Hip country retreat for stressed urbanites
Cowley Manor is for those who love their country with plenty of urban pizzazz. Walk into a world of cowhide chairs, glossy bathrooms and sleek townie technics – Cotswolds with a metropolitan makeover.
- The country house experience with a distinctly urban edge.
- A fabulous spa with two pools.
- Over 50 acres of gorgeous grounds.
Hit the spot
Five miles from Cheltenham.
The C-Side Spa has two heated pools (indoor and outdoor) complete with loungers for sunning. There's also a gym for working out. You'll find wellies for long country walks and a DVD library, plus a helipad for arrivals in style.
Good to know
Not the place for chintz lovers.
Minimum StayTwo nights a weekends
ParkingThere is plenty of free guest parking.
AirportBristol – 60 minutes; or London Heathrow – 80 minutes. Cowley Manor also has a helipad.
TrainCheltenham Spa station – 25 minutes.
PetsWelcome in two dog friendly rooms, for GBP 25 a night.
ChildrenWelcome. There’s a playroom (unsupervised) and babysitting service, plus a special kid’s menu.
LocationCowley, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL53 9NL, United Kingdom
Spacious rooms have vibrant colours, custom-made contemporary furniture, iPod docks, plasma TV, a CD and DVD player, plus a well stocked minibar.
Rooms are named from Good to Best to suit most budgets. The Best room really is the best – a four-poster bed, double bath and a huge private terrace with views. We also loved the duplex rooms in the stable block, and the balconied Exceptional rooms.
Eat & Drink
Fusing traditional style with contemporary cool, Cowley Manor's oak panelled restaurant is the epitome of stately chic – just the setting for culinary treats with a decidedly British slant. Critically acclaimed chef and restaurateur (of The Ivy and Le Caprice fame) Mark Hix has joined forces with Cowley's head chef Robin Smith to create the ultimate British menus.
Dishes aim to celebrate the best of the season's produce, with winners such as fried duck egg with brown shrimps and samphire, beef flank and oyster pie, whole Cornish John Dory and Perry jelly with elderflower icecream.
Full English breakfast is served until 11am.
Available 24 hours a day.
See & Do
Hang out poolside or in the spa, stroll through the 55 acres of grounds (just borrow a pair of wellington boots) or soak up the views on the suntrap terrace. Cheltenham has plenty of cafes and shops to explore, and you can escape the bustle in leafy Montpellier Gardens.
Have a wander through the trees of Westonbirt Arboretum (magical in autumn, or in winter with the Christmas lights), or walk through the rolling grounds of Dyrham Park.
De-stress, de-tox and relax in Cowley Manor’s award-winning C-Side spa, where holistic treatments range from massages and wraps to facials using Cowley’s own range of aromatherapy products. Try the utterly spoiling Cloud 9 signature treatment – aromatherapy, massage, reflexology and Qi energy balancing that’s designed to leave you blissed out.
Splash and swim in the outdoor and indoor pools, or work up a sweat in the sauna, steam room and gym.
The glitterati of literati pitch up in force for the Cheltenham Literature festival.
November – March
Back a winner at the Cheltenham races. – just be sure to book months ahead for the Festival and Gold Cup week in March.
See the stars take to the stage at the Cheltenham Jazz Festival.