The Best Spa Retreats in the Cotswolds, UK

Cowley Manor
Cowley Manor | Courtesy of Cowley Manor / Expedia
Photo of Emma Gibbins
27 November 2020

If a break in the Cotswolds doesn’t already feel indulgent, book a spa retreat. When you’re not admiring the babbling brooks and old stone churches of this picturesque region, fill your days with Ayurvedic treatments and revitalising therapies – or master the art of doing nothing at all.

The Greenway Hotel & Spa

Spa Hotel, Luxury
Map View
The Greenway Hotel & Spa
Courtesy of The Greenway Hotel & Spa / Expedia | Courtesy of The Greenway Hotel & Spa / Expedia

Make a weekend of it when you sample the exquisite spa at this 16th-century Elizabethan manor house just outside Cheltenham. Exposed brickwork and rustic beams give the spa a distinctly rural feel but the alfresco hot tub, Champagne Nail Bar, ESPA treatments and hydrotherapy pool up the glamour quota. Book a plush room at the hotel to fall straight into bed afterwards.

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Barnsley House

Spa Hotel, Luxury
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Barnsley House Hotel
Courtesy of Barnsley House Hotel / Expedia
If you peek through the tumbling wisteria enveloping the famous gardens of Barnsley House, you might spot its hideaway spa. Dreamily romantic, it draws inspiration from the outdoor sanctuary it calls home, with tables crafted from tree trunks and fresh lavender placed on treatment beds. Recharge in the spa lounge or outdoor hydrotherapy pool where, in summer, sunshine-yellow flowers burst into bloom amid topiary hedges.
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Wyck Hill House Hotel And Spa

Luxury, Hotel, Spa Hotel
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Fresh air, sumptuous dinners and views across the Windrush Valley are bonus extras when you visit the spa at the four-star Wyck Hill House Hotel. Just outside Stow-on-the-Wold, this 18th-century property has 20ha (50 acres) of spectacular grounds to explore, plus a spa with a steam room, a sauna and six treatment rooms – including one for couples. Choose an ELEMIS or VOYA treatment or book a spa day including full afternoon tea or lunch with wine.

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The Lygon Arms

Boutique Hotel
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The Lygon Arms
Courtesy of The Lygon Arms / Expedia

The Lygon Arms is one of Britain’s most historic inns, having welcomed the likes of King Charles I and Oliver Cromwell and featuring a 17th-century etching of John Trevis’s name above its entrance. Set within 3 acres (1ha) of tranquil gardens is the hotel’s luxury spa. Relax in its 13m (43ft) indoor pool – where grand pillars supporting a raised walkway give it the feel of a Victorian bathhouse – or book an all-out spa day, complete with a nutrient-rich lunch at the Spa Kitchen & Bar.

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Kings Head Hotel

Boutique Hotel
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Kings Head Hotel
Courtesy of Kings Head Hotel / Expedia

Escape from it all at the extraordinary spa within this popular 14th-century inn at the very centre of Cirencester. The spa is in a series of vaulted rooms that once made up the building’s cellars, and its candlelit tranquillity is the perfect antidote to a busy life. Unwind in the infrared sauna, hot tub, steam room and experience shower then splurge on a Decléor treatment for a well-deserved pampering.

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Calcot and Spa

Spa Hotel, Luxury
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Set in a quiet corner of Calcot Manor’s 89-ha (220-acre) grounds is the most opulent spa in the Cotswolds. In keeping with the theme of contemporary country living, the spa employs a crackling open fireplace, ensuring an atmosphere of intimate tranquillity. Soak in the adjacent hot tub – which sits in a lavender-lined courtyard – with a glass of fizz while choosing from the treatment menu. Once you’ve worked up an appetite, feast on dishes such as gilt-head bream with crushed new potatoes and vadouvan masala velouté at the Conservatory.
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Cotswold House Hotel and Spa

Boutique Hotel
Map View
Cotswold House Hotel & Spa
Courtesy of Cotswold House Hotel & Spa / Expedia | Courtesy of Cotswold House Hotel & Spa / Expedia

At the end of the garden of a Grade II-listed Regency townhouse, the Cotswold House Hotel, a tranquil spa occupies its former coach house. Here, you can indulge in aromatic Decléor treatments before relaxing in a hydrotherapy pool and steam room. As the daylight fades, while away the hours on the hotel’s serene terrace with your pick of a spectacularly well-stocked collection of gins – including one that’s exclusive to the hotel.

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Cowley Manor

Spa Hotel, Luxury
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Cowley Manor
Courtesy of Cowley Manor / Expedia

At the upscale but unpretentious Cowley Manor, you can benefit from facials and massages exclusive to its award-winning C-Side Spa, including its original Cloud 9 treatment, which combines aromatherapy, qi energy balancing, reflexology and acupressure. Take a dip in the 17m (56ft), slate-lined indoor pool or the elegant outdoor pool – both are heated year-round. Outside where the lush meadows stretch into the distance, relax with a drink on your pick of sleek sunloungers.

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  • Hatherley Manor Hotel and Spa

    Spa Hotel
    Map View
    Hatherley Manor Hotel & Spa
    Courtesy of Hatherley Manor Hotel & Spa / Expedia | Courtesy of Hatherley Manor Hotel & Spa / Expedia

    Close to the well-heeled region of Cheltenham, you’ll find this attractive 17th-century manor – the colour of copper, and flanked by a walled garden and lush orchard. The Spa at Hatherley Manor is inspired by the Cotswolds’ heritage and takes full advantage of its rural setting in the heart of the rolling Gloucestershire countryside, with an indoor swimming pool sporting floor-to-ceiling windows. A thermal suite with experience showers, an ice fountain and a tepidarium add to the spa’s peacefulness.

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    Dormy House

    Spa Hotel
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    Wander through Dormy House’s honey-hued facade to discover a perfect rural retreat full of homely corners. Big, stone fireplaces, flagstone floors and, in keeping with the Nordic origins of its owners, Scandi-chic furnishings dot the hotel’s interiors. The luxury spa has several rooms and suites, where neat rows of massage oils infused with ginger, bergamot and geranium line the shelves. Adding to the pamper quotient is a sleek 16m (52ft) infinity-edged pool lit by candles encased in glass, a thermal suite and a terrace hot tub.
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    Lucknam Park Hotel and Spa

    Spa Hotel, Hotel, Luxury, $$$
    Map View
    Lucknam Park
    Courtesy of Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa / Expedia | Courtesy of Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa / Expedia

    Despite its grandeur, Lucknam Park is no stuffy hotel. It possesses a relaxed elegance and feels more like a home away from home than a Palladian mansion, thanks to country house-style interiors and snug dog-friendly rooms. Luxury comes in the form of the hotel’s award-winning spa, cut from polished cream stone and housing a Japanese salt room and heated outdoor therapy pool, which is accessible via an avenue of lime and beech trees.

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    Thyme

    Spa Hotel
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    Thyme
    Courtesy of Thyme / Booking.com

    Scattered over Southrop Manor’s 150-acre (61ha) estate is a collection of restored 17th-century cottages housing everything from an on-site farm and fruitful kitchen garden to a state-of-the-art cookery school. For head-to-toe indulgence, book an exclusive treatment at Meadow Spa, the only one in the UK to stock British natural beauty brand Aurelia Probiotic Skincare. Among its most popular treatments is a natural facelift, which uses a combination of hypnotic deep-muscle rolling and pressure-point massage to relieve wrinkle-causing tension.

    Additional reporting by Siobhan Grogan.

    These recommendations were updated on November 27, 2020 to keep your travel plans fresh.