When it comes to a little TLC, nothing beats checking into a spa hotel for some indulgent pampering. Luckily, besides scenic ribbons of lake, great hiking among the dales and fells, as well as market towns to explore, the Lake District offers some of the most luxe lodgings in England and the UK, all complete with top-notch treatments. Here’s our guide to the best spa hotels in the Lake District – all bookable on Culture Trip.
A magnificent Lake District spa hotel, the Netherwood is a stately country house set amid trees and lush topiary. It’s a Grade-II-listed Victorian mansion, surrounded by 6ha (15 acres) of woodland and landscaped gardens with big views across the wide expanse of Morecambe Bay. In the lavish spa, you will go on a “thermal journey”, relaxing in the sunken hot tubs, the glass-walled sauna, steam and salt-inhalation rooms, enjoying the monsoon, mood-lit showers, or having your cares kneaded away in the treatment rooms.
On the shores of beautiful Lake Windermere – England’s largest lake – with boat-dotted waters merging with the distant horizon, Macdonald Old England is a graceful place perched on the water’s edge, overlooking rolling gardens, private jetties and moorings on the lake: many rooms have balconies if you’re looking for a dreamily romantic lakeside seat. Another great Lake District spa hotel, Macdonald Old England’s wellness treats include a large indoor pool and the chance to unwind with the luxurious Elemis treatments.
The Wordsworth is another great Lake district hotel with a spa. It’s set in the lush surroundings of Grasmere, the eponymous poet’s former stomping ground, and the surroundings are beautiful enough to inspire a few new reams of poetry. It has a grandly-colonnaded and mosaic-lined heated swimming pool, with windows overlooking the lush countryside, plus a sauna and jacuzzi. A Cumbrian mansion surrounded by emerald-green farmlands, this hotel features rooms with chandeliers and shiny fabrics, with suites verging on the baroque, with four-poster beds and heavy wood beams.
With its bubbling hot tubs and pool with jets, steam rooms and saunas, this Lake District hotel with spa can soothe away any knots you may have and pummel you into blissful oblivion. Staying in the spa apartments you have direct access to these whirlpools, while there’s a splendid array of other rooms, most thrillingly the three-level Penthouse Suite, with a rooftop hot tub overlooking Lake Windermere. Many of the regular rooms have hot tubs too, and more soul-soothing lake views.
Set above the rolling hills over Derwentwater, this hotel was created with relaxation in mind. Its sprawling spa complements the extensive country house retreat, complete with Elemis and La Sultane De Saba treatments, and counting a thermal suite among its amenities. Its pièce de résistance, however, is the 16m (52ft) hydro pool. Sink into its neck jets and underwater loungers, admire views of the Catbells mountain range from its huge hot tub and finish up in the glass-fronted Finnish sauna. Bliss.
The only Aveda Spa in the Lake District, this holistic haven revels in its prime position right on Lake Windermere. Start your day with freshly squeezed OJ by the lake and a quick dip in the pool before slipping into a fluffy robe in preparation for your treatment. For the ultimate luxury, opt for a two-hour full-body massage and Lakeside prescription facial before indulging in a quintessentially British afternoon tea. You’ll head back to your room with bright eyes and glowing skin.
With its peaceful gardens, riverside setting and exquisite cuisine, Rothay Garden is the epitome of countryside chic. Its Riverside Spa is proof that the best things can sometimes come in small packages; reserved exclusively for use by overnight hotel guests, the spa has no treatment rooms, but it’s the perfect spot to relax on heated loungers by floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the sprawling fells. Massages, on the other hand, can be enjoyed in the privacy of your own room – just make sure you book in advance.
Hidden away by the lakes of Windermere, Low Wood Bay is the ultimate secluded retreat – albeit one with luxurious rooms, huge deep-soaking bathtubs and a well-equipped spa. Using products made with natural and pure ingredients, it offers a truly holistic approach to skincare – treat yourself for up to 90 minutes of bliss with a Berry & Birch tailor-made massage, and you won’t regret it. Short on time? Sink into a rustic leather chair in the Snug for an express mani, pedi, massage or facial.
Surrounded by 162ha (400 acres) of gardens, deer park and private woodland, this luxe waterside retreat offers a huge selection of bespoke spa treatments to indulge in. Post-massage, relax in the glacial infinity pool with a glass of champagne, join a yoga class or take in the magnificent fell views from the comfort of the hot tub. If you’re planning a special occasion, you can book out the whole spa just for yourself and up to seven friends.
Traditional on the outside and contemporary on the inside, a trip to the Daffodil Hotel & Spa is just what a spa break should be. Its award-winning spa partners with the exclusive European skincare house Germaine de Capuccini to offer a heavenly range of treatments – try the Walkers’ Leg Therapy to recover from all your hiking. The service is impeccable, and there’s a thermal pool, steam room and sauna to relax in if you want to make a day of it.
Abigail Blasi contributed additional reporting to this article.
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