Set in three acres of secluded gardens and adjacent to some of the most famous paddocks and training stables in the world is Bedford Lodge Hotel and Spa in Newmarket, a country house hotel that blends old and new together effortlessly.
Housed in a separate building from the hotel, the spa is recognised as one of the best in the east of England, and we can see why. The oasis of serenity and relaxation hits you as soon as you arrive, surrounded by its own peaceful gardens the walkway to the spa is reminiscent of an Italian vineyard with pillars either side and vines growing above your head.
Once inside it’s time to truly relax and recharge your batteries, beginning with a welcome drink and homemade lavender and ginger macaron (the best I’ve tasted) served in the spacious lounge area, decorated in soothing grey tones with large armchairs and gold hues, the ambience of calm seems to cocoon you in its arms as you prepare for your spa journey.
The spa itself is set over two levels, the second floor mezzanine area leads to an outdoor roof terrace with a hot tub and loungers inside and out. From the mezzanine you can look over the indoor hydrotherapy pool, which I have to admit is where I spent most of my time, housed within a glass dome that overlooks the gardens – with five different zones, from light bubbles to a pummelling fountain that feels like a massage, the whole experience was one of complete serenity.
I managed to prise myself away from the bubbles long enough to enjoy a blissful ‘Strawberries & Cream’ Rasul with hubbie who had spent most of the morning alternating between the steam room and sauna room.
Hidden away in our own private room, we proceeded to prep our skin with a strawberry scented salt scrub, before stepping into a twinkly lit steam room and applying a vanilla mud mask that slowly melted into the skin, leaving it feeling beautifully exfoliated and silky smooth. This sweet treat had the most delicious scent and the whole experience left us feeling refreshed and revitalised.
After our treatment we went back into the lounge area and enjoyed a light tasty lunch of crab salad for hubbie and haloumi salad for me.
All too soon our refreshingly relaxing spa day had come to an end, but we weren’t too disappointed as we were heading over to the hotel to extend our away time and stay overnight.
The hotel has 77 bedrooms and luxury suites that have been designed by one of London’s leading interior designers offering guests the height of luxury and comfort, but it’s not the rooms that make this hotel stand out it’s the 2AA Rosette Squires restaurant that really does take your stay to the next level.
The name ‘Squires’ is steeped in history in that Bedford Lodge Hotel & Spa was once owned by Squire, George Baird aka ‘The Squire’, a notorious gentlemen rider and trainer. On acquiring the hotel, George built a boxing saloon on one side and his enthusiasms included field sports and an affair with Lillie Langtry… former mistress of the Prince of Wales!
The restaurant itself is atmospheric, with dim lighting, soft music, red walls and large comfy chairs, would the food live up to the restaurants reputation?
We began with a glass of prosecco whilst we pondered the menu, full of delicious looking dishes made using the finest seasonal ingredients and wherever possible sourced locally.
We started off with sea bream fillet with beetroot, smoked bacon aioli, apple & mustard remoulade with black truffle shavings, beautifully presented with an array of flavours that were a real treat to the palette. Hubbie chose the truffle ravioli, served with buffalo mozzarella and sautéed wild mushrooms, another big hit, fresh and mouth-wateringly delicious.
For the main event we both decided on the duo of lamb that consisted of spring lamb rump, 24-hour salt baked shoulder, creamed potato, garlic, chives and sautéed spinach, the meat was succulent and literally fell away, the combination of taste and texture was divine, and the vibrant mix of colours were reflected in the rich taste.
To finish, I opted for mint ice cream, but this wasn’t just any mint ice cream it was like eating fresh mint leaves picked straight from the garden, utterly divine and perfect for cleansing the palette. Hubbie chose sticky toffee pudding with Tonka ice cream which was a heavenly indulgence and certainly meant a little longer would have to be spent at the gym (the hotel has its own private gym) the next day.
With the delicious food, impeccable service and attention to detail it’s easy to see why eating at Squires restaurant is a memorable experience. The feeling of perfectly sculpted overindulgence certainly extends to the restaurant and the delightful food it serves.
Retiring after dinner for a restful night’s sleep, it’s clear that Bedford Lodge Hotel & Spa is the perfect bolt hole to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
Somewhere to cosset yourself whenever the outside world becomes just that little too much.
Overnight Spa Breaks start from £394 for 2 people and Spa days start from £99 per person. To book call 01638 679130 or visit www.bedfordlodgehotel.co.uk