It’s not often that I feel overdressed wearing jeans. But as I looked around the restaurant at the Malvern Spa Hotel, realising everyone else was in a robe and slippers, I suspected that here, relaxing wasn’t going to be a problem.
Arriving at the hotel, I’d idly expected it to be in the heart of the Worcestershire countryside, as pretty a location as nearby Great Malvern itself. But while its actual home in a retail park isn’t quite so picturesque, stepping inside whisked me to a luxurious chilled-out bubble.
For the next day, the real world outside wouldn’t exist. With several of my favourite bloggers keeping me company, and a hot stone massage ahead of me, I was switching off in the name of work – and pulling on my own robe at the first opportunity.
The hotel itself may only have been built in 2008 – the first to be constructed in the town since 1910 – but Malvern has a long spa heritage, thanks to the natural spring water from its hills. The Queen still drinks it, Queen Victoria apparently refused to travel without it, and tales of its healing properties date back to the 17th century.
Today the hotel’s location was picked in order to be able to use the water from one of the town’s last remaining boreholes – you can drink it during your stay, there are spa treatments created around it, and even the heated hydrotherapy pools are filled with it.