Bordeaux has more going for it than just great wine. Fabulous restaurants, stunning architecture and sublime museums are all essential elements of a visit to remember – as is an afternoon spent in a fabulous spa. Bordeaux has no shortage of them, and some of the finest are in hotels. So, get ready to check in and unwind – here are the best spa hotels in Bordeaux, France, bookable on Culture Trip.
The setting is one-of-a-kind, inside Bordeaux’s former Institute of Zoology. It’s an opulent pile with a discreet courtyard garden, a swish oyster bar and trendy rooms, all botanical prints and exposed stone. But among the perks, which include a rooftop sun trap with loungers, is the first-rate, ultra-stylish spa: frothing hot tubs, a steamy hammam, decadent massages and a dedicated al fresco spa terrace lined in plush tropical greenery. You’ve got everything you need right here for a shoulder-slouching afternoon of pampering.
Moments from Bordeaux’s rambling Place des Quinconces, a vast square on the banks of the Garonne, Hotel de Sèze radiates old-world French atmosphere. From the book-lined lounge, complete with crackling fire, to the plush bedrooms with loud wallpapers, to the decadent Sunday brunches, everything here channels classic glamour, but with a distinct 21st-century twist. The spa is no exception, and you can hop from sensory shower to sauna, hammam to herbal tea room, feeling like a spoiled celeb. Fancy a workout? The gym is open 24 hours.
When you stay at La Belle Endormie, you’ll be able to idle away mornings strolling around Bordeaux’s photogenic botanical garden, a lush oasis on your doorstep. But that’s not the only benefit of a stay. When you book a stylish, contemporary room – all marble tables, parquet floors and cosy armchairs – you can also take advantage of the boutiquey spa, complete with an infrared sauna and a Balinese-inspired patio. Book in for a one-hour Mandala Chill massage, and you’ll emerge so relaxed you’ll forget you’re in the heart of a busy city.
You’ll get only the finest when you book into Villas Foch, a refined, luxurious hotel a short walk from the banks of the Garonne. It pulls out all the stops with immaculate bedrooms – panelled and parqueted, with accents of crisp white and gold – as well as its photogenic spiral staircases and an atmospheric bar, serving up (as you might expect) some of the region’s fine wines. A cave-like indoor pool space feels tranquil and secret, while the aromatic vapours of the sauna revive you after a day of exploring.
It doesn’t get more Bordeaux than this: a spa that invites you to bathe in wine. Just south of Bordeaux’s pretty centre, it’s a luxurious resort specialising in “vinotherapy”, a treatment programme that combines the benefits of hot spring water with the antioxidant advantages of grapes and vines. Follow up a red-wine bath (that’s right) with a Merlot wrap or a vine facial treatment – then, come evening, order a large glass of local red in the celebrated restaurant.
Bordeaux isn’t only about wine – and this resort, to the north of the city centre, really proves it, with its focus on all things golf. After you’ve swung those clubs around the two rolling courses that circle the hotel, sporting muscles will be ready for a soothing spell at the spa. Take a dip in the pool, lined in windows that let daylight spill in, then settle in for a bioenergetic detox massage, which oxygenates your body and makes you feel on top of the world.
What’s better than a pampering session in an elaborate spa? One that fully immerses you in nature. At Domaine de Raba, in the south of Bordeaux, treatments take place in a cosy wood cabin or open-air waterside pavilion positioned amid rolling parkland, so you can enjoy a body scrub to the sound of wild ducks splashing in a lake. There’s an indoor pool available for dips, whatever the weather, and a fabulous hotel restaurant in which to feast on salads or ceviche after your treatment.
Close to Bordeaux, but actually in Saint-Émilion, Grand Barrail will be worth the journey when you arrive to find this opulent château, immersed in manicured lawns and rows of vines. The spa is just as special, with multiple steam rooms, relaxation zones and treatments ranging from hot-stone massages to skin-softening scrubs. Treatment rooms come with big windows overlooking the vines, and there’s a sunny terrace where you can further unwind afterwards.