Consistently nominated and winning prestigious awards such as Lancashire Life’s Hotel of The Year and Best Spa Hotel in The Good Spa Guide, I had high hopes for my recent visit to Ribby Hall in Lytham St Annes.
A beautiful Spa Hotel is certainly not what i’d expect to find just 20 minutes drive from the Blackpool illuminations, but making our way up the drive past Ribby’s Restaurant, Tapas bar, Swimming pool, riding centre and holiday chalets to a beautiful water fountain in front of the main Spa hotel, I could tell we were going to be in for a real treat.
The Spa Hotel is a relatively recent addition to Ribby Hall Village, a family run business that has grown from initially providing on-site holiday home rentals to a luxury 5 star self catering resort with an abundance of facilities and activities for children and grown ups alike. We were invited to review our experience at the Spa and decide whether it truly deserves its title as best spa in the North West.
I’ve mentioned this before, but I’m a girl that likes a bargain. I like to feel like I’ve been fully and utterly spoiled rotten, but without rotting away my bank balance in the process. So the first thing that struck me about Ribby’s spa package, is the pricing. A spa break including a night’s stay in the hotel with both dinner and breakfast is available from £99 per person, or £129 per person including two treatments. Considering that I’ve paid £99 for a room in a budget hotel when I’ve been away with work, that certainly didn’t include food or spa facilities; i’m extremely impressed with this. To be honest, I thought there must be a catch – it must be an average spa if this is the price? However entering the women’s locker room and changing into our swimming gear and luxuriously fluffy dressing gowns before walking into Ribby’s Aqua Thermal Journey gave me the same giddy feeling as when you find a £10 note on the floor.
When I’ve previously visited Spa Hotels, I’ve always felt slightly underwhelmed by the facilities that don’t require you to pay extra. There’s usually a small sauna and steam room and token plunge pool, but after about 30 minutes you’ve experienced all there is to do, leaving slightly red faced and dehydrated, but not necessarily rested and relaxed. At Ribby however, they have designed an Aqua Thermal journey to take you through seven stages of pampering bliss to fully rejuvenate and revive your tired body and mind.
There’s a range of different steam rooms and saunas that all vary in temperature and therefore intensity. I especially loved the steam room that smelled of Lavender – a welcome change from the steam room I use at my gym that smells of sweaty feet!
The large hydrotherapy pool is also one of the best and biggest I’ve experienced at a UK spa with underwater reclining mosaic seating so that you can fully relax while immersed in the bubbles.
After a very relaxing hour and a half exploring the range of facilities, including outdoor seating pods and an extra large hot tub, we made our way into The Orangery restaurant to enjoy a spot of lunch and champagne.
The Orangery is exactly what you want from a Spa Day restaurant; it’s beautifully decorated yet has a very relaxing and friendly atmosphere with attentive waiters that go out of their way to make sure you’re comfortable and content. The menu appears to be unassuming, with a selection of sandwiches, traditional English food and pasta dishes, but the food is truly exquisite. I opted for the Spinach and Ricotta Ravioli and squeaked in delight when my beautifully presented pasta parcels arrived at our table, plated so delicately with flowers I could barely bring myself to break the artistic masterpiece. The filling was creamy, fresh and incredibly moreish with the pasta cooked to perfection. I hardly ever eat pasta and see it as a real treat, which this dish definitely was.
As a very special treat and to celebrate one year of the Cotton Tales blog, we are delighted to be giving away a Spa Day for two to Ribby Hall Village! The prize includes Afternoon Tea For Two and use of the facilities at Ribby’s Aqua Thermal Journey and all you have to do to enter is subscribe our blog using the contact form below:
UK entrants only. Winners announced on 5th November 2015.