Stay­ing well is es­pe­cially hard for trav­ellers

The Sunday Telegraph - Travel - - Front Page -

Now that “well­ness” has be­come the ul­ti­mate sta­tus sym­bol, we are all try­ing to avoid its op­po­site, ill­ness, right? The idea is to float through win­ter with a be­atific glow and ir­re­press­ible bounci­ness. If you can talk with au­thor­ity about the lat­est lurgy-fight­ing sup­ple­ment or im­mune-boost­ing recipe while com­mis­er­at­ing with those who have a cold, so much the bet­ter (I jest).

Ev­ery­one knows stay­ing well is es­pe­cially hard for trav­ellers. Any­one who boards a plane on a reg­u­lar ba­sis un­der­stands that the chances of pick­ing up a bug are high. That’s why, as well as swathes of cash­mere, chic fliers have their bags stuffed with prod­ucts to har­ness the an­tibac­te­rial ac­tion of es­sen­tial oils. Laven­der, tea tree and eu­ca­lyp­tus are fa­mous for fight­ing off bugs. I rate de Mamiel Al­ti­tude Oil, £30, from Space NK. Then, on ar­rival, take a bath with Espa Re­sis­tance Bath Oil, £30.

An­other way of stay­ing well? Spa treat­ments – es­pe­cially mas­sage. When we are stressed, our bod­ies are less able to fight off in­fec­tions. A mas­sage that de­creases stress will there­fore help us fight off the cold clearly suf­fered by the man in seat 24B, or the cabin crew’s col­lec­tive cough. Mas­sages are ba­si­cally medic­i­nal, and thus guilt-free.

If you’re look­ing for a spa to de­crease stress lev­els this win­ter, con­sider Bovey Cas­tle in Devon. I only went there be­cause it was close to my fam­ily’s hol­i­day cot­tage. It’s not as cool as Lime Wood, as chic as Barns­ley House or as beau­ti­ful as Clive­den, but it is grand yet friendly and old-school com­fort­able.

Last year Bovey Cas­tle won five red AA stars for ex­cep­tional hos­pi­tal­ity and the staff are al­ways su­per­friendly and ac­com­mo­dat­ing. The ho­tel has a for­mal Great West­ern restau­rant with stiff chairs and se­ri­ously de­li­cious food, plus a much more re­laxed Smith’s Brasserie. The rooms are spa­cious and well ap­pointed. If we’re be­ing sniffy, they have a slight air of the TV makeover show about them, but that is re­flected in the price (see foot­note). There are roar­ing fires, com­fort food and plenty of places to curl up and read the papers. Oh, and break­fast is good too.

The spa is a proper one, with an in­door pool (crit­i­cal in win­ter, when out­side ac­tiv­i­ties are lim­ited), Jacuzzi, sauna and steam room. The gym is less im­pres­sive, and hid­den in the base­ment – but you do have the grounds to ex­plore and beau­ti­ful Dart­moor be­yond. Treat­ments are of the Espa va­ri­ety and are done well. My Orly pedi­cure was great.

A cooler, chicer but pricier win­ter op­tion is Heck­field Place in Hamp­shire. Re­cently opened, it reached mass con­scious­ness when it hosted Liv Tyler and Derek Blas­berg be­fore Princess Eu­ge­nie’s wed­ding. A grand, im­pos­ing Ge­or­gian-style house with beau­ti­ful grounds, it has rooms that are su­per-luxe and mod­ern in the man­ner of Soho House ho­tel – and the food is ov­fight­erseen by the ac­claimed Skye Gyn­gell. You could eas­ily spend all week­end in the house and not need to ven­ture out.

The spa, called Lit­tle Bothy, is small but per­fectly formed, all cos­set­ing smells, low-level light­ing and snug­gly blan­kets. It uses

The spa treat­ment room at Bovey Cas­tle

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.