A Roman Legacy: A New Way to Take the Waters in Bath

This article was originally published in Great Golf Magazine


A Roman Legacy: A new way to take the waters in Bath

Thermal waters have bubbled in Bath throughout the centuries – from the earliest settlers right through to modern times. And these healing waters have made the town a mecca for those seeking its restorative powers. However, it finally received some luxury attention when the Gainsborough Bath Spa Hotel opened last September. Now there is a new way to take the waters in Bath.

A member of the Leading Hotels of the World, the Gainsborough Bath Spa married the concept of taking the waters with a luxury spa. It is the only hotel in the UK with private access to the thermal baths. While anyone can go to the Therme Bath Spa across the street, only registered guests are allowed in the Gainsborough Spa. And the difference between the two options is the difference between going to a tourist attraction and a holistic spa.

Centered in this UNESCO World Heritage city, the Gainsborough is a study in architectural adaptive reuse. The 99-room, five-star hotel is housed in two Grade II buildings that have previously served as a hospital and a design college. A third brand new building was seamlessly integrated into the Georgian Bath Limestone façade. Because the hotel is in the thermal spring area, engineers were able to install a borehole giving its Spa Village Bath exclusive access to the waters.

Named after Sir Thomas Gainsborough who painted portraits of Bath’s most fashionable residents and visitors in the 1760s, the Gainsborough blends classic bones with modern amenities and contemporary design. Stepping into the spacious lobby the most striking feature is a centre staircase that I become intimately familiar with in an attempt to work off all the food I eat during my stay.

Since this was a restoration, no two rooms or suites in the hotel are the same, but they all share a color palette of bluish grey, taupe and mustard. I am booked into a classic room, but for a truly unique experience book a bath spa room or bath spa suite. These rooms have bathtubs that offer direct access to the thermal waters. Taking the waters doesn’t get more exclusive than that! I got a glimpse of the Spa Village Bath as I walked to my room, thanks to the four-story glass atrium perched above the Bath House. With my spa diva appetite whetted, I’m anxious to get to the heart of the hotel and experience the waters for myself.

To read more about Bath click here to read the full article on Great Golf Magazine

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