I absolutely love the South West of England. Devon and Cornwall are so very beautiful. This is the home of the traditional English seaside holiday. It is home to the jaw-dropping South West Coastal Path, tiny little hedge trimmed roads, amazing seafood, and some fantastic spa hotels!
If you are looking to combine your visit to this beautiful area with some pampering here are 2 Fantastic Spa Hotels South West England!
Spa Hotels South West England – Thurlestone Hotel Devon
The lovely Thurlestone Hotel is in the heart of South Devon. It is very much the classic English holiday hotel. Whilst there are lots of modern elements, tradition still abounds with tea lounges and gardens galore.
The Thurlestone Hotel began as a pub – the still trading lovely Village Inn. In 1895, William and Margaret Grose purchased the Village Inn. They saw an opportunity to provide food and accommodation to golfers and their families. In 2019, the Village Inn and its expansion into the Thurlestone Hotel are still owned and run by the Grose family – such a wonderful story!
The family is very hands-on with the wonderful Mary often working on the front desk. I am sure that a huge part of the charm of this seaside hotel is the continued ownership by the Grose family.
85% of the guests at the Thurlestone Hotel are repeat visitors! I don’t think I have ever heard a figure that high for a hotel before! This is the type of hotel that families come to for years – and it then extends across generations. Between the golf course, beach, pool and spa there is something for everyone at the Thurlestone Hotel.
Thurlestone Hotel Rooms
Thurlestone offers a range of rooms and suites. I was lucky enough to have a room with a stunning sea view! My balcony was huge – big enough for 2 big comfortable seats. The room itself was very large – there was almost a mini lounge. The bed was big – king-sized – and very comfortable.
The bathroom at Thurlestone was freshly renovated and offered a separate bath and shower as well as two sinks. Temple Spa toiletries are on offer – as well as nice comfortable white bathrobes and slippers.
There was a huge range of tea and coffee in my room at the Thurlestone Hotel! I loved that the minibar includes local products like Salcombe Gin – and there was fresh local fudge on offer – which disappeared very quickly!
Thurlestone Hotel Spa and Swimming Pool
There is so much on offer when it comes to wellbeing at the Thurlestone Hotel! The outdoor pool is huge – and rather picturesque with cute mosaics of sea life on the bottom. There are also cute vintage style designs of old-style bathers around the pool behind the sun loungers.
This is a great place to just relax and take in the wonderful fresh devon seaside air. There is also a bar and restaurant seating area – so perfect for enjoying a drink and a snack by the pool.
The indoor spa is very sleek and modern but with a classic ocean liner theme. The indoor pool is a good size as is the hydrotherapy pool. The spa has 3 spa treatment rooms, a sauna, a steam room, a gym, and a laconium.
The spa facilities can be used by non-residents on a day spa basis and are perfect for spa breaks.
Thurlestone Hotel – The Village Inn
The Village Inn is where the Thurlestone Hotel started. Over the years the pub has expanded – and what was now the current owner’s grandmother’s bedroom and kitchen are now a lovely big modern room with big comfortable sofas.
This is the classic English pub – full of charm and character and of course a gastropub menu! There are roasts on a Sunday, fish, and chips on a Friday and everything else you could want from a pub in between!
Thurlestone Hotel – Restaurants
In addition to the Village Inn, the Thurlestone Hotel has the Trevilder Restaurant as well as a bar and tea lounge. There are loads of seating both inside and out to cater for the changes in the English weather!
We started our evening with a glass of local gin with tonic overlooking the sea. There is also a great range of wines available by the glass.
For me, the highlight was the amazing views from the Trevilder restaurant! Luckily this was incorporated into the design of the restaurant – which is all about windows from top to toe!
The menu, like everything else at the Thurlestone Hotel, sources local as much as possible and in the majority of cases. I enjoyed the local tiger prawns to begin. They were lovely but the highlight was an incredibly tasty devon steak wow!
Breakfast the next morning was also in the Trevilder restaurant. There was a huge buffet! Local juices, local yogurts (both of which were extremely good!) as well as an a la carte hot menu. I had a fantastic eggs benedict – outstanding local bacon and brilliant hollandaise!
