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There’s no doubt that Covid-19 has had a massive impact on all our lives, and while the pandemic is still around, there are definitely signs that life is returning to normal. One welcome sign is the resumption of live events. Across the country, all kinds of music, arts and sports events have already been confirmed for 2022, and there are likely to be plenty more on the way!
In this guide, we look at some of the biggest events on the calendar and highlight the perfect spa hotels in the area. So, you can start planning exciting UK breaks away with your partner and friends that combine fantastic live entertainment with some much-needed spa relaxation.
See in the New Year in style in Edinburgh. The Hogmanay festivities are a four-day festival of parties, performances and processions, culminating in spectacular fireworks against the backdrop of beautiful Edinburgh Castle. Wrap up warm and enjoy the fun! If you can’t make this year’s festivities, why not plan a visit for Hogmanay 2022/3? You may even prefer to visit for Burns Night, which is celebrated across Scotland. The night itself is 25 January, but there are events going on in the days before and after, too.
Boasting a central Old Town location, on the edge of Holyrood Park and close to Edinburgh Castle, Macdonald Holyrood Hotel is the perfect choice for anytime weekend breaks. It is especially good for enjoying all the Hogmanay and Burn’s Night entertainment in Scotland’s capital. Relax in the comfortable guest rooms, relax over a drink and a meal in the onsite bar and restaurant, and escape to the calming spa for some downtime. The facilities include a swimming pool, sauna, relaxation suites and a gym. Book now.
Enjoy a festival of horseracing during this popular annual event that includes 28 races across four days, culminating in the Gold Cup, which is considered second only to the Grand National (more on that below!). The course enjoys a lovely setting in the Cotswold Hills, while the nearby town of Cheltenham fully embraces all the excitement of the world renowned festival. Cheltenham Racecourse hosts racing, big-name concerts and other events all year round, so there’s always something to enjoy, whether or not you’re a horseracing fan.
Located just outside the town and less than 15 minutes by road from the racecourse, the DoubleTree by Hilton Cheltenham is a wonderful retreat for a UK break away and a superb choice for visiting the Cheltenham Festival. Enjoying a peaceful setting on the edge of Lilley Brook Golf Course, the hotel features comfortable bedrooms, a lovely restaurant overlooking Lilley Brook Lake, and a luxurious spa. Facilities include indoor heated swimming pools, a sauna, steam rooms, a solarium and a modern fitness suite. Book now.
Support the rowing teams of Oxford and Cambridge universities as they continue their long-standing rivalry over four miles of the River Thames. Returning to The Championship Course, which extends between Putney and Mortlake, the Boat Race is a historic fixture on England’s sporting calendar, dating back to 1829 (Oxford won that one!). There are, of course, two races, with the men’s and women’s crews battling it out on race day. Join the crowds along the riverbank to cheer them all on!
An extra special event calls for an extra special hotel, and The May Fair, A Radisson Collection Hotel certainly fits the bill. Located in an upmarket area of London, close to Hyde Park, the hotel offers elegant accommodation and plenty of spa luxury. The facilities include a herbal sauna, aromatic steam room and a candlelit relaxation room. The hotel is steps away from Green Park Underground station, from where you can easily reach Putney Bridge and Barnes Bridge stations near the Boat Race route. Book now.
For another iconic horseracing meeting, head to Aintree. Even non-racing fans often have a little flutter on the Grand National, the country’s most famous and prestigious horserace, which dates back to 1839. If you’ve watched it on television, why not plan a weekend break away to enjoy it live? While the main race is held on 9 April, the event spans three days, with plenty of other racing and entertainment to enjoy. The racecourse is conveniently close to Aintree station, about five miles north of Liverpool.
Just 15 minutes by road from Aintree Racecourse, The Spa @ Suites Hotel is a great base for your Grand National weekend away. As the name suggests, the hotel offers all-suite accommodation, so you have plenty of space in which to relax. The hotel features the welcoming Handley’s Brasserie and Bollinger Bar, while the pampering spa offers Elemis treatments, a thermal suite and a Rasul mud chamber. There is also an onsite swimming pool and gym. Book now.
Come and celebrate all things operatic at the wonderful Glyndebourne Festival held in glorious East Sussex. Look forward to productions of classic operas, including Puccini’s La bohème and Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro, plus some rarer treats. If you love opera, a visit to Glyndebourne is a must, while newcomers will find the festival a fantastic introduction to this rich musical genre. Pack a picnic and come and enjoy the fun!
Located about 15 minutes by road from Glyndebourne and within easy reach of central London, the East Sussex National Hotel makes a superb base for your trip or an excellent choice for some spa luxury during your break away. Enjoy the relaxed ambience of this fine country hotel, which boasts a fantastic onsite golf course, in addition to comfortable accommodation and great dining options. At the serene spa, you can look forward to luxurious ESPA treatments and a thermal suite with an aromatherapy room and salt vapour room. Book now.
