The Bishop’s Palace and Gardens sits in the heart of the Medieval city of Wells
Steeped in history, The Bishop's Palace and Gardens sits at the heart...
The four-star Aztec Hotel & Spa sits in the ideal location for a city break whether you’re after some pre-wedding pampering with your bride tribe or some mini-moon rest and relaxation. Conveniently nestled just off the motorway in Almondsbury, it lies within easy reach of Bristol and Bath and offers great access to all the sights and delights. However, if you prefer to just get away from it all and enjoy being cocooned in contemporary luxury, as I did, Aztec offers the ultimate experience.
After a three hour drive the bestie and I were well and truly ready to hit the spa! So, once we’d benefited from our early check in and been welcomed by the friendly staff we said a quick “hello” to our lovely twin room and grabbed our fluffy hotel robes and slippers to make our way down. This was an exciting prospect given it was awarded Best Boutique Spa by The Good Spa Guide earlier in 2022. I was booked in for a massage, so we were shown to the new Relax Lounge to await my therapist. Here, we found an amazingly tranquil haven complete with refreshments, armchairs and even loungers. We both made a beeline for the latter and that’s where I left my bestie, Natalie, literally living her best life when I was collected for my treatment.
Along with French skincare brand Caudalie, TempleSpa offers a professional spa menu of body treatments. It’s one of my favourite brands and its products are known for offering the perfect blend of British sophistication and Mediterranean soul. One such treatment is My Kinda Massage, perfect for all you nearlyweds out there needing to unwind from the stress of wedding planning. There’s a 25-minute back or shoulder and scalp version or a 55-minute full body massage on offer. Here, you get to choose from three scents: Drift Away with frankincense, lavender and patchouli; In Good Spirits with ginger, lemon and bergamot; and Work It Out with juniper, lavender and cypress.
TIME FOR A DIP
Having retrieved an uber-chilled Natalie from the Relax Lounge, we headed for the pool, which is what the hotel likes to call, “A proper size.” This is a fair description as often spa pools are a slightly odd shape that prevents you swimming lengths. Here though you can, and it’s divided down the middle so those who wish can swim and others can bob around, which was our preferred way to enjoy a dip. There were even foam noodles on hand for those less confident in the water.
The Jacuzzi proved the place to be for many visitors, and you didn’t have to wait long for the bubble cycle to come round, which often isn’t the case elsewhere, leaving you to wonder if it’s even working! Here the bubbles were going longer than they weren’t – heaven!
We also thoroughly enjoyed using the other facilities such as the steam room with amazing benefits of menthol, and the sauna. Reclining on the poolside loungers, we became so relaxed that we stopped talking long enough to completely zone out – a rarity.
WINE AND DINE
Having torn ourselves away from the spa just in time for dinner, we headed into The Curious Kitchen, which has recently been awarded Best Luxury Hotel Restaurant in the World Luxury Restaurant Awards 2022. It was easy to see why.
There’s a brilliantly wide range of dishes to chose from and I ordered from A Taste Of The Season menu. I opted for pigeon, roasted beetroot, chicory, pickled blackberry and salted sumac granola for starter. This was followed by flat iron steak, Cornish sea salted fries, and Café de Paris butter; while the Black Forrest verrine for dessert was divine. I should also mention Natalie’s chocolate bread and butter pudding, which was quite the showstopper when it arrived!
I was also mightily impressed with the incredible range available at breakfast, inspired by the hotel group Daniel Thwaites’ Northern roots. Everything was made fresh to order even the continental options, which added to the luxurious experience.
So, good was the food throughout our stay that we treated to ourselves to an afternoon tea before we hit the road again the following day, resolved to be back.
To find out more, visit www.aztechotelbristol.co.uk