Things to do near the Thurlestone Hotel
1. Eat Crabs in Salcombe
This super cute harbor town is also the home of outstanding crab in many forms! I enjoyed a fantastic lunch at the Crab Shed which is right on the harbour. The crab sandwich was outstanding! Doorstop sized soft fluffy brown bread with giant hunks of crab in the filling.
And as if that wasn’t enough – we also decided to try an interesting menu item. Chips combined with crab bisque with parmesan and a hint of chili. So fantastic!!!! These could have been a meal in themselves – there was even a hint of thai flavour.
2. Walk along the South West Coastal Path
Head out of the Thurlestone hotel and walk length. Pass the super cute local post office and Thurlestone church (which look just like they did in the old photos!) and take a right just past the church. Walk down the street that looks private but isn’t and within minutes you will hit the South West Coastal Path.
I LOVE the South West Coastal Path. It is insanely beautiful -,, particularly in the right weather. This section is a very easy walk – quite flat. The views are just draw-dropping – particularly looking over to Burgh Island. I only had time to walk about 20 odd minutes each way but it made me want to walk a lot more!
3. Visit Thurlestone Sands
Drive down some extremely small hedge-lined country lanes and you will hit Thurlestone Sands. This is a rather lovely beach and a small town. I must admit, I didn’t get time to do much more than jump out and take a few photos but I would recommend spending some more time exploring this cute beach and town.
Spa Hotels South West – Mullion Cove Hotel
Mullion Cove Hotel has the most stunning location! It is literally RIGHT on the cliff top standing high! I was lucky enough to have a room in the turret on the second floor. The room took advantage of its amazing views with 3 sided bay windows. I slept with the windows open and the sounds of crashing waves!
Mullion Cove Hotel Rooms
My room at Mullion Cove hotel was just lovely! It was a great size and decorated in blue and white. There was a big comfortable bed and not one but 4 bathrobes available for me in two different materials! One was a cotton waffle and the second a very soft fluffy towel type feel – I chose to use the fluffy towel type feel one! And there were also slippers.
The modern bathroom featured a wonderfully powerful shower. The room had a massive range of teas and coffee and also featured local brands – as well as delicious biscuits.
Mullion Cove also has apartments – which were used by the cast and crew of the TV show Poldark during their filming in the area.
Mullion Cove Hotel Spa and Pool
The Mullion Cove Hotel spa is only four months old and fantastic. The modern spa building houses treatment rooms, a Himalayan salt room, a sauna, a steam room, and a hydrotherapy pool.
There are “refreshment” showers in the spa building and outside – which seem to involve dumping a large pail of cold water onto yourself – I wasn’t brave enough to give it a try! Oh, there is also a gym.
The large outdoor pool is heated and open between February and March.
The highlight of the Mullion Cove spa for me was the outdoor jacuzzi. The jacuzzi has fantastic views over the coast. Best of all, there is a bar at the spa so we were able to enjoy local gin and tonics whilst sitting in the bubbles and looking out over the coast!
Mullion Cove Hotel Restaurant
We started our evening meal in the Mullion Cove Hotel bar. They have an extensive range of wines by the glass which is always good news! There was the most stunning sunset on the night I stayed at Mullion Cove Hotel. I spent a bit of time wandering in and out of the bar taking photos with different foregrounds! The colours were almost Asia like – deep pinks and yellows – wow!
There is both outdoor and indoor seating for the bar.
It is possible to eat in the bar which was very comfortable. We decided to have our dinner in the big dining room which has fantastic views. Dinner started with big plump local scallops with bacon and corn which were fantastic.
Then for main I chose the local plaice – a nice big portion – and crab risotto. The risotto featured deep-fried mussels and was delicious!
The meal finished with local cheeses – local brie and two local blues.
Breakfast in the morning is also served in the large dining room. There is a full buffet as well as a choice of hot breakfasts.
