We arrived on New Year’s Day, if you are looking for a relaxing spa / hotel experience this is not the day to arrive on, the hotel was more like a Disney resort than a five star spa.
The facilities themselves are great although the restaurants and bars are somewhat over priced, £4.55 for a small Late or cappuccino does make you feel like you are being ripped off and not offering the same at breakfast unless you pay another £4.55 each is penny pinching, I’ve never stayed in a hotel of this star rating before and been charged for cappuccino when you’ve already paid for breakfast, also charging residents £18 per night for car parking when you are stuck out in the middle of nowhere and have to drive there is not on and was not mentioned at the initial booking phase, that more than anything made us feel like we were just being milked for every penny (management take note).
The pool area is really nice, the changing rooms are modern and the sauna and steam rooms very clean, unfortunately the whole area is not very well policed, there really should be more adults only time allocated to this facility, this is not beating down on people with families or kids themselves but in our case we came away for a relaxing three day break and the pool on the first day was something akin to being at your local family pool on a bank holiday.
With regards to it not being policed properly I have respect for everyone’s beliefs and religions but I do not want to be in a pool where people are fully clothed head to toe, I’ll leave that one there before I insight political arguments.
The ice skating ring was a great feature but impossible to get on, it was so busy with so many families in attendance we decided to give it a miss especially when the staff couldn’t tell us what time they had vacancies for and how much it would cost, apparently the cost rises and falls depending on how busy they are ???, we didn’t understand that either.
Our second day there was so much better than the first, the hotel was a lot quieter and so it took on the feel of a relaxing spa break.
We had one treatment each (a full massage) in the Spa and I have to say it was top notch, the staff were knowledgable and friendly and the massage itself was superb, highly recommended.
Our room was also first class, clean and comfortable with a very comfortable bed that we struggled to get out of !.
Would I recommend the Celtic Manor for a relaxing spa break or a great place to stay when passing through?, yes I would but just make sure your bank account is well stocked and you don’t book for the premium dates unless you are going there with the whole family and want to keep the kids entertained for which it’s perfect.