Time for a staycation? Here's 12 of the UK's best wellness retreats and day spas

Updated: Oct 16, 2020

Need some time to focus on yourself for a few days without straying too far from home?  Looking to avoid burnout amid the pandemic?  Why not escape and enjoy some well deserved rest, relaxation and rejuvenation at one of the UK’s best wellness retreats or day spas. 


Facial - spa treatment
Facial - spa treatment

1. Cowshed

Part of the Soho House Group, the award-winning Cowshed’s day spas are the place to head to if you’re looking for the ultimate wellness experience.  You’ll get to choose from a selection of mood-enhancing luxurious therapeutic treatments in indulgent spaces, that’ll leave you feeling revived, rejuvenated and pampered.  Cowshed’s own-brand products are used within each spa, so you’ll also benefit from being pampered with a range of high quality organic products produced using wildcrafted plant extracts and premium pure essential oils to nourish the mind, body and soul.  Cowshed spas can be found in various locations across London, including Carnaby Street, Shoreditch House, Primrose Hill (my personal favourite!), The Ned and Selfridges - Oxford Street.  If you’re a Soho House member then you can also access the ultra luxurious member’s only Babington House in Somerset and Soho Farmhouse in Oxfordshire.  Prices vary depending on your chosen treatment; the full spa menu can be viewed on the Cowshed website.


Spa - relaxing salts
Spa - relaxing salts

2. Agua Spa London

Located under the ultra modern and iconic Sea Containers hotel (formerly known as the Mondrian), Agua Spa’s treatments focus on spirituality, well-being, and the mind-body connection.  If you’re looking for a sanctuary to kickstart your self-care routine, you can indulge in therapeutic treatments, hot stone massages, a facials, manicure or pedicure. Agua’s ‘Glamour Room’ can be hired for a private party in tranquil surroundings for up to 4 guests, including a combination of manicures, pedicures, scalp massage and mini-facials whilst you and your friends are treated to champagne and canapés. Visit the Sea Containers (Agua Spa) website for further details. 3. Sopwell House, St. Albans, Hertfordshire Located in the heart of the Hertfordshire countryside, Sopwell House is a luxury country house hotel with a private members spa, offering relaxing spa breaks.  The spa is separated into two distinct areas: ‘Cottonmill’ and the even more exclusive and adult-only spa ‘The Club at Cottonmill’.  Sopwell House hotel residents receive complimentary access to the ‘Cottonmill’ facilities, including an indoor pool, studio, sauna, steam room, two vitality pools, a poolside terrace and the ‘Rose Relaxation Room’.  Spa treatments include the use of Espa and Elemis products.  Access to ‘The Club at Cottonmill’ facilities is limited to residents on Club packages and a select group of members only; the facilities include access to a Deep Relaxation Room, a Whisper Room, new spa gardens and a Garden Room.  N.B. Due to covid-19 government guidelines, spa treatments of 90 minutes are not currently available and all saunas and steam rooms remain closed for the time being.  Visit the Sopwell House Cottonmill Spa website for further details.  4. Lime Wood Hotel, Lyndhurst, New Forest Nestled in the heart of the beautiful New Forest in Hampshire, you’ll find the boutique Lime Wood hotel is part of the same group as ‘The Pig’.  The hotel’s Herb House Spa facilities are only currently open to hotel residents and spa members; an advance booking system via the ‘MyWellness App’ is available so that guests can book to use the hotel’s indoor lap pool, hydro pool, outdoor hot pool and fitness classes.  Whilst the hotel is currently unable to offer Spa Days at Herb House spa, you can still treat yourself to lunch or dinner at the Raw & Cured food bar, or book yourself in for a luxurious treatment, such as a massage, facial, manicure or pedicure.  N.B. Lime Wood’s sauna, steam room and mud house will remain closed until further notice, due to government guidelines. Visit the Lime Wood Hotel website.


