Hand-picked places to eat, stay, shop & cook in the South West

Multiple gourmasms

Published on June 19, 2017
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Call off the search, we’ve found some of the South West’s most exquisite spa treatments – with clean eating and gourmet indulgence – to take your summer to the next level


C-Side at Cowley Manor

This contemporary-cool country house hotel near Cheltenham puts its luxury spa at the very heart of its design. C-Side is a gorgeous glass-fronted wellness centre that snuggles into the side of a hill and uses its own Green & Spring products. There are two pools, treatment rooms, gym, steam room and sauna.

Bliss is a Scientific Organics Blue Poppy Enzyme Brightening Facial designed to combat sun damage. It’s 70 per cent organic so we reckon you might just be tempted to lick your own face once it’s slathered with blue poppy seeds, kombucha and enzymes of papaya, raspberry and mushroom.

Steamy scenario: a blissful warm bathe in the stunning outdoor pool.

Swoon over a champagne afternoon tea with egg (yogurt mousse and mango compote) and soldiers (coconut brioche).

Clean eating: the three-course set lunch menu has plenty of bloat-free options including wild mushroom and roasted onion tart with watercress salad.

Boringdon Hall

Boringdon Hall

Boringdon Hall is an Elizabethan manor house offering decadence in a dramatic historic setting plus a new and futuristic Gaia Spa, kitted out with Finnish sauna, crystal salt steam room and laconium herbal sauna.

Bliss is a Gaia Four Hands Massage. Why have one therapist when you can have a synchronised four-hander from two?

Steamy scenario: a dip in the indoor hydrotherapy pool leading to an outdoor swim-through with countryside views.

Swoon over pea, morel and asparagus fricassee with fried quail eggs. It’s just one of the outstanding dishes from head chef and food Reader Award Chef of the Year, Scott Paton served in the atmospheric three AA rosette Gallery Restaurant.

Clean eating: the grazing menu at the Spatisserie offers smart-carb options such as creamy sweet potato risotto with chamomile marinated red peppers.

The Scarlet

The Scarlet

Famed for its quirky design, gourmet food and restorative Ayurvedic getaways, The Scarlet at Mawgan Porth on the north Cornish coast offers a back-to-nature approach to wellbeing. Tented treatment rooms and pods suspended from the ceiling for ‘utter relaxation’ are some of the indoor attractions, while outside there’s a reed strewn pool and two wood-fired hot tubs.

Bliss is the couple’s rhassoul treatment. Okay we know it’s supposed to be a great for the skin but don’t underestimate the satisfaction of slathering your partner head to toe with squelchy mud.

Steamy scenario: being immersed in a cliff-top tub with a glass of bubbly while gazing over the wild Atlantic breakers.

Swoon over stone bass with mussel kievs as you admire the sunset over Mawgan Porth beach.

Clean eating: drool over local veggies prepared with visionary flair. There are plenty of non-meat dishes on offer too, including char grilled organic fennel with truffled goat’s curd, hazelnuts and Cornish honey.

Barnsley House

Barnsley House

A winding path takes you from the main house, through an exquisite garden to steps that carry you down to the spa. Wooden beams, Cotswold stone and plants add a rustic chic ambiance to this secluded haven near Cirencester with views over the gardens and countryside.

Bliss is everyone remarking on how ‘fresh’ you look without having resorted to knives or needles. CACI Wrinkle Comb treatment claims to be the first non-invasive alternative to collagen or dermal fillers and smooths out deep lines and wrinkles.

Steamy scenario: drinking in the fresh country air of surrounding meadows while bathing in a heated outdoor hydrotherapy pool.

Swoon over a G&Tea. The afternoon indulgence of finger sandwiches and scones is served with the hotel’s gin of the week.

Clean eating: lighter dishes like pickled beetroot with goat’s cheese and walnut are on offer for calorie dodgers.

The Gainsborough Park Spa

Tapping into the natural thermal springs of Britain’s most celebrated spa city, this East-meets-West watery wonderland is a pampering paradise. Naturally heated waters are the big lure at The Gainsborough. Beneath a stunning glass atrium, its Spa Village offers thermal pools, invigorating massage jets, ice alcoves and thermal fountains.

Bliss is a Malaysian massage called Campur-Campur. Glorious aromas of lemongrass and pandan leaves fill the air as tired limbs are treated with steamed pouches suffused with herbs.

Steamy scenario: performing yoga in a heated thermal pool. Aquasana will take your stretching routine to a whole new level.

Swoon over dishes devised by Michelin starred German TV chef, Johann Lafer. His gourmet philosophy of ‘dining without borders’ sees South West faves like Creedy Carver duck given an Asian twist with confit leg spring roll and plum puree.

Clean eating: if you’re keen to be lean, try the superfood-laden spa menu offering the likes of beetroot quinoa and poached salmon followed by raspberry and strawberry chia seed pot.


Lucknam Park

Thermal treatment cabins including Japanese salt, amethyst, aromatic steam and a tepidarium are just some of the good reasons to while away a day or six at this glam spa, the perfect complement to the elegant beauty of luxurious Lucknam Park near Bath. The Well-being House, meanwhile, is a chance to take part in yoga, Pilates and sunlight therapy treatments.

Bliss is being daubed from top to toe with sweet-smelling goat butter before being cocooned and submerged on a buoyant bed and left to float in complete serenity.

Steamy scenario: chilling out in a bubbling pool of steaming water while taking in acres of greenery and woodland lit by dappled sunshine. There are three watery havens to choose from: a 20 metre pool for swimming, an outdoor saltwater plunge pool and a hot indoor/outdoor hydrotherapy pool.

Swoon over sumptuous dishes like pot roast squab pigeon, caramelised turnip, pickled cherries and pistachio in the Michelin starred Restaurant Hywel Jones by Lucknam Park.

Clean eating: The Brasserie is the place to avoid carb bingeing with plenty of light options. The lemongrass and ginger poached chicken is delish with avocado, pineapple, honey and poppy seed yogurt.

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