With lockdown in full swing, for many of us wanderlust is hitting and an all-time high and although we don’t know when we will be able to head off on our next adventure, it seems likely that the first trips we will be safely allowed to do will be right here in the UK. Whenever it happens, that first trip post lockdown is going to be extra special. From spa breaks to city explorations, country boltholes, gourmet getaways or even just relishing the freedom to enjoy a picnic with loved ones in the park, here are just a few staycation ideas to inspire…
The Private Residences at YTL Hotels’ Monkey Island Estate, Bray
YTL Hotels’ Monkey Island Estate in Bray-on-Thames, is delighted to announce the opening of six private residences for 2020, offering guests a choice of charming period accommodation. Just 40 minutes from London and offering a private countryside escape, the residences are the ideal first stop staycation to reunite with family and friends post lockdown. Endearingly named to reflect their individual nature, each of the residences blend classic style and contemporary comfort, offering families and groups their own private country home steeped in stylish yet laidback luxury. The island, with its intriguing history dating back 800 years, has been the haunt of monks, monarchs, aristocrats and writers alike and each of the residences also has a fascinating history, playing host to composer Edward Elgar, Formula One legend Stirling Moss and Thunderbirds creator Sylvia Anderson to name just a few. Guests staying at the residences can enjoy 20% off treatments at the Floating Spa and 10% off food and drink at the island’s Monkey Brasserie and Bar. Nightly rates at Monkey Island Estate start from £275, per room, per night in a Temple Room. www.monkeyislandestate.co.uk
A Gourmet & Wellness Getaway with The Gainsborough Bath Spa
Those looking for true rest and relaxation post lockdown need look no further than YTL Hotels’ The Gainsborough Bath Spa- the only hotel in the UK to offer its visitors the opportunity to access and experience Bath’s famed natural thermal waters. The hotel’s private water reserve bubbles to the surface at 47 degrees centigrade, packed full of rich natural minerals. Combined with award-winning design and world-class gourmet experiences at Dan Moon at The Gainsborough, the 99-bedroom hotel gives guests a majestic spa and gourmet journey in the heart of Bath that keeps them coming back again and again. Head Chef Dan Moon is delighted to introduce new summer menus boasting special signature dishes and plant-based options ready for guests to enjoy after lockdown- the ideal antidote to all that home cooking! Nightly rates at The Gainsborough Bath Spa start from £290 on a room-only basis. www.thegainsboroughbathspa.co.uk
The Academy, Bloomsbury- For those who have developed a love for literature during lockdown
For many, lockdown has been a chance to catch up on reading and fully immerse ourselves in the world of books. Those who have a newfound love for literature, or for those who have seen their passion for reading grow even more need not let this go once lockdown lifts. YTL Hotels’ elegant Gower Street property, The Academy, is thrilled to offer guests a series of literary experiences to enjoy in celebration of the hotel’s location, in London’s literary, cultural and intellectual heart. From literary walks to intimate book club gatherings and a bespoke literary collection cocktail menu, The Academy is a literary hub with its very own story to tell. Book-loving guests looking to follow in the footsteps of Bloomsbury greats who once lived and worked in the neighbourhood need look no further for the ultimate bookish escape. Rooms at The Academy start from £300. www.theacademyhotel.co.uk
A Scottish Citybreak with The Glasshouse, Edinburgh
