Charlotte Balbier

blissed out bride: slaley hall golf resort & spa

June 14th, 2016 | Rachel Parry

Slaley Hall Spa (3)

Ladies, we all know the affects that stress can have on our bodies; from aching muscles and skin flare ups, to dark under-eye circles and generally feeling worn out. As one of the most stressful (but enjoyable, we hope) events you can experience in life, it’s little wonder that couples planning weddings can really feel the pressure, both inside and out.

This is why we highly recommend taking a relaxing break from the wedding schedule now and again to recharge the batteries and gather your thoughts, while treating your mind, body and soul. And what better way to do so than booking into a spa resort, whether just for the day or an indulgent minibreak.

Keen to point our readers in the direction of fabulous retreats in the North where they can escape to for solace – and a flippin good massage, we’ve been out on our Blissed Out Bride travels once again.

This time our destress-destination was Slaley Hall golf resort and spa hotel, located in a secluded area of Northumberland. Following our full-on, yet fabulous, season of spring wedding fairs across the north of the country, we were literally crying out for some R&R and so sped up the A1 for a well-deserved Slaley spa day.

Slaley Hall Spa (4)

As part of the Q Hotel group, the historic hall, set in 1,000 acres of stunning countryside, includes a range of accommodation and eating and drinking facilities, as well as a choice of beautiful function suites, which are available for weddings. Meanwhile outdoors Slaley boasts two championship golf courses and stunning grounds, upon which marquees can be pitched for outdoor celebrations.

The part of its facilities we were looking forward to viewing most however, was its luxury spa. Safely changed into our comforting robes and slippers we headed straight to pool side for some light refreshments and a little magazine time (one of our very favourite ways to unwind) – the pressure on our shoulders instantly lifted. As we stretched back on our loungers the humidity of the room acted as a warming cocoon and we had all on to keep our eyes open – talk about optimum conditions for relaxing!

An impressive space, Slaley’s pool area has a lovely holiday feel about it with tropical plants dotted around the pool, waterfalls and Jacuzzi, and little bridges linking the different areas together.

Slaley Hall Spa (6)

It was soon lunchtime so we were shown through to one of Slaley’s three restaurants (still wrapped in our robes) to receive our spa day lunch. Presented in a neat Bento Box we enjoyed a healthy (ish) yet satisfying meal of chicken salad with cous cous, vegetable sticks and dip, followed by a lovely piece of chocolate cake, which was all washed down with a tall glass of fizz. We felt this provided he perfect combination of clean and treat eating (both we feel are essential to keep a girl heathy and happy!).

Once the food had settled it was back to the pool for a little snoozing and swimming, whilst also taking some time to detox and clear our skin in the sauna.

Though we didn’t muster the strength to visit (shame on us), Slaley also boasts a health club with state-of-the-art equipment and experienced instructors, to help you reach any pre-wedding fitness goals. Feeling the need for some ultra-pampering, we were booked in for a treatment each and so made our way to the gorgeous relaxation room, complete with soft sofas and beds, to meet our knowledgeable Espa therapists. As I’m soon to be jetting off on my jollies I wanted a treatment that would refresh my skin and really make it glow while still soothing my tired muscles while Julia, who is soon to be expecting a second bundle of joy, required a relaxing facial treatment to prevent any pregnancy break-outs.

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blissed out bride: rudding park

March 22nd, 2016 | Rachel Parry

Rudding Park (11)

In our hectic day-to-day lives we tend to think that taking a quick bath, painting our nails or flicking through a magazine qualifies as indulging in a little ‘me time’ – but when was the last time you had more than a full hour to concentrate on your own wellbeing?

Same here, it’s not something we get to do often – so when we are offered the chance, we jump at it! It will therefore come as little surprise that a recent invitation to visit luxury Yorkshire hotel and spa Rudding Park, to sample its new spa and beauty brand, ila, was quickly responded to with a great big “yes please”.

Set amongst beautiful landscaped gardens and woodland in a leafy area of Harrogate, rudding park was already on our radar for its high-end weddings, some of which have graced our pretty blog pages – and so were keen to experience its impressive facilities for ourselves.

Rudding Park (10)

The privately owned, AA 4 Red Star hotel boasts a choice of stunning bedrooms and suites as well as a spa with a gym, private cinema, 2 AA Rosette Clocktower restaurant and 18 hole parkland golf course, making it an ideal getaway for brides and grooms in the run up to their big day for a little wedding-planning-time-out, or after the celebrations as a perfect minimoon retreat. We’d also recommend it as a haven for brides-to-be to escape to with their mum, sibling or close friends for a little pampering and de-stressing ahead of ‘I dos’.

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Upon arrival at the hotel we received a warm welcome from staff (as well as a roaring open fire) before being shown to our accommodation, which was one of Rudding Park’s four spa rooms, complete with private steam room, Molton Brown goodies and contemporary décor – we already knew that we’d never want to leave.

Next up a tour by hotel manager Nuno, who knows everything there is to know about the splendid building. Given our line of work we were keen to see the rooms and areas available to brides and grooms who choose to host their wedding at Rudding Park – and it wasn’t long before we could see the great appeal.

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Location, Location, Location! Supplier Showcase: Sykes Cottages

January 21st, 2013 | Julia Braime

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Slipping away to a cottage retreat in the middle of nowhere (or somewhere near to spas and shopping where the neighbours can’t hear your raucous singing) for one last “relaxing” weekend with the girls might be expected as your big day approaches, but have you considered a holiday cottage as a potential venue for the wedding day itself?

