Water is at the heart of a traditional spa and many of the UK’s finest spas uphold that tradition. Swimming pools come in different shapes and sizes usually big enough to swim lengths in, and can be chlorine, ozone or even sea salt treated. Hydrotherapy pools use bubbles, swan pipes or jets to work your muscles and relax your body, and hot tubs are a smaller, more luxurious type of hydrotherapy pool which can be enjoyed for therapeutic or recreational bathing, often with a glass of Champagne! Then there are the plunge pools, experience showers, hot springs...
Whether you want to enjoy a workout in a lap pool, relax in a bubbly hydrotherapy bath or relish the refreshing coolness of an ice fountain after the heat of the sauna, here are our top five spas with water facilities in the UK.
Where? Bath, Wiltshire Why? Because the three pools are filled with the UK’s only natural thermal waters; the warm, mineral-rich water rises up from beneath the ground and dates back to Roman and Celtic times. From the open-air rooftop pool to the indoor Minerva pool to the Cross Bath, there are therapeutic waters abound. Our favourite is the rooftop pool where you can float warmly in all-weathers while looking over the magical skyline of Bath city. Perfect for: Affordable and natural thermal spa time – and the spa purists among you.
Where? Bagshot, Surrey Why? Because there are no less than eight indoor and outdoor pools (one of which is ozone treated and plays underwater music), alongside a thermal heaven of eleven experience rooms of varying temperatures, humidity and aromas, with dedicated areas for men and women. Pennyhill is only 45 minutes from London and has a two Michelin starred restaurant on site for the food lovers among us! Perfect for: A leisurely, luxurious and lovely spa treat.
Where? St Andrews, Scotland Why? Because the spa’s main focus is on the therapeutic benefits of water, with signature treatments recreating the healing properties of earth’s natural mineral waters. There’s a decent sized swimming pool with fabulous waterfall, hydrotherapy pool with jet spray, a plunge pool and plenty of hydrotherapy treatments involving scented showers and colourful baths! Perfect for: Water healing, and golf lovers.
Where? Malvern, Worcestershire Why? Built on site of natural spring, with history of a hundred years of spa culture. There’s a blissfully warm indoor/outdoor hydrotherapy pool making use of the natural waters and a signature treatment is inspired by the seven step ‘water cure’ of 1842. Perfect for: Those who love a bit of spa history. Retail therapy – The Malvern is right next to a shopping complex.
Where? Chandlers Cross, Hertfordshire Why? Sequoia Spa has three pools – one 22-metre, ozone-treated swimming pool beneath a wooden beamed ceiling, a second indoor vitality pool which fills an entire room and has multi jets and two swan pipes, and a 25 metre outdoor pool within a walled garden. Perfect for: Peaceful swimming and luxurious spa-ing.