Best Spa Breaks In The UK

Jun 27, 2018


Alasdair McLellan

Sometimes the only way to truly relax is to leave London behind and escape to the countryside for a peaceful couple of days. If you can't abscond for a trip abroad, take the staycation route and pay one of the UK's most luxurious spa hotels a visit - whether you're surrounded by ponies in the idyllic Lime Wood Hotel in the New Forest or enjoying the rooftop pool at Cameron House on the banks of Loch Lomond. Here, Vogue rounds up the very best spa breaks in the UK for you to escape to.

  • Dormy House Hotel, Worcestershire
    Dormy House Hotel, Worcestershire

    Wind your way down picturesque country lanes, past Cotswold-stone cottages, and eventually you'll reach the warm welcome of Dormy House Hotel - a cosy converted farmhouse that's about as British as you can get. Accommodation options range from roomy suites to the adorable Rose Cottage, complete with private hot tub, and the House Spa is utterly luxurious. As well as an indoor infinity pool, outdoor hydrotherapy hot tub and three thermal suites, the treatments on offer are truly exemplary. The fitness studio is well kitted out too, but if the weather's nice it would feel foolish not to take advantage of the glorious Cotswolds setting - ask for a map at reception and take a walk across hilltops dotted with sheep. Afterwards, reward yourself with a meal at one of the restaurants on-site - The Garden Room is particularly special. LN

  • Lime Wood Hotel, Hampshire
    Lime Wood Hotel, Hampshire

    Just over 90 minutes from London by train, Lime Wood Hotel’s idyllic New Forest setting makes for the most picturesque of countryside retreats, complete with wild ponies and donkeys roaming the entrance. From opulent but cosy rooms in the main house to secluded cabins and lodges with log fires and private patios, it is almost too tempting to relax in your room for the entire stay. However, with a spa that features a peaceful rooftop herb garden (where you can take part in morning yoga or meditation should you wish), a hydro-pool, steam room and sauna overlooking the forest and an outdoor hotpool and mud house - not to mention the warmest service, a pretty courtyard bar and a restaurant headed up by Michelin-starred chef Angela Hartnett and co-head Luke Holder - the rest of Lime Wood is well worth your time too. KB

  • Archerfield House, North Berwick
    Archerfield House, North Berwick

    Archerfield House is a hidden gem. Stay in the main house or a self-contained lodge in the 550-acre grounds, and wander to the Fletcher's Cottage spa for a Sisley Supreme Anti-Ageing Facial to restore tone and radiance, or a Sisley Body Treatment involving deep muscle relief. Complement these with a session in one of the private bath huts, each equipped with hand-harvested seaweed for a potent detoxifying boost, or a hot-stone massage using Beatitude, Scotland's own luxury essential-oil brand. Just 40 minutes' drive from Edinburgh, it's the perfect distance for an astonishingly recharging weekend. LW

  • Calcot Manor, Gloucestershire
    Calcot Manor, Gloucestershire

    The word "Manor" in Calcot Manor is slightly misleading, encouraging visitors to expect a stuffy intimidating house, when nothing could be further from the truth. Calcot Village would be more appropriate to describe the layout and feel, since the accommodation is made up of 35 quaint cottages, barns and outbuildings, all grouped around the rustic main building. Thoughtfully preserved on the outside and completely modernised on the inside, the rooms provide exactly what most city visitors want from a country retreat: the appearance of rural living, but with wi-fi. The spa - one of the main reasons that Calcot is almost always full, even on a rainy midweek day - occupies another of the cluster of farm buildings and boasts an indoor pool, treatment rooms, lounge, and lavender-surrounded outdoor hot tub overlooking an open wood fire. Treatments focus on complete relaxation using Aromatherapy Associates products - although CACI therapies are also on offer - and the 45-minute Rose Facial is so relaxing it feels twice as long. Time moves more slowly in the Cotswolds - which is just as we like it. LM

  • Babington House, Somerset
    Babington House, Somerset

    Serene and secluded with green grassy fields that stretch far and wide for 18 acres, Babington House is the ideal escape from the city. Part of the Soho House group (consider also Soho Farmhouse, the second countryside spa venue for the group, opened in 2015), the Grade II-listed hotel also boasts a selection of standalone rooms inside a walled garden - each comes complete with its own steam room and private hot tub. Spend time on the tennis courts, in the pool or that stunning British countryside (a real indulgence if you’re used to London living) when you’re not taking a treatment at the Cowshed spa. We recommend the Moody Massage and Full Body Wrap, which will take away any stress that might have followed you from the train (if you aren't driving it’s a two-hour ride to Bath Spa from central London followed by a 25-minute car ride – Babington House can arrange for a car). JB

  • Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa, Wiltshire
    Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa, Wiltshire

    After driving down a mile-long driveway lined with beech and lime trees, Lucknam Park is no disappointment when you eventually reach it. A Palladian mansion just six miles from the beautiful city of Bath, Lucknam boasts 42 individually-styled rooms and suites, 500 acres of land (which you can explore on horseback or by bike, should you wish to), a Michelin-starred restaurant and a spa featuring a 20-metre pool, hydrotherapy pool and five thermal cabins. Guests can choose from a list of treatments using products from Espa, visit the gym or even book an appointment at the hairdressing salon during their stay. The setting is idyllic, the hotel and facilities utterly luxurious and the service second to none – a weekend’s stay feels like the ultimate country escape. LN

  • The Grove Hotel, Hertfordshire
    The Grove Hotel, Hertfordshire

    Tucked away in what feels like the most quaint, quiet English countryside (it is, in fact, only a 40 minute drive out of central London), The Grove Hertfordshire is almost too close to home to be safe from temptation mid-week. Boasting four different restaurant areas and grounds that are as luscious as its gourmet breakfast (served in bed, naturally, eaten propped up with cloud-like pillows and silky soft linens), it is the Sequoia spa that is the jewel in its crown. Using Natura Bissé products, their formulas rich in active ingredients, its body treatments are some of the best you'll experience. A special mention goes to The Orangery Experience - who would have thought feeling like a citrus soufflé would be so invigorating? It’s the perfect precursor to a day spent walking around the expansive grounds, culminating in a glass from their excellent wine list. SC

  • Cowley Manor, Gloucestershire
    Cowley Manor, Gloucestershire

    With 55 acres of woodland and meadows for guests to enjoy, Cowley Manor is a firm favourite with Cotswolds-frequenters. Its C-Side Spa makes it an even more enticing proposition, especially given the new menu of Emergin C Scientific Organics treatments that utilise the latest in skincare technology to provide hard-hitting, results-driven facials. High points are the Anti-Ageing Apple Stem Cell Treatment (100 per cent of clients noticed improvement in the appearance of crow's feet), and the Detox Facial, which uses a range of potent super-ingredients such as kombucha, seaweed, French clay and grape extract. LW