Here’s Why You Should Escape The City And Head Straight For This Idyllic Countryside Spa. Leanne Kelsall Reviews Moddershall Oaks Country Spa Retreat
As a Londoner, a spa date is a welcome escape from the nuisances of busy city life. But there is more gadgets than greenery in the glitzy urban spas available on my doorstep. For real tranquillity, only the countryside will do.
So naturally, I jumped at the chance to review Moddershall Oaks Country Spa in Staffordshire, nestled among 72 acres of woodland.
This is a spa I’ve heard so much about. I grew up in Staffordshire, and Moddershall Oaks was a regular retreat for my mum and her friends. Years later and images of the spa’s plush outdoor pool posted by friends make a regular appearance on my social feeds.
Desperate to unwind and experience the spa that everyone was talking about, I hopped on the fast train and headed for a weekend of R&R.
An inspiring story
Moddershall Oaks Spa is located in the picturesque Staffordshire countryside. There’s a charming story behind the success Moddershall enjoys today – now in its 15th year. A converted farmhouse, the spa began as small beauty business owned by passionate pamperers and entrepreneurs Phillip and Delia Holland. Years later their daughter Penny would become Moddershall’s director.
The pair dreamed of owning their own spa and did just that. After years of renovations, worth millions of pounds, the team of eight became 85 and the couple added new facilities, including a lakeside restaurant and several luxury suites. Today, family-run Moddershall remains one of the UK’s most popular countryside-set spas. Proof that real passion pays off.
Modern Moddershall is filled with all the spa tech you need to pamper yourself from head to toe. Inside, you can take a seat in the large jacuzzi with individual hydrotherapy sections. Floor-to-ceiling windows look out onto the beautiful courtyard, letting in the sun’s rays. You can choose to admire the view from a heated marble lounger (like my guest and I) or, take a plunge in the pool for a lap or two.
The heated outdoor vitality pool is the kind of place you could spend all day (I should know – I did just that), with friendly bar staff ready to take your order of food or drinks from the Deli. With everything taken care of, you’re free to soak up the countryside views with a glass of Laurent Perrier in hand. An open log fire overlooks the pool, which is lined by chic sofas and loungers for sunbathing. There’s also a steam room, sauna, fluffy robes and flip-flops all ready for you to enjoy.
No spa trip is complete without a treatment and Moddershall Oaks has a huge range of high-tech and specialised Elemis treatments for men and women. My guest and I enjoyed an Elemis Customized Facial. After just 25 minutes in a luxury treatment room, I felt refreshed, rejuvenated and ready to take on the day.
When you’re not soaking up the spa’s serenity, you can borrow on a bike or set off by foot to explore the stunning lake and woodland trails.
Moddershall Oaks houses 10 luxury suites adjacent to the spa. Myself and my guest shared a deluxe twin room, which included its own decking area and access to the private hot tub.
Our suite had all the mod cons a traveller could need, including full Sky on an enormous flat screen TV, a docking system, under floor heating, a large whirlpool bath and indulgent Elemis products in the bathroom. Our room was incredibly cosy, with warm-coloured fabrics, glowing lanterns and gold pillows.
After a peaceful night’s sleep, we used the spa’s high-tech gym and then headed for breakfast which was included with our room. Breakfast is served in the same stunning location as the restaurant (I’ll come onto that later) and offers guests the chance to make their own breakfast using whichever ingredients they prefer on the menu. You can choose from homemade sausages, eggs how you like them, heritage tomatoes, potato cakes and more. Our portions were hearty and we could also use the continental buffet of pastries, cereals, pressed juices and homemade jams.
I was blown away by the evening meal at Moddershall Oaks, which was as good as – better even – than some of the fine-dining restaurants I’ve visited in London. The award-winning Lakeside Restaurant overlooks the surrounding forest and lake. The dishes are creative and celebrate the broad range of organic ingredients available in Staffordshire.
To start, my guest and I ordered the ‘Heritage Tomatoes’ (£7.95) with creamy wasabi mascarpone. The dish included homemade sourdough bruschetta and a generous scattering of toasted pine nuts.
When it came to the mains, I chose the ‘Beef’ (£18.95) which included a sirloin steak and a mouthwatering mini brisket pie. The pastry was delightfully crumbly and the slow-cooked chunks of beef were soft and succulent. The maple-glazed ‘Venison’ (£18.95) caught my guest’s eye, which came with a caramelised date yoghurt, thick-cut bacon and sweet potato pancakes. Delicious.
Open for breakfast, lunch, dinner and afternoon tea, the Lakeside Restaurant, with its serene setting, is the perfect place to end a weekend of complete bliss.
Moddershall Oaks – Where and How
Moddershall Oaks Country Spa Retreat is located in Moddershall, near Stone, Staffordshire, ST15 8WF, United Kingdom. For more information or to make a booking, visit www.moddershalloaks.com, call 01782 399000 or email [email protected]