Spa review: Macdonald Bath Spa Hotel

The Macdonald Bath Spa Hotel

The Macdonald Bath Spa Hotel - Credit: Archant

Catherine Courtenay hits a feel-good plateau amid the elegant surroundings of an iconic Bath hotel

A visit to a spa comes with the expectation of mind and body relaxation, a feeling of being transported, however briefly, from the stresses of everyday life to a place of peace.

With this in mind, arriving at the Macdonald Bath Spa Hotel certainly sets the scene.

The drive sweeps around the hotel’s mature landscaped gardens, up to its grand main entrance. It’s in a beautiful position, with views across the city to the distant hills. The original house was built in 1835 in a Greek revival style by a retired Indian Army general. It’s been through several hands since then, once a boys’ school, then a nurses’ home, before finally becoming a hotel in 1912. A £22 million renovation, completed in 1990, restored the fabric and more importantly the essence of Bath grandeur, associated with the building.

It’s spacious and elegant throughout; walking into the entrance hall you know you are in a special place.

This slightly otherworldly feeling continues to the spa. Laid out within the lower floor rooms of the building, it’s a calm and quiet space, but with plenty of treatment rooms. There’s a wide choice of Elemis treatments, and massages are tailored to suit – whether that’s light and soothing, or a firm, deep tissue approach. They say that massage has immense benefits for both body and mind, and as tensions are eased and knots worked away, you realise there’s no better way to understand and care for your own body. As well as outlining the products they’ve used, the therapists also make a few recommendations to help maintain the resulting feel-good plateau you find yourself on. To finish there’s a few minutes in the softly lit relaxation room before perhaps a swim, making the most of the hydro and whirlpools – both indoor and out.

Staying at the hotel, and dining in the graceful surrounds of its Vellore restaurant is a treat and makes for a luxurious short break. It’s so close to the city centre, but you’ll probably be content with a stroll around the grounds or over to the nearby Holburne Museum. Equally, you can enjoy a light lunch or coffee in the hotel’s courtyard terrace or under cover of the striking colonnade – as with the restaurant, you’ll find great service with classic food, beautifully fresh and made with care and panache.

Spa special offer...

An Indulgent Spa Day includes one 55-minute Elemis Couture Touch treatment, full use of the spa facilities with slippers and fluffy robes, a glass of prosecco and cream tea, along with a £5 spa retail voucher and 20% off additional pre-booked treatments. From £69pp. Find out more here.

To find out more, or to book your spa treatment, visit the Macdonald Bath Spa Hotel website.

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