Once the ‘end of line’ luxury holiday destination for the Belfast and County Down Railway, Slieve Donard first opened in 1898 and was considered one of the most forward thinking destinations of its time, being almost completely self sufficient, with its own bakery, vegetable gardens, pigs, laundry, and power plant. Overlooking a windswept Irish Beach, the Spa is an exquisite haven of escapism while the majestic Mountains of Mourne and the rolling sand dunes of County Down provide the perfect backdrop.
In a storybook location, with a history dating back to the 1400s and the founding fathers of Donegal, Lough Eske Castle is a five star hotel on a secluded lakeside estate just outside Donegal Town. The castle itself was opulently renovated in 2007, however it retains its sense of Tudor-baronial grandeur, adding a unique twist to a world-class hotel.
Displaying Mediterranean style architecture and interiors, Aphrodite Hills is a five star hotel including luxury villas. The Retreat Spa is located on an elevated part of the resort above the Mediterranean. Greco-Roman bathing rituals inspired the design, atmosphere and ambience of the Retreat Spa, where there is a total of 27 tranquil treatment rooms.
On the coast of Portugal, in a palazzo-style estate, Penha Longa Resort is situated in the middle of a UNESCO World Heritage Natural Park with views of the hills, gardens and lakes of the southern Sintra Mountains. Meanwhile, the Penha Longa Spa – a holistic retreat which in addition to nine treatment rooms, a gym, pool, sauna, a Turkish bath, and two relaxation areas; makes use of its own garden space with a Jacuzzi, contrast pool with a three-metre waterfall, a platform over the pool for yoga and Qigong.
First built as a renaissance palace for the Grand Duke Ferdinando I de’ Medici, Fonteverde has a reputation for being one of the best hotels in Italy. Surveying the Tuscan landscape, the resort overlooks the majestic rolling hills of Val d’Orcia, and does everything to five star standards.
On top of the dramatic red Algarvian cliffs that overlook the Atlantic Ocean, Pine Cliffs is a luxury resort surrounded by soft sand beaches, elegant pine forests and abundant indigenous flora. Overlooking the beautiful Falésia Beach, the Serenity Spa is inspired by the Algarve’s abundant natural resources, and has a wealth of treatments and facilities available.
Rudding Park is a privately owned luxury hotel and spa in Harrogate. A Grade One listed Regency property, it fuses contemporary design with traditional elegance and a warm, rich colour palette alongside spectacular views. Surrounded by 300 acres of parkland, Rudding Park’s spa has had a spectacular makeover and as a result is now one of the most comprehensive and beautiful spas in the UK, recapturing Harrogate’s spa heritage using natural spring water from the grounds.
A country house hotel in Durham, set in 350 acres of private grounds including an 18-hole golf course, Ramside Hall Hotel features contemporary design but retains a sense of grandeur in its style, including calming colours and superb finishes, all looking out onto the beautiful gardens beyond. Facilities include a 25-metre pool, a gym, a thermal experience with a herbal sauna, Himalayan salt steam, aroma steam, tepidarium, sunken amphitheatre, sauna and drench showers.
Recognised as one of the finest country house hotels in Warwickshire, Mallory Court is all about relaxation and luxury combined. Nothing is too much trouble for the team, while the setting is simply blissful, characterised by sumptuous interiors with a modern twist. The Elan Spa at Mallory Court is a brand new addition to the traditional hotel. In the grounds it has its own entrance and is situated in a sheltered wooded area, screened from the hotel by trees.
The lavish decor and history alone provides a romantic atmosphere at Boringdon Hall, while the spa is a contemporary haven that’s perfect for groups of friends. Elizabethan architecture dominates, complete with secret archways, stone towers, and character that hints at the rich history of the building – including some Royal connections dating back to 956. Gaia Spa at Boringdon Hall is designed to realign and rebalance guests as they seek refuge in the modern spa and its wide range of facilities.