hotels / spa / Travel

Emma Hoareau

Emma Hoareau
June 27, 2018



I love London and am so glad I moved back two years ago. But sometimes it does get a bit too much, as work does manage to get the best of me and I can find it really draining to be constantly ‘on’ when I don’t take a proper time out from it (I definitely find it hard to switch off, and a quick scroll is never out of reach…) A week or so ago I had reached breaking point and knew I needed to take some time away to switch off – even just for a night.

So when Thyme asked me to come and stay in the Cotswolds for a night to take a look at their brand new spa, it couldn’t have been more perfect timing. I had visited the hotel last August, but since then they’ve added the brand new Lodge building, outdoor pool, yoga studio and spa. This October they’ll also be adding a restaurant and some extra stand alone rooms. If you’re looking for a city-escape, this is it.

This thyme around (sorry, had to) we had a delicious lunch in the main barn – so many fresh vegetables and fruit, most of which is grown on site. Then we had some down time – so of course I jumped in the extravagantly big stand alone bath in my bathroom, and tried to switch off (but then accidentally answered some emails and took a couple calls, but still. Tried) We then headed across the road to The Swan for dinner, which is part of the hotel. I grew up in and around Oxford and have been then several times before, but they’ve also just had a bit of a makeover, and I enjoyed the best Scotch egg of my life.

I headed to bed early and woke up naturally at 6am. I think the quiet of the countryside allowed me a really deep sleep, and I woke up slowly sipping on tea and then headed to an 8am yoga class which was a great way to wake up and gently stretch the body (no headstands were attempted). I then popped for a light breakfast before very happily heading to the spa for my 90 minute treatment.

It’ll come as no surprise that I’ve visited a fair few spas in my time, but I don’t recall ever being asked how I feel. Yes, I’ve been asked where my body hurts the most and what I’d like to get from a treatment, but not if I was seeking positivity, in need of a confident boost or – you guessed it – struggling to switch off. I love this aspect to our pre Aurelia Skincare treatment, which focuses on A Moment of Mindfullness, even if that’s just a few minutes to be present.

Luckily for me, I had 90 minutes of the Vitality treatment and decided to focus just on massage rather than a facial as my body felt heavy and out of sync. My therapist was really great at understanding how I was feeling, and immediately knew where my body would be aching and why – I felt in very safe hands, so much so that I was lulled into an almost meditational state during the treatment and when I came back to the present I felt totally refreshed, and as if this was exactly what my body had been craving this whole time.

Staying here really did remind me that taking time to focus inward is so important to our physical and mental health.

Thank you again to Thyme for the stay, I can’t wait to come back.