Head to London for the world's greatest flower show, which features stunning displays and beautiful themed gardens. The exhibition is open all day over the five days, with a special evening opening on 27 May, when you can enjoy live music, food, talks and demonstrations. Located close to the Thames in upmarket Chelsea, a short break to visit the RHS Chelsea Flower Show makes for a refined break away for couples and friends, or for some quality time with mum.
Complement your relaxed visit to the RHS Chelsea Flower Show with some spa pampering at The Chelsea Health Club and Spa. The luxury Antara Spa is a couple of miles from Royal Hospital Chelsea. Hop on the District Line at Fulham Broadway to Sloane Square or take a bus or taxi. The spa features several luxurious treatment rooms, as well as a couples’ room, while the facilities include a swimming pool, plunge pool, Jacuzzi and sauna. Book now.
One of the most popular sporting events of the year, Wimbledon fortnight always produces some memorable moments. From underdogs pulling off unlikely wins to seeing some of the big names in tennis bidding for Grand Slam glory, Wimbledon has a rich history and an iconic vibe. And you can be part of it, whether you book seats for Centre Court or opt for a ground pass. So, enjoy some strawberries and cream, cheer on your favourite players, and be thankful for the roofs when the British weather brings rain!
Add a full or half-day of spa luxury to your Wimbledon break away at the Imagine Health and Spa at the Holiday Inn. Located in the heart of Kensington, the hotel enjoys a prime position, with great transport links to destinations across the city. You can easily reach Wimbledon Park Tube station on the District Line from Kensington High Street station. The smart spa hotel offers pampering treatments and facilities including a swimming pool, whirlpool, sauna and gymnasium. Book now.
More sporting excitement awaits at the Formula 1 British Grand Prix. Even if you’re not a motorsport fan, Silverstone has something to enjoy across the race weekend, with a festival of music, food and interactive events. For F1 afficionados, there is a fanzone, where you can get up close to the action and a museum that features racing cars from across the decades. For everyone, the three-day event is a chance to enjoy the atmosphere and outdoor entertainment ahead of the big race on Sunday.
Around three miles from Silverstone, Whittlebury Hall Hotel Spa is a great base for enjoying the fun at Silverstone. Set amid lovely countryside, the luxury spa hotel provides a wonderfully relaxing ambience that’s a perfect contrast to the F1 excitement. It’s also an ideal choice if you or your travelling companion would prefer to sit out the racing! The hotel features some fab themed entertainment nights, as well as a serene spa with a lovely swimming pool and a thermal suite. Book now.
Head to Glasgow for more great live music at the TRNSMT Festival. With confirmed acts including Paolo Nutini, The Strokes and Wolf Alice, the weekend promises to be one to remember. Held at Glasgow Green, a couple of miles south of the city, the event is easy to get to. However, be aware that (at the time of writing) all attendees will be required to show proof of a negative Covid-19 test to gain entry to the festival. We would recommend checking this out and booking early, as the event is popular and sure to sell out fast.
Located a few miles from Glasgow Green and within easy reach of some lovely countryside, the DoubleTree by Hilton Strathclyde offers a fine retreat from the buzz of the music festival, whether you opt for a spa day or overnight stay. Combine your weekend at TRNSMT with some relaxed downtime at this modern spa hotel, which features casual onsite dining and well-appointed guestrooms. Adjourn to the welcoming spa to enjoy a pampering treatment. The facilities include saunas, steam rooms, and spa pools. Book now.
If you’re a fan of the arts, head to Edinburgh next summer to celebrate the 75th Festival Fringe. Performers from across the world take to the city’s streets and stages to present theatre, music, comedy and cabaret. The events run in parallel to the Edinburgh International Festival (6 to 28 August), which features its own eclectic programme of music, theatre, opera and dance that take place across the city’s major theatres, concert halls and performance spaces.
Enjoy a relaxed spa day in the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town. Located right on the famed Royal Mile, the Radisson Blu Hotel offers a calming sanctuary amid all the revelry of the arts festivals. The hotel features a superb onsite bar and restaurant, while the spa offers luxurious Elemis treatments and a range of facilities including a swimming pool, sauna, steam room and gym, all just steps away from everything the city and its festivals have to offer. Book now.
One of the most popular of the summer music festivals, the Leeds Reading Festival is back on the calendar, after being called off in 2020. In 2022, it looks set to host a programme of big-name performers (the line-up has yet to be confirmed). Running over the same weekend, the festivals offer a diverse mix of music across the stages, with 2021’s festivals featuring Liam Gallagher, Biffy Clyro and Wolf Alice, among many others. The festival site is a 15 to 20 minute walk from the town’s train station, so getting there from across the UK is a cinch.
