I’m very slowly (emptying my bank account) and working my way through the list of luxury spas in the UK. This trip we were lucky enough to have an overnight stay at South Lodge in West Sussex.
We arrived at our check-in time of 3pm and headed straight to the spa. Due to covid restrictions we were unable to book any spa treatments (they had been booked up waaaay in advance) which was quite disappointing – but we still made the most of it.
As we only had a few hours there, we popped outside and enjoyed the outdoor jacuzzi and hydrotherapy pool in the drizzling rain for a while before I took my Kindle indoors and relaxed on the thermae tiled bench seats. This area was a bit disappointing as it was more of a walkthrough area; with changing rooms leading to it and various steam and sauna rooms leading off of it.
After a couple of hours relaxing we decided to head up to the restaurant for a drink and a light bite before dinner that evening.
Heading back to the room, Stuart went to the bar for a drink whilst I went to trial the rainforest shower and jacuzzi bath whilst watching TV and testing the in-bathroom speaker system in the bathroom. The twin sinks were a lovely touch. Absolute bliss!
The rooms were very traditional in decor. A gorgeous kingsize bed which was super comfy, what is it about hotel bedding? Like sleeping on clouds! A coffee machine, kettle and an array of tea and coffee was provided as was still and sparkling water and a selection of biscuits.
We got dressed up and headed down to our dinner reservation at the Botanica restaurant. At first I was quite disappointed as it was the same restaurant that we’d visited earlier that day. The Botanica is a casual, yet classy, restaurant which overlooks the spa terrace with views of the South Downs. The menu is fairly ‘healthy’ and quite veggie-fied, but of course we made the most of sampling three courses.
I went for a spiced cauliflower to start and we shared a rib of beef – which was ridiculously big! – with chips and rocket. This was all washed down with a few G&T’s, obviously.
After a really comfy nights sleep, we headed to a charming traditional room for a delicious breakfast before heading back to the spa. The restaurant had lots of choice; I plumped for the full English whilst Stu went for Eggs Benedict. Both looked lovely and were met with rave reviews from us both.
The South Lodge Spa, which is located in a separate building from the main hotel, is 44,000 sq foot and has an indoor infinity pool, an outdoor wild pool, the thermal suite, salt and steam rooms, plus the ice bucket shower – and a well equipped gym, if you’re that way inclined. I must also give a shout out to the well equipped changing rooms which were absolutely stunning!
I visited all of the sauna and steam rooms, spending as long as I could manage in each, before settling down by the indoor pool to read and relax. It is a gorgeous backdrop overlooking the stunning views, and I could see why I couldn’t get a seat the day before.
The South Lodge Hotel and Spa is part of the Exclusive Collection range of hotels, which includes Pennyhill Park – and out of the two, Pennyhill Park spa and hotel win hands down for me!
Where can I visit next? Where do you recommend…