Spa breaks are becoming more popular and, what's even better, you do not have to drive far to find a good one.
Less than 30 minutes from Northampton is the popular Whittlebury Park, which offers hotel, leisure, spa, wedding and event facilities set in 700 acres of grounds.
Known as Whittlebury Hall and Spa, the rural retreat was recently renamed Whittlebury Park as a milestone for the UK's hospitality market.
His future goal is to become one of the leading independent leisure and hospitality establishments in the UK here in Northamptonshire.
In 2018, significant investments were made in Whittlebury facilities to directly enhance and enhance the customer experience. These included updating the kitchen equipment and rooms as well as half a million pounds invested in the leisure club, which is now state of the art Technogym equipment.
What could be nicer than paying a visit to Whittlebury, though I have to admit that we did not train at the fabulous new gym because, frankly, we were too busy doing nothing, and just not enough hours a day.
Me and two friends packed our bags and headed to the complex for 24 hours after booking the Couture Retreat with a booster treatment package available from £ 129 per person.
The package includes the use of thermal and ice experiences, a leisure club, a two-course lunch buffet and a 25-minute treatment.
Then a three-course meal at the Astons Restaurant, overnight and a full English breakfast.
You can choose from ESPA or Elemis Radiance Glow Facials, Express Manicure or Pedicure, or an Elemis Frangipani scalp massage.
Check in for this package at noon and check out at 11:00 the next day.
We wanted to get started and were welcomed to the front desk, followed by a quick change of dressing gowns (if available, but bring your own slippers / flip-flops) before leaving for lunch to start the celebration.
Immediate relaxation as we sit down to gossip over a bottle of Prosecco (for an extra charge) and enjoy the hot and cold buffet of soup, bread, salads, pasta and a selection of hot entrees.
The main focus of the Day Spa is on the huge whirlpool, where heat and ice prevail, including the ice cave (for the most daring), the crystal steam bath, the Caldarium, experience showers, foot baths, the ice cave and the Roman salt steam bath, sanarium, tepidarium and Sauna.
Enjoy the hours in the hydrotherapy pool and try the different heat and ice experiences.
When it was time for our treatments, we headed upstairs to wait for the comfortable sofas requested by our therapists.
The spa can get crowded at peak times, but it all seems to run like clockwork and never seems to be overcrowded.
We all opted for the scalp massage and enjoyed 25 minutes of pampering in each treatment room – it was bliss.
After feeling completely relaxed, we enjoyed the facilities of the leisure club, including the 19-meter swimming pool with bubble jets and sun loungers all around.
There's so much more to it, including the gym, hair studio, extra treatments (for a fee) and a variety of classes.
The only problem is to assemble everything!
After a busy day we did not do anything, we retired to our triple room in the hotel, which is within easy walking distance of the spa.
Our room was huge and spotless with an incredible shower and comfy beds for plunge.
Dressed for dinner, we went back down to dinner at the Astons, which offers a relaxed, informal atmosphere with the sound of laid-back guests.
The menus combine classic and modern cuisine with a touch of continental inspiration, complemented by a selection of wines from around the world.
The staff at Whittlebury are excellent and nothing is too much trouble from the front desk, spa, restaurant and bar.
We were well looked after and the food was of excellent quality. Three courses later we were full but satisfied and had no complaints.
Opposite the restaurant is the Silverstone Bar, filled with sporting memorabilia that offers a brilliant atmosphere at any time of the day.
We enjoyed drinks after dinner before retiring to our beds for a well-deserved sleep.
A full English breakfast the following morning rounded out our stay before check-out and included everything from cereal, toast and fruit to a full English breakfast and croissants.
Whittlebury impresses again and again. You want more of what you are offered – afternoon tea, golf, a beautiful walk through the grounds, tribute nights and weddings.
Unfortunately, there are not enough hours a day. I think you have to choose what you want to do next and register for another visit before rejuvenating yourself back to reality.
No doubt there will be much more in the coming months and years in Whittlebury as the construction of luxury apartments is already under way.
Against this background, I am already planning my next visit.