Chris Hudson heads to the fringes of the North York Moors for a relaxing getaway by candlelight
Nestled in the charming market town of Helmsley in North Yorkshire, the Feversham Arms Hotel & Verbena Spa is ideally located to explore the rolling dales and moors of the region. At just under an hour from York and Leeds, it really is the perfect luxury hideaway, designed for guests to retreat from the world, and relax and indulge. A perfect blend of traditional meets contemporary, the old coaching inn has been tastefully extended to incorporate a tranquil area housing a swimming pool and sundeck, a state-of-the-art spa facility, while the modern Weathervane restaurant sits below a stunning glass roof.
The Verbena Spa feels bigger than the hotel itself; the sprawling relaxation lounge is full of sofas you can sink into and there are large windows looking out over the pool garden. Treatment rooms line the far wall, and a doorway through to the heat experience reveals an aromatherapy room, salt inhalation chamber, saunarium, monsoon shower and foot spas. From there, it’s just a short walk back outside to a smartly secluded whirlpool bath and outdoor heated pool.
As part of the Spa by Candlelight package, I opted for a full-body massage with particular attention to my stressed shoulders. My therapist did a great job of finding and gently ironing out those troublesome knots. The treatment menu is extensive and I really could have tried a whole host of enticing treatments, from scrubs and wraps right through to male-specific facials and customised massages. After the treatment, I returned to the relaxation room to be greeted by a dusky evening outside and a plethora of candles that further relaxed me.
The hotel has 33 individually designed rooms and suites, the pick of the bunch being the delightful luxury poolside suites, with direct access down to the pool garden and spa. Individual bathrooms, sitting rooms and bedrooms make you feel like you’re in a home from home rather than a hotel room, made even more special by the cosy wood-burning stove crackling away in the corner.
The Weathervane serves seasonal local produce and food foraged from the nearby Moors, taking the traditions of the local area and giving them a contemporary spin. It’s a tough choice between either the a la carte or the six-course taster menu, but I’d recommend the sirloin steak — cooked to perfection. The next morning, the full Yorkshire breakfast and cold buffet set me up for the day as I took to the town to explore, before heading off into the Moors to really appreciate the stunning beauty of North Yorkshire.
A stylish yet traditional luxury hideaway, ideally located to explore the surrounding countryside.
The Spa by Candlelight package is available every Thursday between 5-9pm, and includes full access to the facilities and treatments for £85 per person. Rooms start from £180 a night while a six-course taster menu is £70 per person.
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