Waking up to more snow on Easter Monday only drove home how epically long winter has felt with the relentless cold weather affecting not only our heating bills (we dread to think!) but also our skin and energy levels – both of which could do with an almighty boost.
As a newly-engaged bride-to-be I’m also feeling the effects of trying to keep on top of the early wedding planning, while keeping all in the loop – oh and plan my brother’s stag do and assist on my best friend’s hen do as well. So, all in all a lot on, which super exciting but a little depleting on the batteries.
The perfect remedy for a change of season and busy schedule though has to be a spa break, and so when Staffordshire based Moddershall Oaks got in touch with the offer of an overnight stay to switch off from the outside world and restore balance, I took it up quicker than Made in Chelsea’s Jamie Laing can tell a girl he’s falling in love with her.
Situated in a rural location near the market town of Stone, Moddershall Oaks is a country spa retreat and idyllic wedding venue – so it could tick two boxes for those of you still on the venue hunt. Whilst there I did get to view its stunning and flexible spaces for weddings – including a gorgeous oak gazebo surrounded by tranquil woodland for beautiful outdoor ceremonies – and would certainly encourage couples planning to wed in the Staffordshire area to pay this place a visit.
Though not particularly worn out from the wedding planning (though he must be exhausted from all the stag do preparation – a number one priority from grooms it would seem *rolls eyes*), my fiancée Andy was lucky enough to join me on this getaway. We arrived at Moddershall around noon on a Wednesday and was welcomed by a warm atmosphere, friendly staff and a strawberry Bellini (start as you mean to go on, right?)
Having filled in a few quick forms we were given a run through the facilities and our (very relaxed) itinerary for our stay, before being shown to one of the gorgeous ten 5* boutique bedroom suites to drop off our bags. The room was comforting, spacious and beautifully decorated, plus there is access to a shared hot tub, should we want to continue the pampering after visiting the main facilities.
Amazingly, we fell on a gorgeous spring-like day with clear blue skies (I will add that it had snowed either side of our visit) and so we wasted no time in heading to the crème de la crème of Moddershall, its outdoor heated vitality pool. Here we enjoyed bathing in the bubbling hot water in the open air made complete by a countryside views, oh and a couple of glasses of prosecco delivered direct via waiter service – this was our kind of spa!
We were joined in the courtyard area by other couples, as well as a few small groups of women and a couple of (I assume) mothers and daughters, which demonstrated how perfect the spa is for a romantic getaway as well as much-needed girly time.
After drying off in the Kelo sauna, also located in the courtyard, we retired to the relaxing lounge area indoors to recline on big sofas next to a warming fire and filled up on afternoon treats of cake and coffee.
Next it was treatment time – having only just managed to convince Andy of the benefits of moisturising daily, it didn’t surprise me that he passed on this, but the metrosexuals out there will be pleased to hear that Moddershall has blissful treatment options for both males and females.
The options ranged from massage, detox and body therapies, carried out by experienced therapists in the cosy treatment rooms, to a full range of beauty treatments undertaken in The Snug. This gorgeous area is available to hire privately for hen dos, birthdays and the like and, for Moddershall brides, it can also be taken over pre-wedding for big day pampering and preening, complete with nibbles, bubbly and music.
Given my desire to totally unwind I opted for the Elemis Couture Touch – a personalised facial combined with a hot stone massage for head-to-toe relaxation. My therapist Debbie worked her magic with the hot stones, which quickly soothed any aching muscles, before using Elemis products that would help to balance my (awkward) combination skin during the facial, including Lime Blossom Cleanser, Lavender Toner and Papaya Enzyme Peel. This resulted in fresh, energised skin that visually glowed (if only I could have one a week!)
To complete my pampering, I had a beautifully deep bath back in the room before getting ready for dinner and heading to Moddershall’s award-winning restaurant. Welcomed by staff we were talked through the menu and ordered a glass of wine while considering the options. Both instantly drawn to the delicious sounding desserts we decided to go mains and sweets. I chose the fillet of plaice served with sauté potatoes, spinach, samphire, pancetta and herb cream while Andy tucked into 28-day aged Staffordshire sirloin steak accompanied by paprika triple cooked ships, mushroom gratin and a red wine sauce. Both were flavoursome and filling, though we managed to fit in dessert of lemon and white chocolate cheesecake with raspberry ripple ice cream and berry compote, which almost looked too good to be eat, though we still managed to polish off every last bit of it.
Full and content we headed back to our room where we enjoyed a restful night’s sleep before rising early to make the most of the indoor spa facilities. We started our day with a swim in the 10-metre pool and a dip in the hydrotherapy pool then cleared our sinuses in the eucalyptus-milk-infused steam room and awakened the senses via the ‘experience shower’.
Having worked up an appetite we returned to the restaurant where we had dined the previous evening for hearty breakfast – salmon and scrambled eggs for me and a full English (of course!) for him. At this point heavy snow showers began to fall, signalling the time for us to depart with hopes of making it back to Sheffield without the need for a husky-led sleigh.
For those whose encounter more favourable weather during their visit, there is much more that can be explored and experienced, including 72 acres of surrounding woodland – on bike or foot – plus an outdoor tennis court. Keen not to rest on their laurels, Moddershall is also in the process of expanding its already impressive facilities to include a new, fully-equipped gym and yoga rooms.
Our visit gave us everything we could wish for and more with its fabulous spa, stunning accommodation and first-class food ticking all the boxes – not to mention its amazing staff who are among the most friendly, warm and attentive I have ever experienced, really making you feel like you don’t have to lift a finger.
As such I would undoubtedly recommend Moddershall Oaks as an ideal romantic getaway location as well as a heavenly option for the hen do or pre-wedding girly break. Those who hold their wedding at the venue can also make use of the spa facilities for pre-big-day-prep and post relaxation – what could be more blissful?
Moddershall Oaks has created a delicious menu of three new limited-edition 25-minute treatments designed to help guests step into spring and take them back to full bloom, available exclusively until May 2018.
Rosemary and Guarana Body Wrap, £30 – perfect for skin in need of some heavenly hydration. This treatment combines the benefit of rosemary with guarana seed extract, brimming with caffeine to reduce puffiness and sooth the skin whilst also directly targeting cellulite.
Dark Chocolate Melting Body Wrap, £30 – This decadent chocolate body wrap has a wealth of minerals such as magnesium and zinc, known for detoxifying and cleansing, promoting firmness and elasticity in the skin.
Wild Rose Body Scrub, £30 – This gentle but extremely effective scrub is ideal for exfoliating dead skin cells away and leaving skin feeling revived, refreshed and rehydrated.
Complete Blissful Wellbeing, from £165 each – Spa day complete with attentive and intensely relaxing Elemis Couture Touch (55-minute), luxurious pampering with a Mini Manicure or Mini Pedicure (25 minutes) and a delicious two-course lunch.
Natural Serenity, from £390 per night based on two sharing a studio suite – This perfect countryside escape includes a welcome drink, full use of the spa. Neom de-stress massage treatment (25 minutes), a delicious two course dinner and overnight stay in a luxurious 5* boutique suite, plus breakfast the following day and more spa-ing!