Gleneagles

The lowdown

Most people will have at least heard of Gleneagles – the iconic hotel, the baronial estate, the world class golf courses… But it’s hard to define exactly what it is that makes staying at ‘the glorious playground’ such a unique treat. Gleneagles oozes luxury, but it’s not a flashy, showy luxury, it’s more of an understated excellence that permeates throughout everything and everyone. Décor is understated, glasses are gleaming and customer service appears to be an almost telepathic art form. Even the falcons look particularly well preened. From to the junior bath robes and bath products, to the in-house mending service, every little thing has been thought of, and taken care of, to ensure your experience is genuinely glorious.

Spavellous for

Couples, golfers, spa with a friend, solo spa goers, families, retreat-seekers, a relaxing retreat, staycation, country types, international guests, railway enthusiasts.

Spa info

Gleneagles spa, The Club, has a new look for 2022. The designers have created a natural, more mindful space, in pastel pinks and eau de nil, with trailing botanicals. The new spa boasts a light-filled relaxation courtyard and spa café offering healthy lite-bites and refreshments.

The Swim and Gym area is open to hotel and non-resident day spa guests, offering two good-sized pools – one for lengths, one for splashing with the kids – plus an outdoor thermal pool, state-of-the-art gym and thermal suite with sauna, steam room, vitality pool and ‘Alpine onsen’.

But that’s just half the story. A dainty skip away is the Bob & Cloche beauty lodge. With a decadent nail bar, hair salon, treatment rooms and elegant relaxation areas, this art deco decked-out former gate lodge beautifully complements the already fabulous Gleneagles spa. Characteristically classy, Bob & Cloche gives off glamorous other-era vibes that heighten the sense of indulgent escapism and reminds you why you chose Gleneagles.

Treatment highlights

The treatment menu has been deliberately pared down, and now features treatments using Gleneagles’s own new botanical product range, alongside specialist treatments from inflammation-warrior Dr. Barbara Sturm and natural skincare expert Tata Harper. And there are Safe Hands for Cancer trained therapists available too. The spa has a holistic ethos and treatments seamlessly blend ancient and modern wellness approaches to deliver bespoke multi-sensory journeys.

A great example is the new Balancing and Grounding Facial, which incorporates the sound of singing bowls into a more classic facial treatment together with breathwork and pressure point massage, simultaneously soothing skin and soul.

Another crowd-pleaser for anyone looking for a restorative, balancing treatment is the Gleneagles signature treatment The Long Exhale. A full body treatment incorporating facial and scalp massage plus a reviving foot treatment that leaves you ‘radiant with life-force’. Though, at £245 for 120 minutes, we suspect it might have been named after the reaction to seeing your bank balance after paying for this indulgent treatment.

Wellness experts are also on hand to deliver focussed retreats, such as the nature-connecting Wild Wellness break and the 3-day gut health retreat led by model-turned-nutritionist Rosemary Ferguson. It’s a serious financial, as well as emotional, investment but, with the ever-growing belief in health being the new wealth, they’re likely to be booked up quicker than you can say lactobacillus-enriched antioxidant smoothie.

rooms

Bedrooms are elegant and comfortable with spacious options to accommodate family groups if needed and add-ons of balconies, terraces, and rugged views. Bathrooms are grand and have decadent touches like roll top baths, dual marble washbasins and underfloor heating. And they’re decked out with all the nice extras you’d imagine.

wining & dining

There are an impressive ten dining and bar choices, with options ranging from bar snacks to Michelin-starred gourmet delights.

The Strathearn offers fine dining in all senses – from the grand décor, to the quality of ingredients used to create Franco-fabulous dishes, using local Scottish produce where possible. Breakfast is also served in The Strathearn and is substantial enough to fuel you through your morning’s choice of treatments and pursuits. It also serves a cracking cocktail.

Andrew Fairlie has two Michelin stars and attracts a discerning international crowd. Cosy and refined, it offers a French-inspired menu and comprehensive wine list.

The Dormy’s a laid-back restaurant with a clubhouse vibe, overlooking the golf course. Offering a range of tandoor-cooked curries, stone baked pizzas and meat from the grill. A good bet if you’re feeling ravenous after a day on a course or a horse.

The Garden Cafe This unfussy cafe with an outside-in feel is the go-to place for tea and cake, pastries or a lighter lunch. The place to go for a spontaneous salad, sandwich, bowl of steaming pasta or a cheeky burger.

The American Bar. With a strong 1920s vibe the glamourous American Bar is the place to be transported to another era with its fine champagne, cocktails and caviar.

The Birnam Brasserie. The Birnam brings the fun and food of Europe’s finest brasseries and trattorias to the foot of the Highlands, offering fresh, modern dining in a bright, plant-filled space.

The Century Bar. Sink in to one of the bar’s plush red velvet sofas and peruse the menu while you contemplate the 300+(!) whisky list. A good choice if you’re looking for a more substantial lunch. Also offers outside dining.

Auchterarder 70. A clubhouse classic, this is the place to go for a post-round steak or pizza, craft beer or gin of choice. Overlooking the course, it’s popular with guests and locals alike.

The Garden Bar. A recent addition at Geleneagles, as the name suggests The Garden Bar offers al fresco dining and drinks.

The Blue Bar. Very much a whisky and cigar kind of place, outside The Dormy, with blankets and a roaring fire to keep things cosy.

why so spavellous?

The whole Gleneagles experience offers next-level luxury, activities and seamless service and just has that wow factor. Plus it’s the only UK spa hotel we know with its own train station.

spavellous tips

Book a balcony or terrace room in the newer Braid House wing if you want to be near the spa. Also good for early risers looking to catch a sunrise over the hills.

It’s tempting to just flit from bar to spa to restaurant, but you won’t regret making time to try out some of the other activities as well as the spa, or at least have a good explore of ‘the playground’.

The leisure pool area’s a great indoor option for families when the weather’s a little bit too Scottish, and there’s quality childcare available, with in-room options and a crèche with its own little treehouse.

spa-goers say

‘I had a thoroughly fabulous day at the spa while my husband was in golfers’ paradise.’

‘The relaxation I had from my massage lasted all the way through the weekend as it’s such a special place and we were so well looked after’

‘Visiting Bob & Cloche beauty rooms was a real treat’

‘We left feeling relaxed, energised and with our souls restored’

‘Service was amazing – and soo personalised – the waiter remembered my dietary requirements and whisky preference from the previous evening!’

‘It was a very expensive weekend, but a very awesome one too, so it was worth every penny!’

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Gleneagles Hotel, Auchterarder, Perthshire, Scotland PH3 1NF

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PH3 1NF
Photo credit: Gleneagles
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