LIVING was invited to try out the Fishmore Hall spa in Ludlow including an outdoor hot tub and ice bucket experience!
When an invitation to review the spa at boutique hotel, Fishmore Hall, landed in my inbox, I jumped at the chance to head for the Shropshire hills and indulge in an afternoon of luxury.
For anyone who isn’t familiar with Fishmore Hall, it’s a contemporary, 15-bedroom hotel, minutes from the historic foodie town of Ludlow. Built in 1810, the property was once used as a grand residence, before becoming a highly respected school in WWII.
The building was left to fall into a derelict state, only to be discovered by current owner, Laura Penman, who, at the tender age of 27, single-handedly took on the project to return the property to its former glory as a hotel in October 2007.
So, with my partner in tow (an excuse to enjoy a ‘grown-up’ trip together – a rare occurrence as parents to a 3-year old!) we left the town behind and travelled through the glorious countryside. The closer we got to our destination, the more I could feel myself relaxing; the stress of day-to-day life melting away, so when we drew up to the hotel’s entrance, I was perfectly primed for the experience ahead.
Fishmore Hall Spa – a real treat
On entering the property, we were invited to take a seat in the hotel’s homely lounge area, where we were soon joined by hotel owner, Laura Penman, who extremely welcoming and gave us a personal tour of the new facilities.
The spa, which was built offsite before being literally picked up and placed by crane in the hotel grounds, is clad in Siberian larch wood and incorporates clever use of natural light in the treatment rooms.
There are four treatment rooms in total, which combine to create two couple’s rooms, two thermal cabins housing a steam room and sauna, as well as an outdoor wellness pool and oversized hammock on the decking, both overlooking the fields and Shropshire hills. For braver guests, there is also an outdoor bucket and monsoon drench shower – more on that later!
With a range of luxury treatments on offer from British brand Elemis, plus specialist pregnancy treatments and dedicated men’s treatments, spa lovers will be spoilt for choice. For those wishing to experience something new, the spa also offers the pioneering Biotec skincare system that has been scientifically designed to visibly re-energise complexions, alongside a range of signature treatments created for Fishmore Hall by SpaShell™, including the Lava Shell massage using the world’s first self-heating massage tool.
Elemis treatments at Fishmore Hall Spa
I was treated to an Elemis Body Nectar Nourishing Wrap. For 25 minutes, Monoi Oil with Frangipani was massaged into my body from head to toe, before I was wrapped in a warm cocoon as the oils conditioned my skin.
I definitely chose well – the result was fantastic – my skin had never been smoother and I felt as though it had been thoroughly nourished.
The spa is quite intimate – and while it accommodated us perfectly, we had the advantage of being one of only two couples on site, so didn’t have to wait around to use the facilities, or feel pressured to rush our experience. Booking ahead is recommended, although if you want to experience the spa as we did, it can be booked exclusively for private hire – perfect for a girlie weekend or hen ‘do’, especially if the bride is taking advantage of the hotel’s wedding licence.
Feeling quite daring considering it was mid-October, we decided to brave the outdoor bucket. With memories of the ice bucket challenge flooding back (literally), we were doused with freezing cold water. Fortunately, I had the foresight to ensure that the monsoon shower was primed ready to bring life back to my extremities. Unfortunately, my partner wasn’t quite so organised (very amusing!).
We rounded off our spa experience with a dip in the hot tub – one of the highlights of the afternoon. As we overlooked the stunning countryside, with only a herd of cows for company, we could have been anywhere.
Food is one of the main attractions at Fishmore Hall, and with its close proximity to Ludlow – renowned for its quality food and drink and farmers’ markets, it offers the perfect base for a weekend of indulgence. I could well imagine nipping into town to check out produce on offer from the local artisans, then heading back to the hotel for a few luxurious treatments before sampling the hotel’s rich menu. Indeed, Fishmore Hall is perfectly appointed to offer ‘retox’ packages as easily as traditional detox opportunities.
Badged as a “sophisticated and indulgent spa experience” and rural getaway, Fishmore Hall is certainly that. Try it for yourself? Visit Fishmore Hall Spa for further information about the spa including all facilities and treatments or call 01584 875148.
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