s deckchairs, try your hand at croquet or take in peaceful views across the valley from the ruins of nearby Old Sherborne Castle, entry £6.50 (English-heritage.org.uk).
And relax: At the bottom of the garden, you will discover a jewel spa offering an enticing range of treatments.
Treat yourself to the signature massage and bespoke facial, £160 – two dreamy hours of being scrubbed from head to toe and massaged with oils, while facialist Molly resets your post-Covid complexion, thanks to the selection of Caudalie products.
If that’s beyond the budget, get a VIP vibe with one-hour exclusive use of the hydrotherapy pool, sauna, jacuzzi shower and – our favorite – outdoor hot tub, £25pp.
You’ll enjoy a true Snow White moment among the birds and squirrels as the jets of water pound those hard-to-reach knots.
Come back : Sample the tasting menu at the hotel’s award-winning restaurant, Seasons, at £70 for seven courses.
Feast on perfect plates of whipped goat cheese with cold beetroot soup, braised shoulder of lamb and candied rhubarb with ginger ice cream.
Add a flight of wine for £28, expertly paired with the dishes – we loved the Sherborne Castle rosé ‘summer in a glass’.
For an afternoon pit stop, The Three Wishes offers homemade fruit scones with the works for £3.
Well, you can’t come to Dorset without having a cream tea!
To book: Double rooms cost from £206 per night including breakfast (Theeastburyhotel.co.uk).
Montcalm East, London
Acting Lifestyle Editor Emma Ledger and her friend Kate have passed away in the heart of the capital.
The spa: Stressed Londoners need all the help they can get, and the urban sanctuary Montcalm East – part spa hotel and part creative hub – offers both relaxation and inspiration.
Located between bustling Shoreditch and the bustling city, the building’s diamond shape nods to modernism and daring.
But stepping inside means instantly leaving the hustle and bustle behind and entering a world of calm with super attentive staff.
Views from rooms offer better viewing than Netflix, and thoughtful touches — like underfloor heating in the bathroom and free purified water — make you feel truly taken care of.
It’s so peaceful, we could have been deep in the countryside, and we slept like logs.
And relax: The hotel’s renovated underground spa, Bokeh, offers everything from massages to manicures/pedicures to sound therapy, where you’ll be swept away by the reverberations of Tibetan gongs.
It’s dimly lit and full of plants, with plenty of comfy loveseats to relax in, a sparkling pool, hot tub, sauna, steam room, and cool-temperature room with lounge chairs.
Choose from cutting-edge treatments, such as Amplify Signature, in partnership with CBD brand OTO, £120 for 55 minutes.
It uses a bamboo roller and crystals to clear your mind and dispel worries.
Come back : The ground floor of the hotel is home to Moor & Mead, which offers modern takes on British classics.
For breakfast, a large selection of fresh fruits, cheeses, meats, cereals and pastries, as well as a cooked menu.
We opted for kimchi and cheese toast, £7.50, and buttermilk pancakes with maple syrup and whipped butter, £10.
For lunch and dinner, expect fine comfort food – we loved the truffled hummus with flatbread, £5.50, and the herb roast chicken with aioli chips, £15.
We shared the brownie with vanilla ice cream, 6, but frankly we should have ordered one each.
To book: Double rooms cost from £199 per night including breakfast (Montcalmeast.com).
The new way to become a day spa
How to enjoy a luxury hotel at a lower cost…Dayuse.co.uk lets you book the UK’s best hotels during the day for up to 75% less than overnight.
We spent a relaxing day at the Leonardo Royal Hotel London City, enjoying a swim, sauna and steam room before relaxing in the ultra-comfortable suite and ordering room service – and we can therefore recommend it! From £99, 9am-5pm (Dayuse.co.uk).