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In my job as a full time and bridal features writer, I come across gems of wedding venues all the time – from the stately and sublime to the cosy and chic, but I must admit that I hadn’t considered the option of hiring a holiday cottage to host a private and personal wedding celebration until I was approached by Brides Up North sponsor Sykes Cottages

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Why haven’t I thought of this before? 

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Sykes Cottages manage a veritable smorgasbord of beautiful holiday homes which are available to hire for your special day.  Think about it – it’s a wedding “at home” (the dream home of your choice, selected from a vast variety of options that you can browse online), but “on location” at the same time.  Choose your property, location, length of stay and any added extras… then send out the save the dates.  And, as the mini-moon and staycation remain as popular as ever,  the after the event possibilities are endless too.

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Genius.  Maybe that girly get-away can wait…

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Sykes Cottages - Alternative Wedding Venues & Honeymoons

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Amanda of Sykes Cottages says: So you’ve got the ring (congratulations!) and now you can look forward to the next few weeks and months of planning every little detail of your big day. From the dress to the flowers and the transport, your ‘to-do’ list seems endless.

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When it comes to the venue, your decision is crucial as the venue itself will dictate the tone of the entire day. Whether you choose a grand stately home, your childhood church or an outdoor location, choosing the venue is one of the biggest and most difficult decisions before the big day. But if a grand property isn’t quite what you have in mind, perhaps a more intimate wedding venue would fit the bill.

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Sykes Cottages - Alternative Wedding Venues & Honeymoons

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Sykes Cottages - Alternative Wedding Venues & Honeymoons

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Finding a holiday cottage ideal for your wedding isn’t as difficult as you might think. Choose a grand property set in beautiful grounds for the wow factor with an intimate feel or a more traditional cottage for a romantic, outdoorsy style. Some properties even have a dance floor, offer a private chef and maid service to ensure your nuptials go without a hitch.

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Sykes Cottages - Alternative Wedding Venues & Honeymoons

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Sykes Cottages - Alternative Wedding Venues & Honeymoons

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Feeling at home at the venue a few days before the wedding should help settle those last minute nerves on the big day. Book a make-up artist or hairdresser so you and your bridesmaids kick start the day in style. If you’re planning a big day with a home-spun feel, choosing a property to accommodate all the guests in the run up to the wedding is a great choice: make use of the willing volunteers and create a truly unique backdrop to your big day.

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Sykes Cottages - Alternative Wedding Venues & Honeymoons

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Sykes Cottages - Alternative Wedding Venues & Honeymoons

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Sykes Cottages - Alternative Wedding Venues & Honeymoons

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Wherever you choose to celebrate your big day, choosing a holiday cottage for the occasion is a good way to guarantee a totally unique wedding. Pick a holiday cottage in some of the UK’s most stunning countryside for exceptional wedding photos that you’ll love forever.

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Sykes Cottages - Alternative Wedding Venues & Honeymoons

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Sykes Cottages - Alternative Wedding Venues & Honeymoons

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Instead of disappearing on honeymoon towards the end of the reception, many couples now choose to enjoy the first few days of wedded bliss closer to home before embarking on their honeymoon to remember later on. While tradition dictates that the groom to be is responsible for planning (and financing!) the honeymoon, it certainly doesn’t hurt you to drop a few hints in the lead-up to the big day!

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Choosing a holiday cottage is a really great way to combine the high-end finish of a boutique hotel with all the privacy you want in your first few days as a married couple. Find honeymoon accommodation with a private hot tub and celebrate with a glass of champagne under the stars for the perfect start to married life any time of year.

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For a summer honeymoon, why not choose a holiday cottage with access to a swimming pool or by a secluded beach for a wonderful few days. Winter brides might prefer a cosy, traditional cottage with a roaring log fire for romantic days and nights in. Wherever you choose to spend those first few days as Mr and Mrs, you’re sure to leave with memories to treasure.

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Sykes Cottages - Alternative Wedding Venues & Honeymoons

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Sykes Cottages - Alternative Wedding Venues & Honeymoons

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Sykes Cottages - Alternative Wedding Venues & Honeymoons

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Got your mind whirring?  Thought as much!  For more information, visit the Sykes Cottages website to find your perfect wedding venue or honeymoon destination.

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  – Images © 2013 supplied by Sykes Cottages

This is a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier 

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog

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Let Them Eat Cake! A Bride & Groom Direct Competition (CLOSED)

June 22nd, 2011 | Julia Braime

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Did you enter the Bride & Groom Direct Facebook Proposal Story Competition to win a fabulous mini break worth £500?  Why ever not? 

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog Bride & Groom Direct Facebook Contest

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Meanwhile, Bride & Groom Direct have a special treat for Brides Up North wedding blog readers.  That’s right, YOU!  They are just plying you lucky Brides Up North with giveaways

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Bride & Groom Direct are giving one lucky wedding blog reader the chance to win a stunning silver plated knife and cake server set which can be engraved with your names and wedding date. 

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog: Bride & Groom Direct Silver Plated Knife and Cake Server

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To enter, all you have to do is leave a comment on this post (find the link right at the foot of this post) telling Brides Up North why you should win*

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Adorable! 

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The competition will close on 22 July 2011

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*Entrants will be subscribed to the Brides Up North Monthly Newsletter.  I would never sell your email address on, so don’t worry.  Winner will be chosen at random.

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Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © Bride & Groom Direct

This is a sponsored post

Contact Brides Up North to submit your business as a Featured Supplier 

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Brides Up North Wedding Blog

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