This 450-year-old magnificent Neo-Elizabethan manor set in acres of verdant parkland is now a Champneys Spa Hotel. While the old-world charm of Eastwell remains, the Old Pavilion has been transformed into a modern spa, with a 20-metre indoor pool, sauna, steam room, hydrotherapy pool and 20 treatment rooms. Enjoy delicious locally sourced healthy meals in the new restaurant, then curl up in the relaxation room with views of the North Downs. Feeling active? Champneys also offer a range of daily classes, from Aqua Fit to Zumba - or try tennis, croquet and falconry in the expansive gardens.
- XXL robes available
- 20m heated indoor swimming pool
- Outdoor pool and hot tub
- Steam room
- Hydrotherapy pool
- Experience shower
- Relaxation room
- Dry floatation room
- Beauty Suite
- Up to ten classes a day
- Tennis court
- Golf course
Our Spa Spy review
The newest addition to the Champneys family of spa properties, Eastwell Manor looks like a medieval manor house tucked away in the Kent countryside. Entrance gates lead to the front of the house with its tall twisty chimneys, leaded light windows and huge wooden doors. You half expect a knight in shining armour to stride across the courtyard to the mounting block. In fact, Eastwell Manor was built in the 1920s as a faithful representation of a much older manor house. It has been very well done. The wide staircase has carved gargoyle figures on the newel posts, there are huge stone fireplaces, and stone arches between the main rooms.
The spa is in a more modern building just a few minutes’ walk away. Day guests can park at the spa and walk along the path to the spa entrance. The light and airy spa reception has the spa café visible through glass doors. Staff will check you in at one of the two desks, give you a bag with robes and slippers, and wireless locker keys. They will then take you on a spa tour, ending in the changing rooms, and show you how to use the lockers.
What's on offer?
The spa is on two levels. On the ground floor are the changing rooms, gym, pool area, and spa cafe and lounge. Upstairs is the treatment reception area, a nail bar, and a quiet relaxation room.
The changing rooms have several large showers with shampoo, conditioner and shower gel. Several private changing rooms have seats in them: useful, as there is not quite enough seating in the main changing area.
The pool area has a 20-metre swimming pool, a large hydrotherapy pool with three swan pipes and seated bubbly areas, and a separate, hotter Jacuzzi. There is a good hot sauna, two showers and a small, but superhot steam room beside the hydrotherapy pool. Along each side of the main pool are cushioned beds with curtains around, divided into spaces for two or three people. These are open to the pool but give a sense of privacy. This whole area is light and bright with windows at both ends of the room. The white seats have bright blue cushions. The main pool and hydrotherapy pool are divided by a curved glass screen; a water curtain runs down on the hydrotherapy side, effectively dividing the room in two.
The relaxation room is decorated in soft greys, with beds to lounge on and throws to snuggle under. Lighting in here is reduced and there are jugs of flavoured water to help yourself to. This is where you wait for your therapist to collect you for treatments in one of the 21 treatment rooms.
Tell us about the treatments
I had the Champneys Citrus Blush Body ritual (50 minutes; £79), while my spa partner had the Champneys Head in the Clouds massage (25 minutes; £49).
Amberlea, my therapist, began with an exfoliation of my back with a fine-grained, slightly zingy scrub. She removed the product with nice hot towels, then did a back massage, paying particular attention to my lower back. She worked the muscles across my body which helped relieve the tension caused by long driving journeys. She used hot stones on my shoulders and neck -- my very tense areas -- then moved onto a foot massage. I love having my feet massaged; this massage was particularly good as Amberlea ran the hot stones along the soles of my feet. This was intensely pleasant and relaxing. To let the moisturiser sink in, Amberlea wrapped me up in a plastic sheet, tucked the towels around me, then did a scalp massage. I was almost asleep when she whispered that the treatment was finished.
My spa partner loved his back and head massage which began with the pouring of warm oil along his spine. Mia, his therapist, then rubbed the oil sideways onto the muscles and massaged his back. She focused attention on the lower back and neck, the two key areas of tension. The treatment finished with a pleasant head massage.
Eastwell Manor has a wide range of treatments to choose from. Facials include the top-of-the-range Elemis biotec facial and the Champneys collagen gold facial. Body treatments include hot stone and lava shell massages, scrubs, wraps and treatments for men and mothers-to-be. You can also try manicures, pedicures and beauty finishing treatments.
You can join a range of exercise classes such as Zumba, cycling, aqua mitt, and boot-camp circuits.
The spa lounge area has sofas and coffee tables with magazines and newspapers. You walk through this to the main spa dining area. The room is large and light as it has windows overlooking the grounds on one side. There are large semi-circular blue sofas in the middle, white chairs and tables, plus cushions all around.
We limited ourselves to fruity smoothies, then later in the day had tea and home-made cookies. But you can choose from a range of salads, soups and sandwiches. If you fancy a proper afternoon tea, head over the hotel and settle down by a roaring fire in the lounge.
If you are staying in the hotel, dinner is served in the large baronial hall dominated by the large stone fireplace. A yule log would certainly burn for 12 days in this huge fire. We had delicious guinea fowl cooked with mushrooms and baby leeks, and my spa partner had a (sadly undercooked) fish pie. He made up for the disappointment by indulging in a very traditional steamed pudding and custard!
We loved / we didn't love
The stylish interiors: The colour scheme of white, grey and blue feels bright and up-to-date, and makes the spa light and uplifting.
The good-sized swimming pool and the curtained areas around it: Couples and groups of three could sit by the pool and chat and feel quite private.
The lovely treatments: Simple but effective and very well delivered
The wireless locker keys: No need to remember a code or fiddle with pushing a wrist-band at the right angle. Just touch the band to the button and, hey presto, the locker opens.
We did not love
The lukewarm hydrotherapy pool: You need warmth for the pool to have an effect on your muscles. Although we were told it should be 34 degrees, it was actually not much warmer than the main pool.
The lack of seats in the changing room: There are stools by both sets of mirrors where people sit to put on make-up and do their hair, but another bench or two would help those of us who have reached the stage in life where we need to sit down just to put our trousers on!
Who do you think would like it?
Anyone keen to fit in regular day-spa trips: The range of day-spa options is good; once you're on the mailing list, they send you frequent offers.
Anyone in Kent or south London: Eastwell Manor is very easy to reach along the Kent transport corridor (M20 and M2 and high-speed rail link) .
Treatment junkies: The range of treatments is wide and prices are affordable.
06.30 – 21.00 Spa
08.00 – 18.00 Spa restaurant
Family swimming times are 08.30 – 10.00 and 16.30 – 18.00