Beauty Editor Lisa Oxenham relaxes in this luxurious countryside retreat
With 440 acres of beautiful grounds, a world-class golf course, tennis courts, pools and a state-of-the-art health spa all centered around a postcard pretty manor house, Foxhills is your quintessential countryside getaway. And the best bit? I managed to get to this luxurious 'rural' retreat after just a 40-minute drive from central London.
The family-run complex revolves around the gorgeous manor house, home to the hotel reception and Manor restaurant, where I feasted on a goat’s cheese salad followed by red mullet in the evening and a great buffet breakfast in the morning. They also do a very reasonable set menu dinner and a Sunday carvery, which looked like they provided excellent DFM (deliciousness for money).
Beyond this historic building are newer developments set in the stunning grounds, including accommodation areas comprised of cute bungalows, that give a village-y feel and the sandstone Lyne House building, which although a new construction, has a touch of Cotswolds charm. The quirky outdoor pool and summer gazebo (which doubles as beauty treatment room) are a neat addition, although the sub zero temperatures of this visit meant they were sadly out of bounds, a dram of whiskey in front of an open fire being more apposite.
The spa and sports facilities are first rate. I went for a blissfully warming Hot Stone Treatment [£60 for 60 minutes] followed by a leisurely afternoon reading the Sunday papers and lounging by the pool. My relaxing was only interrupted with the odd bracing dash into the spa garden and the toastie haven of the outdoor sauna and hot tub. There is also an alfresco plunge pool, naturally purified by water plants. Although once again, Jack Frost (and my squeamishness at the slightly murky water) put paid to any ideas of getting my plunge on.
There was no time (or inclination) to play on the championship golf course, but I did go an invigorating run around the hotel’s 'trim trail' that weaves through woodland and the beautifully kept course for over five kilometres. There was no time for tennis, either, but the facilities are top notch with 10 courts. With a designated youth club, a teen gym, family pool and play areas this is also a great spot for families.
Drawbacks? Not many. It is a members club as well as a hotel, so the facilities can get busy, particularly with golfers on Saturdays. But the place is so vast, varied and with so many different things to do, this never became a problem.
The place’s motto is simple: 'When you leave Foxhills, you will feel better than when you arrived.' I have to say that I did.
OFFER: Enjoy the Spa Getaway package for £180pp for the first night and stay the second night for just £70 a room.
Package includes: Two nights bed and breakfast, a dinner in the manor and a spa lunch, full use of the spa and country club facilities including a traditional Swedish massage, an Elemis mini radiance booster facial and a Foxhills collection kit.
Call 01932 704500 and quote Marie Claire. Or visit: www.foxhills.co.uk
Offer ends: 31st March 2011
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