Looking to spend the weekend indulging your senses at an indulgent spa? We sent Rianna Fry off the Suffolk to try out the facilities at The Bedford Lodge Hotel & Spa to find out what’s on offer…
Just a stone’s throw from Cambridge, Bedford Lodge Hotel & Spa is situated on an impressive estate in Newmarket, the home of British horse racing. Named after its former owner, the Duke of Bedford, the hotel dates back to the 18th century and boasts a charming – and delicately done – blend of contemporary furnishings in a classic building.
On arrival at the hotel, we were greeted by a welcoming smile from the delightful door man and the lady at reception who handed over our keys and directed us to our room. Inside the cosy king-suite I was suitably impressed with the line-up of amenities – including, to my delight, Tea Pig earl grey and Molton Brown toiletries.
Although on the same grounds, the hotel and spa operate singularly so you can’t robe up in your room before your treatments – unless you’re prepared to brave the cold and some raised eyebrows! So remember to pack a separate, smaller bag if you’re staying the night.
Just a 30 second walk from the hotel, a beautifully-renovated Georgian building is the setting of the spa. The property was transformed in 2013 and tastefully decorated with top-quality furnishings.
Once inside, the key to my locker was handed over and, rather than being fixed to an over-sized safety pin, it was threaded onto a bracelet – a nice touch, I thought. Inside my locker I found my gown and slippers, which I popped on and headed for the sauna.
Being newly-built, the spa felt almost untouched and delightfully clean. In addition to the steam room and sauna, there’s a roof-top hot tub, ice fountain, hammam, and experimental showers. The main feature, though, is the hydrotherapy pool with five different water experiences. The gorgeous high ceilings and giant windows allowed the sun to pour in throughout the day. I really enjoyed relaxing in the pool, watching the day draw in and the stars come out. I can’t forget to mention the relaxation room, which is entirely dedicated to, as the name suggests, relaxation!
Back in the hotel is Squires restaurant which proudly boasts 2 AA rosettes – and I couldn’t wait to tuck into it’s delicious menu. To start I devoured the hamhock and chicken tower, complete with pickled mushrooms, cauliflower puree, caper berries, shallot crisps. Next was a succulent fillet steak, hand-cut chips and rocket salad.
After relaxing in the spa, Squires had just the right atmosphere – it was laid-back with the formal undercurrents you’d expect from a quality restaurant. Plus, the friendly staff were unflustered and easy-going, enabling me to maintain that feel-good, relaxed mindset I’d switched on earlier in the day.