Things to do near Mullion Cove Hotel
1. Have fish and chips at the Lizard
The Lizard is the most south-westerly point of the British mainland and rather stunning. There is a small town called The Lizard. Whilst it is worth a visit, the best options for lunch are further down the road. Keep driving.
There is a car park on the left fo the Lizard lighthouse – but don’t park there – keep going! Park in the next car park on the right or be brave and see if there is any room at the final car park which is on the left.
Walk down from the car park and the first place you will hit is the fab Wavecrest restaurant. There is a restaurant a bit farther down that claims to be the most southerly cafe but we preferred the look and the views from Wavecrest.
The interior of Wavecrest is all blue and white and seaside and quite modern. There are wooden tables and seating outside with stunning views of the Lizard Peninsula. The fish and chips were outstanding! But the highlight was the Cornish afternoon tea. Wow! Super high scones which were so high and fluffy.
A serving of Cornish afternoon tea at the Wavecrest includes two giant scones which would be enough for a meal on their own. The jam and cream were also outstanding.
Do remember that when you are in Cornwall the way to enjoy your scone is to first spread it with jam and then add the cream. If you are in Devon then the cream should be spread first with the jam on top. Personally, I was raised to enjoy my scones Cornwall style so I find the whole Devon cream first thing rather odd. But maybe it is worth a try! Just not at Wavecrest!
2. Walk the South West Coastal Path
Wow. Absolutely jaw-dropping views. Jagged edges, sheltered coves, rock arches, stunning colours, the richest blues, and greens. This section of the South West Coastal Path is almost ridiculously beautiful. The walking is quite easy as well – not terribly steep. Super photogenic!
You might also enjoy reading some of my other posts on Fantastic Spas:
Ockenden Manor Spa is another fantastic spa in the United Kingdom as is beautiful Whatley Manor in the Cotswolds. There are some fantastic Luxury Spa Hotels in Yorkshire. Or perhaps read about some brilliant Spa Breaks Scotland or wonderful Monart Spa Ireland. If you’re planning to travel solo don’t miss my post on Solo Spa Breaks.
In Europe don’t miss some of the most famous options like Czech Spa town Karlovy Vary, Baden-Baden Spa options of the Blue Lagoon in Iceland. Or if you’re planning on travelling farther afield read about Kamalaya Thailand, Dwarika’s Dhulikhel Resort in the Himalayas, Daylesford Spa in Australia, spa and wine in the Napa Valley at Solage Spa and even African Spa options for pre or post-safari! I do love a spa!
How to get to South West England
The two main airports in this area are Exeter International for Devon and Newquay for Cornwall. Both have international flights although of course there is a more limited selection than Heathrow or Gatwick.
Driving Around South West England
Devon is 170 miles from London or roughly a four-hour drive. Cornwall is about 260 miles from London and roughly a five-hour drive. Renting a car is a terrific option as there is much to explore by car in these areas.
Top Tip: Rent your car from Heathrow or around Hammersmith/Shepherds Bush if you are coming from London. Cornwall and Devon are southwest of London so this starts your drive on the easiest side of London for a speedier journey.
If you are driving do watch out for the very small roads – particularly around the Thurlestone Hotel in Devon. The roads are barely one way in terms of width and the traffic is two ways. These tiny roads are lined by some rather tall hedges. They look lovely – but it makes it quite difficult to see who is coming the opposite way! There are lots of places to pull over and the locals are very understanding – but this is definitely for the calmest driver in your group!
The other option is to take the train to South West England. The closest station to Thurlestone Hotel is Totnes (17 miles away). For Mullion Cove Hotel it is Redruth station (18 miles away).
Who Paid for What in this Post
The lovely Grose family was kind enough to host me at both the Thurlestone Hotel and the Mullion Cove Hotel. In addition to my room, this included dinner, drinks, and breakfast. I covered the cost of the hire car and petrol and paid for my delicious lunches in Salcombe and the Lizard – both great investments!
Also, this post contains affiliate links. That means that if you click through on some of the links in it and make a purchase I will receive a small commission. Just wanted to make sure that you knew.
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