Bath has been a tourist destination for centuries, but it has come into its own in recent years as staycations have surged - mostly thanks to its history, walkability and - let's face it - huge array of bars, shops and restuarants. Oh and a little show called Bridgerton, which hit Netflix last December, was shot in Bath meaning that fans could come and relive the Regency life that they fell in love with once they'd binged it.
Here are Grazia's picks for where to stay for the weekend:
Best Boutique Hotel: The Bird
Since it reopened in 2018 as The Bird, Bath this unique 31 room hotel has become a jewel in the city’s crown thanks to its stylish design and ideal setting. Just a stone’s throw from Bath’s Recreation Ground and central hot spots such as The Abbey and the Roman Baths, The Bird is the perfect base for a minibreak - somewhere to come and crash in between outings or stash your shopping bags before you head back out on another mission. Its location on Pulteney Road lands you slap bang in the middle of Regency Bath territory, with Great Pulteney Street on one side and the Holborne Museum on the other (which you may recognise as the setting of the Duke of Hasting’s home in Bridgerton!). Whilst Bath has many options when it comes to restaurants - both one offs and chains - don’t sleep on The Bird’s in house restaurant Plate. It boasts only seasonal, locally sourced produce in a beautiful environment - with outdoor dining globes which are perfect for winter evenings. The whole place is Instagram friendly, stylishly devised and well catered - it’s no surprise it’s become one of Bath’s most popular minibreak locations.
Visit https://www.thebirdbath.co.uk for more booking information
Best Country Hotel: Homewood
Only around 15 minutes from Bath city centre, Homewood is a country escape with city benefits. That the word ‘home’ lies in this hotel’s name feels fitting, with its country casual furnishings and beautiful kitchen gardens to wander, you can feel like you’ve arrived at your very own country pile for the weekend. If you want your weekend to be a chance to switch off, Homewood is the choice for you: with views that span the countryside for miles, a heated outdoor pool, hydrotherapy pool, sauna, steam room, and holistic treatments on offer at the inhouse spa, if you don’t want to leave and explore Bath you don’t have to. Lie back and let relaxation take over. Dine at the mediterranean style Olio Restaurant, which spreads out onto the outdoor terrace, and serves wholesome straight forward plates of steak, branzino or lamb cutlets. Don’t miss the Sunday roast.
Visit https://www.homewoodbath.co.uk for more booking information
Best Spa Hotel: The Gainsborough
If you are on the hunt for total, blissful relaxation and luxuriation, you’ll find it at The Gainsborough Bath Spa. The five star hotel lies in the heart of Bath, amongst some of its most iconic buildings - including the Abbey and the Roman Baths (which have earned its credentials as a World Heritage Site). Originally built in the 1800s, The Gainsborough Bath Spa occupies two Grade II Listed buildings and is named after the artist, Sir Thomas Gainsborough. Come for the history, and the luxurious rooms, but stay as long as you can for the hotel’s Spa Village - the only hotel in the city to feature its famous natural thermal, mineral-rich waters in its pools (something which drew the crowds to Bath in their droves during the Georgian era). We call it swimming, the Georgians called it ‘taking the waters’, and you can do just this in the village’s series of thermal pools which are thought to have healing properties for your skin and muscles. Choose from a variety of massages, body treatments at facials to lull you into supreme relaxation - for mums to be there are also bespoke prenatal packages which promote wellbeing. In one word: dreamy.
Visit https://www.thegainsboroughbathspa.co.uk for more booking information
Best Celeb Spotter: Royal Crescent
Even if you’ve never visited Bath, chances are you’ve seen its most famous structure before (it’s one of the most popular filming locations in the city, featuring in Bridgerton, Pursuit of Love and The Duchess, starring Keira Knightly, to name just a few). Unsurprisingly it’s a go-to for A-list names who flock to Bath, whether they’re filming or relaxing, thanks to its discreet entrance amongst the 30 terraced houses which make up the crescent, which sits upon its huge private lawn and overlooks Bath’s biggest park: Victoria Park. Thanks to its award-winning restaurant and spa, the Royal Crescent Hotel has seen the likes of Beyonce and Jay Z, Johnny Depp and the Rolling Stones all walk through its doors.
Visit https://www.royalcrescent.co.uk for more booking information