School’s out for the summer, and families across Britain are scrambling to come up with holiday ideas and mini-breaks which will appeal to frazzled adults, curious kids, and hard-to-please teenagers.
For most parents, a ‘family-friendly’ spa break probably sounds like an impossible fantasy. But there are more and more excellent spa resorts across the UK which offer just that. From treehouses in Hampshire, to croquet in Cornwall, we’ve hand-picked the most innovative and luxurious family friendly spas which will appeal to kids (and parents) of all ages.
- Location: Cornwall
This is the mansion which inspired Toad Hall, in the world-famous Wind in the Willows stories. So surely there can be no better place for a book-hungry child to visit and explore during the summer holidays.
The spa is small but fully equipped with everything you need to fully unwind. There are three private treatment rooms where you can indulge in a facial, body scrub, wrap, or massage – and the hotel’s free babysitting service means you can enjoy your spa time without a care in the world.
+ Most child-friendly feature: Croquet on the lawn. It’s the ultimate English lawn sport that the whole family can play together, while channelling their favourite fairytale character.
+ Don’t miss: Stick with the seaside theme by booking a 45-minute session in the Detox Seaweed Leaf Bath – an immersive healing and detoxing experience.
- Location: Wiltshire
Woolley Grange is very much a family-friendly resort first, and a spa second. Children are welcome all across the premises, although they will need adult supervision around spa facilities such as the sauna and pools. From May until September, there is a beautiful outdoor pool situated in the hotel’s walled garden, which is the perfect place to loll about in the sun reading a good book, while the kids splash about.
The spa itself is a colourful and charming space which offers a huge range of Mamma Mio pregnancy treatments and VOYA facials, massages, and wraps. Mothers and daughters can get their nails done together at the Nailtiques salon, or you can indulge in some ‘me’ time while taking advantage of the resort’s free childcare.
+ Most child-friendly feature: The Woolley Bears Den – a perfect retreat for kids eight and under. It features a dressing up box, toys, games and daily activity sessions.
+ Don’t miss: the VOYA Signature Organic Seaweed Leaf Wrap. A luxuriously long detoxifying and moisturising treatments which will magically take a couple of inches off your body.
- Location: Bath
Arguably one of Britain’s top spa resorts, Lucknam Park boasts an award-winning spa, a Michelin starred restaurant (with adjoining cookery school), an equestrian centre, and 500 acres of stunning scenery just waiting to be explored.
The Spa by Lucknam Park is a haven of organic products, and restorative therapies for men, women and mothers-to-be. You can even book a mini treatment with your daughter (or son!) as long as they’re above the age of eight.
+ Most child-friendly feature: The horses. Lucknam Park houses dozens of beautiful horses in world-class equestrian facilities. Kids can take lessons or families can book guided treks around the beautiful hotel grounds.
+ Don’t miss: ILA Ku Nye – a Tibetan-inspired full body massage which features essential oils, cupping, acupressure, hot stones and poultice to leave you feeling relaxed inside and out.
- Location: Hampshire
This award-winning spa and hotel have to be seen to be believed. Families can choose to stay in beautifully-decorated treehouse suite, before climbing back down to earth the next morning for a hike through the nearby New Forest, or a round of golf on the 130-acre grounds of the resort.
There is a Michelin starred restaurant on site, as well as a celebrated wine bar (with more than 1,400 wines on the menu), four tennis courts, falconry, duck herding, and apache buggy racing, to name just a few of the many things that make Chewton Glen fun for any age.
+ Most child-friendly feature: The treehouses! There really is nothing like waking up in a bed perched in the top of a great New Forest tree.
+ Don’t miss: The Tree Top Tranquillity Treatment – because who says only kids are supposed to enjoy treehouses?! A spa therapist will come to your treehouse suite and treat you to a 90-minute body treatment during which warm rose oil is dripped and massaged across your skin, leaving you moisturised and relaxed.
- Location: Exeter
This is a lovely, modern spa hotel in one of England’s oldest cities. Kids are made to feel welcome with little touches such as the life-size game of Snakes and Ladders in the hotel’s walled garden. And for the parents, there is a choice of bars, a highly acclaimed restaurant, an indoor-outdoor pool and, of course, the spa.
The REN Spa uses 100% organic products (by REN, naturally enough) and gentle techniques which are suitable for mothers-to-be and breastfeeding mums. Male treatments are also available, and the beauty salon takes manicure bookings for girls as young as eight.
+ Most child-friendly feature: The in-room iPads, which will keep kids amused while you wind down after a gruelling massage.
+ Don’t miss: The REN Bespoke Facial – REN’s unique bio active technology and Synergy Massage System help to repair and protect your skin in record time. You will notice a difference immediately.