May 4th, 2017 | Rachel Parry
The month of May is one of our very favourites here at Brides Up North HQ, not only as it tends to signal the start of warmer weather, but it’s also when our incredible festival wedding fairs take place across the north of the country. These super cool events are like no other as we create outdoor wedding wonderlands with huge sailcloth tents, tipis and yurts filled with wildly creative wedding suppliers, plus street food vendors, pop-up bars, live bands and so much more. The tour starts this Sunday 7th May with our glorious WEDSTOCK’17 at Stockeld Park, Yorkshire, and from there we will be heading to Ormesby Hall in Middlesbrough on Sunday 14th May, and Capesthorne Hall in Cheshire on Sunday 21st May, to give all you brides-to-be a piece of the fabulous festival action.
Another reason we favour May is for its bank holidays (who doesn’t love a bonus day off?!) and so with such a busy time on the horizon, we were sure to make the first long weekend of the month a relaxing one by heading off for an overnight spa break at the stunning Hoar Cross Hall.
Such getaways not only enable us to signpost you in the direction of the very best retreats for pre/post wedding pampering and luxurious hen do locations, but it also gives us chance to discuss exciting ideas for the blog, and boy do we have amazing plans in the pipeline! But more about that to follow soon, for now let us fill you in on our heavenly stay at this Grade II stately home where total relaxation comes as standard!
Situated in breath-takingly beautiful Staffordshire countryside, the chilled-out vibes start on your approach to the Hall and only deepen once over its threshold. Its impressive entrance and bar lounge area combine period style and modern luxury perfectly and make for a very warm welcome. Arriving early evening and keen to start the pampering from the off, we began with a glass of bubbles in the bar before heading to our room to freshen up before dinner.
Each of Hoar Cross Hall’s 96 bedrooms are individually designed in keeping with the stately surrounds and offer comfort and class, which resulted in a very restful night’s sleep for the two of us in our adjoining rooms.
Dinner was served in the Hall’s grand restaurant with calming views over the perfectly manicured gardens. Having selected a bottle of rose (well, it is getting on for summer!) we scanned over the varied choice of dishes and made our selection. We enjoyed starters of salmon two ways and chicken liver parfait before going onto mains of roast chicken and spinach and ricotta cannelloni. Something light to finish we thought, and so opted for the fruit platter and ice cream. The food at Hoar Cross is presented beautifully and tastes as good as it looks, while staff are attentive in making sure everything is to your liking.
With relaxation top of the agenda, we decided on an early night and early start to make the most of the Hall’s fabulous spa facilities.
Following an ample breakfast of granola followed by poached eggs, we took the elevator down to the lower ground where the hugely spacious spa is concealed, much like a well kept secret. And what a gem it is, with numerous tranquil pools and soothing water therapies to explore and experience.
Fellow spa visitors included groups of ladies as well as couples, making a Hoar Cross Hall getaway a perfect option for an indulgent hen do with the girls, some pre-wedding pampering with family or friends, plus a relaxing minimoon retreat to recharge the batteries ahead of jetting off on the main honeymoon.
There are various day and overnight packages to choose from, with meals included, and the option of treatments for head-to-toe relaxation.
The spa boasts two beautiful pools; a saltwater vitality pool, complete with jet massage pools, two luxury whirlpools and a starlit cave, plus a hydrotherapy pool with gentle currents and body massage jets.
There are also a number of heat, ice and massage experiences to detox and revitalise the body by stimulating different senses. These include sensory showers and aqua massage therapies as well as an aspen wood sauna, aroma room and ice temple.
And as if that’s not enough, there are lots of beautifully snug spaces to relax both poolside and within designated relaxation lounges, whether you choose to curl up with a good book or get a little extra shut-eye.
After enjoying the spa’s numerous facilities (and getting a little of that shut-eye ourselves) it was treatment time! We both opted for facials, with Julia choosing the Elemis Super Food Radiance Facial and me opting for the Elemis Illuminating Facial. Perfect as a bride pre-wedding treatment, both resulted in radiant, healthy and glowing skin and left us even more relaxed than we thought possible. My therapist Shelley was super gentle and paid attention to every little millimetre of my skin, with the treatment finishing with a hugely refreshing face mask that peeled away to reveal a visibly illuminated complexion.
Following a highly satisfying lunch of soup, salad and cheesecake in the spa restaurant, one more treat lay in store – a blow dry at the spa’s Matthew Curtis Hair salon. We relished in the delight of picking a style from the ‘blow dry menu’ and sipping on prosecco as our hair was washed and dried for us. It was the ultimate way to finish off our luxurious getaway and certainly something we’d recommend to other spa goers who, like ourselves, dread the washing hair chore at the end of the day.
So, whether you’re ready for some down time with the girls, fancy surprising your hubby-to-be with a relaxing break or simply require some quality ‘me time’, we highly suggest a trip to Hoar Cross Hall, just don’t blame us if you end up extending your stay or overspending in the spa shop (guilty as charged!)
Oh, and we must also mention that you can get married at this fabulous stately hall too, so if you’re still on the venue hunt be sure to check out its wonderful big day offering! With a magnificent range of rooms catering for anywhere between two and 120 people, and all the facilities you could possibly need on site to make you and your leading ladies look beautiful from top to toe, we couldn’t think of a finer choice.
hoar cross hall recommends:
Girls Night In Package – This girlie getaway includes overnight accommodation, a sumptuous three-course à la carte dinner, a delicious breakfast and lunch on day of departure, a glass of champagne and snacks in room on arrival, a DVD player and a selection of DVDs in room, plus a onesie for each of the party to wear, a 25-minute taster facial or back massage, full use of our spa and leisure facilities including luxury robe, fluffy towels and slippers.
Ultimate Bridal Makeover Package – Available for the bride and her maids, sit back and relax with a glass of fizz while Hoar Cross Hall’s experts take care of your every beauty need, including bridal hair and makeup, plus a nail shape and polish to show off that beautiful ring in style!
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Rachel joined the Brides Up North editorial team as Features Editor in February 2015. Rachel draws on her news reporting background, experience in features, bridal & lifestyle editing for previous regional titles and time spent working for Yorkshire’s most successful PR agencies. Yet to tie the knot herself, Rachel's own wedding looks set to be very, very pretty...
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