Set in the heart of Edinburgh, with the shopping haven of Princes Street, historic Edinburgh Castle and the Scottish National Portrait Gallery all just steps away, YTL Hotels’ The Glasshouse is the ideal destination for a post-lockdown break. The 77-room luxury boutique hotel greets guests with the impressive original church façade, before they are transported into the contrastingly contemporary design on the inside. Heading up to the newly renovated ‘Snug’ area, guests can peruse the impressive whisky cabinet, stocking whiskies from all over Scotland. The Glasshouse proudly boasts more outdoor space than any hotel in Edinburgh, thanks to its variety of balcony rooms, and the Rooftop Garden – a two-acre terrace accessible to all guests, boasting a breath-taking panoramic view of the city from above, and of the famous Calton Hill from below. Nightly rates at The Glasshouse start from £200 per night. www.theglasshousehotel.co.uk
Sunny Reunions with Conrad London St. James’ Picnics in the Park
While staying home and staying safe many of us are starting to dream of brighter days ahead when we will finally be able to meet friends and family in the park as the sun shines over London. After being stuck indoors for so long, there will be no better way to enjoy good company and the fresh outdoors than Conrad London St. James’ luxury picnic hamper. Prepared by Executive Chef Michael Riordan, guests can pick up their portable feast packed with homemade treats before finding the perfect picnic spot in St. James’s Park, just a two-minute walk from the hotel. Conrad London St. James’s ready-made picnic hamper offers a contemporary British menu, using fresh, tasty, regional ingredients, so when soggy sandwiches don’t quite cut the mustard you know where to go! Prices for the picnic hamper start from £26 per person. Nightly rates at Conrad London St. James start from £317 on a room only basis. For reservations and more information please visit www.conradhotels.com/london or call 020 3301 8080.
A Weekend by the Sea in Margate with THIRDHOME Rentals
Stay at the two-bedroom Margate Majesty and spend the weekend blowing away the lockdown cobwebs with refreshing sea breezes, coastal walks and fish & chips on the front. The picturesque property is well located to explore the town’s shops, cafes and local attractions, as well as the famous Viking Coastal Trail – a 25-mile trek which passes through Margate, Broadstairs, Ramsgate to Pegwell Bay – perfect for those wanting to stretch their legs! Available through THIRDHOME Rentals. Nightly rates from £180. For more information, please visit www.thirdhome.com.
Escape to Nature with Slieve Donard Resort & Spa, Northern Ireland
The Slieve Donard Resort & Spa is situated on the idyllic seashores of the Irish sea on Newcastle Bay. The hotel looks out to the Mountains of Mourne with spectacular views across the Royal County Down Golf Course. Set in six acres of beautifully kept private grounds, the property is famous for its expansive and luxurious spa. Guests can escape to a cocoon of calm and melt away their stresses with over two floors of tranquillity, including a magnificent 20 metre swimming pool and Vitality Pool, amethyst steam room and high tech fitness studio. The Slieve Donard Resort & Spa (hastingshotels.com ; 028 4372 1066) offers rooms from £65 per person on a B&B Basis.
Ruby Lucy, London
Ruby Hotels, the Munich-based hotel brand and pioneer of the ‘Lean Luxury’ philosophy, has launched its first UK property in London’s Southbank. The new 76-room hotel, Ruby Lucy, forms part of an ambitious expansion plan for Ruby Hotels to unveil a total of eleven new hotels – including a second London property – by 2022. Enjoying a prime position on the Southbank’s Lower Marsh, Ruby Lucy’s interior design is inspired by the area’s bustling fairs and markets, entertainment and theatre scene, with a carnival theme running throughout the hotel. Rich, dark tones meet bright brass accents and subtle stripes, accented with playful props including circus drums and juggling pins. Nightly rates at Ruby Lucy start from £119 per night. For more information please visit www.ruby-hotels.com.
