The most indulgent spa hotels near London

Courtesy of Cliveden/©Adam Lynk

The capital is full of amazing spas, but if urban decor isn’t enough, here are our favorite spa hotels near London.

For those days when the city gets a little too busy, you’ll want to get away from it all – and luckily you don’t have to travel far to find a soothing spa hotel outside of London.

Bringing you some of the best luxury spa hotels in the UK, hotels like Surrey, Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire and Sussex offer idyllic settings for you to get some well-deserved rest.

Swap the concrete and traffic for bucolic grounds, outdoor pools in pretty gardens, and treatments with herbs and plants picked straight from vegetable gardens.

Whether you want to drive to Berkshire for a Sarah Chapman facial and outdoor swim at Cliveden House (just half an hour by train to Slough, followed by a short cab ride), or call in Coworth Park near Ascot for a hi-tech treatment in a space-age spa suite, relaxation is at your fingertips.

Additionally, many are close to official Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, including Hartwell House, near the Chilterns, and Alexander House and Ockenden Manor, both just south of the Surrey Hills.

If you need some pampering, book into one of these spa hotels near London for the ultimate spa getaway…

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1

Cliveden House, Berkshire

Just over an hour’s drive from the capital (just north of Windsor), Cliveden House is the proud owner of a Sarah Chapman clinic, one of the few in the country. This means you’ll be able to book facials endorsed by the skincare expert’s celebrity clients, including Victoria Beckham, Naomi Watts and Jourdan Dunn.

There’s a heated outdoor pool that may have an outrageous history (for its part in the Profumo affair), but it’s also just a lovely place to swim — plus, it’s heated to weatherproof British temperatures.

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2

Four Seasons Hampshire Hotel, Hampshire

It should come as no surprise that the Four Seasons outpost in Hampshire has a great spa, as many of the brand’s luxury hotels prioritize pampering – in this area near Basingstoke and Hook, the spa has taken over the stables and treatments change with the four seasons.

The rural retreat has its own 500 acres, spanning a shooting range, lake and lawn, plus a zip line and, of course, the Georgian mansion in the middle. Other spa facilities include a resident hypnotherapist, a long indoor pool, and a studio that leads out to the gardens.

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3

Coworth Park, Berkshire

This Berkshire estate might be a hit with equestrians (its 240 acres include polo fields and stables), but it’s also a great pick for spa-goers. It’s doable on a day trip from the capital, as the journey should take just over an hour, but there are plenty of things to do, namely: walks in the flower meadows wild, drinks by the fire and dinner overlooking the terraced gardens on the heated patio of the Drawing Room.

At the spa, you can enjoy treatments from top brands such as Valmont, Ishga and Germaine de Capuccini, made in Scotland (and enriched with seaweed).

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4

Sopwell House, Hetfordshire

So close to London that it is almost within the M25, Sopwell House in the town of St Albans, Hertfordshire, is a Georgian country mansion with 12 acres of land. The quaintly named Cottonmill Spa is as quaint as you’d hope, with an expansive indoor pool, fire pits for warming up outside, and gardens for relaxing after your treatment. Unique rituals on offer include Sound & Sand: you’ll lie on a reclining quartz bed and listen to singing bowls before a back, leg and foot massage.

At the end of your day at the spa, you can stay in one of the Mews suites, after having a drink at the veranda bar and dining at the brasserie.

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5

Hartwell House, Buckinghamshire

Also close to the capital is Hartwell House, a listed mansion 40 miles away, although the Aylesbury Valley setting makes it feel even further afield. The Jacobean and Georgian house sits on the edge of AONB Chilterns and has 90 acres of gardens and parkland of its own.

At the spa, there’s a pool, sauna, steam room, and hot tub, and guests can also use the outdoor tennis courts and gym. Treatments include Aromatherapy Associates facials, all of which include a scalp massage. The spa has a cafe with a terrace when it’s warm enough.

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An hour’s drive southwest of London, Foxhills has an easily accessible location in the Surrey town of Chertsey, as well as a championship golf course, tennis courts and three restaurants among which ones to choose.

At the spa, you can enjoy classes in the yoga cabin, swim in one of the five pools (including a chemical-free natural pool in the spa garden) and do spells in the hot tub or Finnish saunas . The list of treatments includes DIY hammams, Elemis facials, salt scrubs, acupuncture, and full-body shea, honey, and rasul clay masks.

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7

Alexander House, East Sussex

A grand Jacobean mansion in the West Sussex countryside, Alexander House sits just south of the Surrey Hills and around 90 minutes’ drive from London. In addition to turrets and towers, the red-brick retreat boasts 120 acres of grounds, a colonnaded pool and outbuildings with easy access to woodland walks, ideal for dog owners. There’s a pet-friendly lounge for warming up by the fire afterwards, as well as afternoon tea for the dogs (yes, with tiered bowls).

At the aptly named Utopia Spa, there’s a barrel sauna and outdoor hot tub, a nail bar, and relaxation rooms for post-treatment naps. Signature rituals include an 85-minute massage and anti-aging Oskia facial, as well as a face, scalp and shoulder treatment, also using the excellent Oskia products.

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8

Ockenden Manor, West Sussex

Ockenden Manor is another spa hotel near London, close to the AONB Surrey Hills – and the area around the hotel is put to good use in its regular Full Moon & Fabulous retreats, where guests can learn the art of bathing of forest. Two-night stays also include yoga, meditation, and an hour in the I-Sopod flotation tank, in case you aren’t feeling relaxed enough.

The spa, set in a 19th-century walled garden, has an indoor-outdoor pool, eight treatment rooms, and a rain shower fed by the hotel’s spring. The trip south should take an hour and 45 minutes.

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9

Lucknam Park, Wiltshire

The farthest from London on our list, but well worth the two-hour drive, Lucknam Park has 500 acres of private parkland, plus a superb spa. The Wiltshire estate is a 25-minute drive from Bath (where there are, of course, more famous spas). A grand Palladian mansion sits at the bottom of the long tree-lined avenue and there is a spa in the walled garden.

Guests can book Espa and Carita Paris treatments, sign up for yoga classes, and enjoy the indoor-outdoor pool — and it’s definitely worth dining at the Michelin-starred Hywel Jones restaurant.

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ten

Luton Hoo, Bedfordshire

Just an hour’s drive from the M1, Luton Hoo is the quintessential English country club in bucolic Bedfordshire, with a spa in its former stables. The oak-framed building includes a heat therapy suite, gym and infinity pool. Outside you will find tennis courts, jogging paths and terraces to relax.

Guests can book a firming Espa facial, salt and oil scrubs, hot stone massage or sea mud body wrap – complete with an elegant afternoon tea in one of the sumptuous lounges waiting impatiently afterwards.

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Richard F. Gandhi