Located just over an hour from London, Pennyhill Park is not much of a secret at the moment.
I was invited for an overnight stay in the beautiful hotel and, eager to experience the award winning spa myself, gratefully accepted.
The hotel side of the grounds are quiet. The house stands majestically wrapped in green and red ivy like an early Christmas present. An ornate patio sweeps around one side leading to a beautiful white pergola, which in turn, looks out over the kitchen garden and woodland beyond.
The spa is one of the biggest in Europe and a favourite amongst the England Rugby Team. With a cap on membership at just 500 people, there’s always space around the pool for those that just fancy getting out of the city on a nice day for a sunbathe.
We had all filled out a questionnaire prior to our visit, which the spa manager had used to create a pre-spa drink for each of us and to match us up with our perfect treatment. I had slightly mis-understood the idea, putting down my favourite spa flavours rather than consumable flavours. This meant that I ended up with a drink consisting of honey, fig and oatmeal rather than yummy strawberries and banana that I would have probably gone for otherwise!
However, I did luck out on my spa treatment. Initially disappointed with my allocation of a facial (who would choose a facial over a massage?!) when I had experienced it, my mind was definitely changed.
With our spa treatment not starting until 6pm, Angie, Ashley and I had an hour to kill by the pool. They ordered Champagne and I went for a fresh mint tea while we caught up, chatted and relaxed in the glorious British summer sunshine.
When it was time, we made our way back past the Ballroom pool (it plays music underwater…!) upstairs towards the spa treatment area. The waiting area looks out over the pool and the old house in tranquility. When it was time for my facial, I was definitely ready to be pampered.
My therapist was lovely and lead me to a sort of blow up tent pod which I’m told is pumped with the purest oxygen you can find to help aid the skins absorption during the facial and to help expel any nasties. My facial was an hour of arm massage, head massage and skin pampering bliss and my skin felt the remnants for a week after, it was incredible.
It was the Mindful Touch Oxygen Facial by Natura Bisse which is a brand I am ashamed to say I hadn’t heard of before, but it’s a favourite among celebs who have the treatment prior to red carpet awards and big ceramonies. At £125 it’s definitely not cheap, but if you have an important event to go to and want to look the best version of yourself with show-stopping skin, it’s worth every penny. Do make sure however, if you’re planning a visit to Pennyhill Park, that you book your treatments at least a few weeks in advance to ensure you’re not disappointed as I was told they fill up VERY quickly!
Peeling myself off the treatment bed, out of my robe and back into my clothes, I had a really quick change into something a little more fancy, before dinner at 7.30pm.
We collectively chose to tackle the full tasting menu and set off on our expedition through the chef’s unbelievable array of dishes. Not one disappointed.
Starting with Champagne.
Freshly baked crusty bread with beef dripping and home made butter.
Truffle Arancini and another delicious canapé that were devoured in seconds!
Bombay mix cones.
Braised Octopus, sesame and miso.
Salt-baked celeriac, remoulade, lovage and Australian truffle.
Braised shoulder of mutton, buttermilk, peas and mint
Can’t remember what fish, but it was delicious in the most creamy of sauces!
Chicken, truffle and caramelised onion tart.
Lavender ice cream.
Passion fruit cream, mango gel and coconut ice cream.
Chocolate délice, milk crumble and yoghurt sorbet.
My bed was the most comfortable I’ve ever slept in and after purposefully leaving the curtains open a touch, I woke up from a blissful sleep to the most beautiful sunshine streaming through the windows.
Laura, Vicky and Ashley left early so Bonnie, Angie and I had breakfast together before Ben came to pick me up at mid day.
P.s. BEST pain au chocolat I’ve EVER tasted.
Although, I was having such a gorgeous time that we didn’t end up leaving until past 5pm.
We ran around the grounds with Pepita until the blue sky disappeared and the heavens opened in a torrent of rain at which point we retreated into the safety of the lounge where I had a doorstop of a sandwich for lunch and Ben chose a wrap.
After lunch, all three of us curled up by the fire, talking and drinking hot cups of tea with shortbread biscuits to dunk in.
If we had brought Pepi’s supper and breakfast, we could have quite happily booked ourselves in for another night and day of pampering in the spa!