The best new UK spa gardens of 2023

Outdoors offerings are fast becoming a spa staple … five have opened in the UK in 2023


By Wendy Golledge

05 September 2023

The shift towards connecting spa guests with the outside world shows no sign of slowing. In 2023, five UK spas have opened new spa gardens and more have announced plans to do so in the coming year.

Spa gardens have moved on from being simple outdoor spaces to becoming an essential part of new builds and refurbishments. They can add an entirely new dimension to the wellbeing offer, while connecting guests with nature and the outdoors.

European Spa rounds up our pick of the best new spa gardens that have opened this year.

Manor House spa garden
Manor House Alsager's garden formed the second phase of an ambitious spa development

Manor House Alsager: an English country spa garden

Late last year, Manor House Alsager expanded its spa offering to include an English country spa garden. This summer, the independent family-owned hotel in Cheshire completed its redevelopment with a new swim-up spa bar that is accessible from the large outdoor heated vitality pool.

The spa is also the first in the UK to install outdoor underfloor heating, while each of the unique hanging beds is also individually heated.

The garden spa has a panoramic laconicum with swing seats that overlook the fields, a table-top hydrotherapy pool set in a formal sunken garden, and a number of experiences housed in garden buildings.

These include a salt-steam inhalation chamber, the potting shed herbal sauna and an ice plunge bath and shower experience.

Manor House Alsager's hydro pool
Manor house alsager swim up bar
The swim-up bar at Manor House Alsager

Grantley Hall: Nordic spa garden

The Yorkshire hotel’s Three Graces Spa opened a Nordic spa garden in July.

It features two bespoke ice baths from Brass Monkey, plus an outdoor hydrotherapy pool.

The spa garden also includes a bespoke steam sauna with scenic views of the surrounding grounds, and an outdoor hydrotherapy pool.

Taking its inspiration from the daughters of Greek god Zeus – Euphrosyne, Aglaea and Thalia – Three Graces Spa also has a Barr + Wray-designed wet spa area and an indoor-to-outdoor vitality hydrotherapy pool.

Three Graces Spa's Nordic spa garden in Yorkshire

Ellenborough Park: spa garden retreat

Located in a private walled garden near to the 15th-century manor house, Ellenborough Park’s spa garden retreat includes a private outdoor hot tub, sauna cabin and sun loungers.

A Norwegian aluminium pergolux with a louvred ceiling protects the garden from the elements. The year-round facility is accessed via a wooden pergola.

Marwan Hemchaoui, general manager at Ellenborough Park, said: “We felt there was a need for such an offering. The beauty of this spa garden retreat, which is centred around wellness and situated in a private area, away from our spa in the historic 15th-century manor house, is that it can be used 365 days a year, whatever the weather.”

The pergolux at Ellenborough Park in Gloucestershire

Pennyhill Park: private cabanas

Pennyhill Park, part of the Exclusive Collection, unveiled four private spa cabanas with copper bathtubs and personal spa loungers in July.

Designed by Sparcstudio, the cabanas feature a coffee machine, a fridge with stocked soft drinks, a phone charging point and lockable storage for personal belongings.

Each cabana is named after a different herb – Bergamot, Lemon Thyme, Peppermint and Sorrel. The corresponding namesake herb has been planted around each cabana.

outdoor hot tub and lounger in a luxury spa garden
Pennyhill Park's spa cabanas were designed by Spracstudio
two people sitting on lounge chairs at an outdoor spa

Rudding Park: woodland spring bathing experience

Also new this summer, the woodland spring bathing experience at Rudding Park offers guests two private fresh water tubs, immersed in the surrounding landscape.

The tubs, supplied by Kirami UK, are enhanced by added extras including a magnesium mineral ‘bomb’ to help boost magnesium levels. Guests can also apply a detoxifying moorish mud mask.

Rich in magnesium, calcium and sodium, the water used in the tubs is from Rudding Park’s own aquifer. It has no added chemicals, and no chlorine.

Two women in outdoor hot tub
A personal host prepares the tubs for each guest and is also on hand to serve drinks

More inspired spa garden ideas

Late last year, Kimpton Blythswood Square opened a new winter spa garden called Thaw – the city’s first outdoor spa. The seasonal-inspired retreat features an open-air hydrotherapy hot tub, luxury saunas and a steam room.

Armathwaite Hall Hotel and Spa in the Lake District has invested £1m into the development of eight new spa garden suites, to connect guests with the greenery of the landscape that sits directly outside each room.

Soho Farmhouse’s Lazy Lake outdoor wellness space includes a contrast therapy circuit with an ice room, steam room and three infrared sauna cabins.

The semi-wilderness setting also features four onsen-style baths, each sunk into the lake itself and all supplied by DaleSauna.

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