Relax and rejuvenate with these spa-inspired holiday ideas
National Spa Week takes place 31st October – 4th November: relax and rejuvenate with these spa-inspired holiday ideas around the world from Travel PR
Five-star Seaham Hall Partners with Cold Water Therapy Specialist to Bring the Wim Hof Method to its Serenity Spa This Winter – from £155 pp
For a coastal spa break without the crowds, five-star Seaham Hall on the Durham Heritage Coast, offers a grand, historic setting and is the perfect place to enjoy a little luxury and soothing spa time. This winter sees a new partnership with wellness business, XHayle, to bring The Wim Hof Method – the fitness trend sweeping the world – to the Serenity Spa. Taught by Breathwork and Cold Exposure Instructor Hayley Dorian, who trained with Wim Hof, the course is designed to provide myriad benefits including increased energy, better sleep and reduced stress levels, through three key principles – breathwork, the cold, and mindset. Each workshop includes a two-hour guided session, a plant-based lunch served in the Serenity Spa’s Ozone restaurant, followed by an afternoon cold water experience. The sessions cost £155 pp. Next date 11th December. To book, visit www.seaham-hall.co.uk.
Glow from the inside out – from £230 pn at Ashdown Park Hotel
The stress of day-to-day life catches up with all of us. National Spa Week is the perfect excuse to finally arrange that getaway with the girls, escape with a loved one, or simply sink into serenity with a treatment for one. Where better to enhance your overall sense of well-being than the luxurious surroundings of Ashdown Park Hotel & Country Club, in the heart of the Ashdown Forest AONB? Rejuvenate the skin with the Gua Sha Instant Lift Facial, which works to firm and contour the skin by stimulating lymphatic drainage and enhancing natural hydration leaving skin visibly smoother, tighter and more radiant (55 mins – £80). Whatever you feel your body needs, all the treatments and experiences at Ashdown Park Hotel have been masterfully designed to help create an unforgettable pampering experience best suited to you. Stay from £230 per night (based on two sharing) and enjoy a 10% discount when booking any spa treatment during the week (Monday-Thursday). www.ashdownpark.com or call 01342 824988.
Luxury seaside spa escape in Pembrokeshire – St Brides Hotel from £132 pppn
Perfectly for a spa weekend away, St Brides Spa Hotel near picturesque Saundersfoot is a contemporary hotel with 34 stylish bedrooms and a calming marine spa overlooking the beach. Offering an unforgettable spa experience with dramatic seascapes and bracing walks along the nearby coastal paths, couples and friends will enjoy a chance to relax and reconnect with a luxury spa escape. Feel thoroughly pampered with an overnight stay in a chic bedroom with a comfy bed, enjoy the rejuvenating Thermal Suite & Hydrotherapy Pool, the inviting outdoor infinity pool, and treatments in the award-winning spa. The Perfect Package is a spa treatment tailor-made to leave you feeling stress and tension free, including a 25-minute Back, Neck & Shoulder Massage and a 25-minute Express D-Vine Facial. Continue the break and dine on fresh and local seafood dishes with a three-course evening meal in the one AA Rosette cliff-top restaurant and relish in a Welsh breakfast in the morning. Prices start from £265 per room per night (two sharing). The Perfect Package is £85 pp. Contact St Brides Spa Hotel and Visit Pembrokeshire www.visitpembrokeshire.com.
“Out of office” this National Spa Week – from £250 pp with Pride of Britain hotels
Pride of Britain Hotels knows how important self-care, rest and relaxation are. Celebrating its 40th anniversary, the hotel collection has launched 40 new and exclusive serene sleep packages to choose from across the British Isles, so prepare to embark on a journey of rejuvenation. Dreamy packages include to a two-night stay at Seaham Hall on the Durham Heritage Coast, where guests will be treated with a five-course tasting menu, breakfast on both mornings, a Temple Spa gift in the suite upon arrival and a Repose aromatherapy facial each, which focuses on releasing tension and stress (75 mins); price from £560 pp (two sharing). Or, step into bliss at Talbooth House & Spa in Essex with its sweeping views of Dedham Vale and the Stour Valley. Indulge in a three-course dinner at Talbooth Restaurant, a 30-minute relaxing spa treatment, and the Three Bs at Bedtime (Sleep Journal, Bath & Shower Elixir, and Good Night tea); price from £250 pp (two sharing). To book, visit www.prideofbritainhotels.com or call 0800 089 3929.
Sami-inspired therapy and canine capability in Swedish Lapland – from £1,710 pp with Sunvil*
At Camp Ripan in Swedish Lapland, guests will have a spa experience unlike any other. In a land dusted with snow, 200 km above the Arctic Circle, guests perform the treatments at their own pace. Inspired by age-old Swedish and Sami culture, these medicinal traditions include a coffee scrub massage, a juniper salt and lemon foot bath, and a turnip body oiling. Add to this driving your own team of dogs across the Arctic wilderness, plus taking a snowmobile and learning to drill an ice hole for fishing, and it’s a spa break that guests will be thinking and talking about for a long time to come. The three-night Spa break in Swedish Lapland costs from £1,710 pp (two sharing), including direct flights (London) to Kiruna (via Stockholm), cabin accommodation with breakfast, and private transfers. Call AITO* member Sunvil on 020 8758 4722 (www.sunvil.co.uk).