Dedicated Benefits for a British Break with Little Emperors
Little Emperors, the private members luxury hotel club has announced its best British breaks, all of which offer incredible dedicated benefits. Experience undeniably enticing luxury rooms at Clivedon House in Berkshire which is nestled within almost 400acres of National Trust parkland. Explore the tranquil water garden, fitness trail through the grounds or find your way out of the Clivedon Maze. Reconnect at the family friendly Four Seasons Hampshire, a restored 18th Century Manor House with rolling hills to ride along on horse-back and beautiful lush gardens to explore on foot. For cider drinkers, head to The Newt in Somerset where you can stay in a beautiful Georgian Country Estate and learn about the advanced cold-press processes used to make their cider. Little Emperors promises to deliver value in luxury like never seen before offering unparalleled benefits and a lowest price guarantee. The company works with 35,000 members and over 4,000 of the very best luxury hotels around the world. With an impressive portfolio of properties from 5-star luxury hotels to design city boutiques, Little Emperors really is best-kept secret in travel – so good, you don’t want to miss it! Little Emperors most popular British hotels include: Clivedon House, Four Seasons Hampshire, The Newt, The Langley, Thyme, Heckfield Place, Beaverbrook. Little Emperors annual membership fees starts from £250. Tel + 44 203 178 4984 or email email@example.com
Year-round Safe Sunbathing at Oliver’s Travels’ Beach Retreat in Kent
Oliver’s Travels’ Beach Retreat boasts an enviable position right on the Kent coast. The house has been newly refurbished to an exceptional standard with king size beds, Jacuzzi bath, marble fireplaces, cinema room, real sunlight room, St Tropez style living area with beach bar, spacious garden and direct access to the sandy beach. The retreat is one of the first in the country to have installed innovative health-giving sun simulators safely imitating real sunlight. The sun room is beneficial against a whole host of health conditions including Seasonal Affective Disorder, stress, arthritis and more. The property is located in the village Dymchurch nearby Hythe and Folkestone, and sleeps 13 guests in 7 bedrooms. Rates from £2,711 for a two-night stay or from £3,112 for a seven-night stay. To book, visit www.oliverstravels.com or call 0800 133 7999.
Stay in a Renovated Factory in the Heart of the New Forest with Oliver’s Travels
Nestled within the New Forest National Park, The Brick House is a beautifully renovated factory situated on the edge of the privately owned Beaulieu River. Beautiful brickwork and modern amenities bring together a perfect mix of old and new while the welcome addition of a yurt in the warmer months allows space to invite a few more guests or use as a magical outdoor hideaway for younger guests. The New Forest is brimming with fun family activities including kayaking, canoeing and archery. Guests can brave some wild-swimming in the nearby pontoon or take the boat taxi from the house downstream to a local pub for a spot of dinner. The Brick House comfortably sleeps up to eight guests across five well-appointed bedrooms. Rates from £1,350 for a three-night stay or from £2,448 for a seven-night stay. To book, visit www.oliverstravels.com or call 0800 133 7999.
For The Big Reunion! The Copse, Oxfordshire – THIRDHOME Rentals
This seven-bedroom country house near Henley-on-Thames is ideal for a friends and family get-together. The property offers a cinema room and hot tub, whilst it’s location in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty makes it a great option for those wanting to enjoy some outdoor pursuits. Available through THIRDHOME Rentals. Nightly rates from £1,350. For more information, please visit www.thirdhome.com.
A Pampering Spa Break at Rudding Park, Harrogate, North Yorkshire
Set within 300 acres of landscaped gardens and woodland amongst the rolling Yorkshire countryside, Rudding Park features the UK’s first rooftop spa garden. Designed to encapsulate the natural beauty of Rudding Park’s surroundings, guests will find a hydrotherapy infinity pool, a panoramic sauna infused with seasonal scents of flora and fauna, a herbal bath steam room emitting aromas of lavender and euka-menthol, an ice fountain, a relaxing foot spa, warming Evo lounge beds and an experience shower. To add to their already extensive spa offering, Rudding Park recently launched a Sunlight Therapy Room to help spa guests overcome sunlight deprivation in winter, an Oxygen Pod based on NASA technology to strengthen the immune system and prevent signs of ageing, and a range of treatments using Cannabidiol products. A one-night spa break at Rudding Park starts from £185.50 per person on a half board basis including one 50 minute treatment from the Spa Day Treatment Menu and full day access to the spa. To book, visit www.ruddingpark.co.uk or call 01423 844822.
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