Relaxing candles
Relaxing candles

5. Grayshott Health Spa, Greyshott, Surrey If mindful walking is how you like to unwind, you’ll love exploring Greyshott spa’s peaceful 47-acre estate in Surrey.  The spa was named the best wellness retreat in England at the 2019 World Spa Awards, so if you’re looking for natural therapies or indulging in a range of beauty and lifestyle treatments, look no further.  Greyshott also offers outdoor Personal Training sessions, or you could also opt to de-stress by joining a Sound Healing or a Breathing session too.  N.B. Grayshott’s Health Day Retreats and some of the spa facilities are currently unavailable due to compliance with Government guidelines.  The steam sauna, cold plunge pools and the outdoor swimming pool will remain closed until further notice.  Take a look at the Grayshott Health Spa website. 6. Grantley Hall, Ripon, North Yorkshire Looking for a spa break with a touch of luxury?  A true Yorkshire gem, Grantley Hall is part of Relais & Chateaux; the luxury hotel and wellness retreat combines 17th century heritage and glamour for an opulent experience. The hotel has recently been awarded ‘Best Newcomer’ in the Condé Nast Johansens Awards for Excellence 2020 and the Oliver Awards 2020.  Due to Covid-19, the hotel is currently unable to offer spa days, however, you can still book a wellness retreat, indulge in a treatment in the Three Graces Spa, or enjoy a nutritious lunch in the Three Graces Spa Lounge. Visit the Grantley Hall website for further details. 7. Daylesford Organic Farm, Gloucestershire If you’re feeling in need of TLC and fancy an escape to the heart of the Cotswolds, Daylesford Organic Farm offers a range of restorative retreats for a truly relaxing break.  Daylesford’s Bamford Wellness Spa offers a calming day retreat to nurture inner peace where you can indulge in treatments such as the luxurious de-stress massage or the invigorating hot and cold stones massage.  If you’d like to stay for longer, Daylesford’s luxury farmhouse cottages are the perfect place to stay and if you have more time available then you can enjoy yoga, pilates, or meditation sessions too, or you can check out the cookery school, restaurant or organic farm shop. Take a look at the Daylesford Organic Farm website. 8. Platinum Healing, Sussex (Juice Detox and Yoga Retreat) Described as ‘one of the Chicest Places to Stay in Britain’ by The Times and ‘one of the best juice detox retreats in the world’ by The Telegraph, the Platinum Juice Detox and Yoga Retreat is designed to detoxify the body to restore health and achieve balance, to aid positive wellbeing. Created by Kate Tyler, a World Renowned Clinical Hypnotherapist and Leading Authority in Self Healing and Personal Transformation, the retreat is located in north-east Sussex and combines an invigorating juice detox with daily classes such as yoga and meditation. Find out more about Platinum Healing.

Yoga retreat
Yoga retreat

9. EcoYoga, Scotland (Yoga Retreat)

Enjoy getting off-grid?  The EcoYoga wellness retreat in the Scottish Highlands could be exactly the escapism that you’re looking for in the current climate.  The tranquil riverside retreat offers yoga retreats and wild bathing to quieten your mind and allow you to unwind, so you leave feeling refreshed and rejuvenated. Powered by a hydro turbine and large bank of solar panels, it truly is an eco-hub, and in addition, the vegetarian meals served at the retreat are created using ingredients grown in the site’s organic garden. To relax and unwind in the Scottish Hills, visit the EcoYoga website.


10. Secret Warriors, The Peak District (Yoga Retreat)

Located in The Peak District, Secret Warriors offers a range of tailored retreats, designed specifically for professional women to enable them to feel stronger, happier and healthier.  A typical stay includes prosecco and homemade treats on arrival, a relaxing treatment, dinner and drinks, time to relax and unwind, a wellbeing session such as a guided meditation, yoga or Pilates class, plus a dedicated host, accommodation in a beautiful venue and a healthy breakfast. If you’re looking to escape to The Peak District, visit Secret Warriors.


11. The Arrigo Programme, Somerset (Life Coaching and Therapy Retreat)

If you’re looking for a haven designed by a qualified and talented psychotherapist and biodynamic psychologist, look no further than Fiona Arrigo’s retreat in Somerset.  Fiona’s intuitive understanding of the need to reconnect with ourselves led to the design and development of The Arrigo Programme. Today it has evolved to ensure that individuals are able to achieve better health, balance and happiness.  Find out more about The Arrigo Programme.

Meditation
Meditation

12. A Place to Heal (Online Sessions)

If getting away isn’t possible for you at the moment, A Place to Heal is currently offering a range of sessions online.  You can gain access to 1-1 consultations and classes including meditation, vinyasa flow, and herbal medicine for healing, all from the comfort of your own home. Find out more on the A Place to Heal website.