Geothermal well-being with natural hot springs in Tuscany – from £168 pn with Yescapa
As travellers focus more on reconnecting with nature and their well-being, natural hot springs offer an all-year-round outdoor bathing experience to do both. What is surprising to some is that these hot springs can be found amongst the sun-drenched vineyards and ancient villages of Tuscany. The Fosso Bianco Hot Springs are natural pools and waterfalls in the village of Bagni San Filippo. Rich in mud deposits, they provide one of the best spa treatments that mother nature can offer. There are also the hot springs of Petriolo, located halfway between Siena and Grosseto. With warm waters around 42°C (107 F), it’s especially refreshing during the winter and interestingly, the pools are below the ruins of fortified thermal baths dating back to Roman times. Enzo’s Coachbuilt motorhome, in Fonte Laurentina, is ideal for this spa trip. This comfortable seven-berth 2017 Sun Living Lido is easy to drive, and features an inside shower, built-in toilet and refrigerator/freezer. The cost is from £672 for five days (£168 pn) in November 2022 including breakdown cover, two insured drivers and mileage allowance (200 km per day). Flights extra. Visit www.yescapa.co.uk.
The hiker’s choice of spa – The Faroe Islands from £120 pp
A unique group of islands in the North Atlantic, The Faroe Islands offer a rugged beauty you would find hard to experience anywhere else in the world. With its vast, volcanic landscapes, dramatic seascapes of sheer cliffs, and spectacular waterfalls, it is unparalleled in its hiking trails. Hikers come from all over the world to discover a thrilling and exciting wilderness, so after a tiring day of hiking why not look for a relaxing place to rest and recuperate? Head to the sanctuary that is the Ress Spa at the stylish Hotel Føroyar for a Rotfesti; the ideal treatment for tired feet and aching legs, it features a 30 min gentle massage with organic oil and hot stones, to ease the muscles and help put the spring back in your step, ready for more hiking action. (DKK 650 / £76 pp). For extra pampering have an invigorating 30 min session in the infrared sauna. (DKK 150 / £18 pp). Stay at Hotel Føroyar with rooms starting from DKK 1,100 pp / approx. £120 pp per night (two sharing). Return flights from Edinburgh cost from £200 pp with Atlantic Airways. See AITO* member Visit Faroe Islands www.visitfaroeislands.com.
Nourish mind and body in a tropical ‘Blue Zone’ – Japan from £422 pppn with Hoshino Resorts
Located on Japan’s tropical Okinawa Island – one of the world’s few ‘Blue Zones’ known for their long life expectancy and healthy lifestyles – HOSHINOYA Okinawa is a luxurious coastal retreat in the coastal village of Yomitan, with 100 guest villas and suites designed around a central indoor patio and offering breathtaking ocean views. Experience the ultimate in Okinawan healthy living, with the hotel’s motto of “training and nurturing” allowing both the body and mind to be released through the repetition of tension and relaxation. Firstly, take part in Ryukyu karate practice (Okinawa is where the martial art originates from) in the hotel’s ‘dojo’ (studio). Then, release the body through a series of treatments using the power of Okinawan nature in the resort’s red-tiled spa, such as shiatsu massage combining strokes reminiscent of gentle waves and breathing, as well as acupuncture and moxibustion. Continue to unwind in the hotel’s sea-view infinity pool, separate shallow pool designed for napping and reading, and restaurant serving divine healthy Okinawan dishes utilizing bounty from the island’s land and sea. Stay overnight from 136,000 JPY per night / approx. £843 (68,000 JPY / £422 pp) for a double, room only (rates may vary according to season). Visit hoshinoya.com/okinawa/en/.
*AITO is The Specialist Travel Association: more than 120 specialist independent holiday companies and 80 specialist independent travel agents, together providing an unrivalled collection of holiday ideas covering every corner of the world. Consumers booking with AITO members can be assured of high-quality holidays, excellent personal service and full financial protection. Visit www.aito.com for further information.
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When I first started out travel writing, twenty years ago, I was writing a weekly round-up for The Independent. The first PR agency I ever tapped into for their clients' holiday ideas was Travel PR; they were always full of great suggestions for the column and responded quickly. Over the years, I've worked with them on many occasions and their close association with AITO has always paid dividends. Nothing has changed; some of the best story ideas I get herald from them, and their response time remains very speedy. They are a pleasure to work with.Mark Stratton, Freelance Travel Writer
Travel PR, established 25 years ago, is a leading specialist PR and communications agency specialising in the travel, hotel and lifestyle markets. Want to create a PR strategy for your brand?