The Crowne Plaza Reading East is a great choice for adding some spa downtime to your festival weekend away. The modern hotel is a short walk from Winnersh Triangle, which has direct trains to Reading station. Enjoy comfortable accommodation, fine dining at the 2 AA rosette restaurant and a stylish lounge bar. If spa luxury and relaxation are what you need after all that festival fun, you can look forward to pampering treatments and facilities that include a swimming pool, sauna and gym. Book now.
If you can’t make it to Reading, how about Leeds instead? The Leeds part of the Leeds Reading Festival promises to be just as much fun. The event is held in Bramham Park, which is outside the city, close to the town of Wetherby. As with Reading, at the time of writing, the line-up had yet to be confirmed but both festivals are renowned for attracting big-name performers. We recommend getting in early to avoid disappointment, as tickets for the weekend across both festivals are bound to sell out fast!
Less than 10 miles from Bramham Park, The Bridge Hotel and Courtyard Spa is a great addition to, or a base for, your trip to the Leeds Festival. The former 17th-century coaching inn has been transformed into a charming country hotel and relaxing spa that offers the perfect respite to a high energy weekend of outdoor live music. You can look forward to a warm welcome and facilities that include an outdoor hot tub, applewood sauna, Nordic barrel sauna and eucalyptus crystal steam room. Book now.
While the focus of the BBC Proms tends to be on the Royal Albert Hall (see below!), there are events taking place across the country. One of the more popular is the Park Proms, which is held at the magnificent Broadlands Estate in Romsey. You can enjoy the world-renowned Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra, as well as performers including James Morrison and Pixie Lott. Tuck into locally-sourced food and sip on a glass of Pimm’s, while listening to fine music, all in the wonderful Hampshire countryside.
Turn a visit to the Park Proms into an extra special spa weekend away at the Rena Spa at Leonardo Royal Southampton Grand Harbour. Around four miles from the Broadlands Estate, the hotel certainly lives up to its name, enjoying a prime waterfront position close to the centre of Southampton. Enjoy comfortable accommodation, relax over a meal or a drink at the Marco Pierre White Steakhouse, Bar & Grill, and unwind in the superb spa. The facilities include a swimming pool, Jacuzzi and gym. Book now.
Vibrant Notting Hill in West London is the place to be for the August bank holiday. Enjoy a Caribbean-themed party atmosphere, with parades, calypso music and street food. Yes, dancing is encouraged! First held in 1966, the carnival has become a popular fixture on London’s calendar, so why not check it out for yourself in 2022? The carnival extends across several streets around the Notting Hill area, so it’s recommended to stick to public transport.
Located next door to Paddington rail station and close to Notting Hill, the luxury Paddington Boutique SPA at the Chilworth Hotel is ideal for enjoying the carnival, as well as exploring the rest of the city. Hop on the Tube at Paddington and get off at Ladbroke Grove for all the attractions of Notting Hill. The lovely townhouse hotel, situated on a tree-lined street, provides an oasis of calm, while the chic urban spa is designed to promote wellness, with Thalgo and Kaeso treatments, a Jacuzzi and fully-equipped gym. Book now.
Be part of the bombastic final night of the world’s greatest celebration of classical music. The last night is always popular and tickets sell out quickly, so act quickly if you want to be there. The Proms actually runs from 30 July to 10 September, so even if you can’t attend the final night, keep an eye out for other events at the Royal Albert Hall and across the country.
Located across the road from Kensington Gardens and only a few minutes’ walk from the Royal Albert Hall, the luxury Baglioni Hotel London is the perfect choice for enjoying live events at this wonderful venue, including the Proms. The hotel promises the finest in Italian hospitality and spa luxury for memorable weekends away in London. Enjoy a superb meal in the Brunello Restaurant and relax in the elegant spa, which offers pampering treatments and facilities that include experience showers, a relaxation room and gym. Book now.
If you love to watch world-class sport and want to see some great live action from across the Pond, keep an eye on Wembley, which will be hosting some regular-season American football games. While Covid-19 put things on hold, the National Football League (NFL) has proved to be a popular addition to the Wembley calendar, offering a look at some of the US’ finest professional athletes in action in this most visceral of sports.
At the upmarket K West Hotel & K Spa, you can combine a trip to the NFL at Wembley with some spa pampering on an exciting city break away to London. The boutique spa hotel is conveniently located in Shepherd’s Bush, close to excellent public transport links, the huge Westfield shopping centre, and the O2 Shepherd's Bush Empire live music venue. Unwind in modern, luxurious surroundings and retreat to the indulgent spa with its hydrotherapy pool and relaxing thermal suite. Book now.
While tickets may have sold out for Glastonbury 2022, there’s always 2023 to look forward to! The festival remains popular, among music fans and performers. So, plan ahead if you want to head to Worthy Farm in summer 2023 to enjoy all the diverse performances across the weekend, which promises to be another gloriously muddy musical adventure.
Swap Glastonbury’s mud for five-star spa luxury at The Royal Crescent Hotel & Spa for a weekend away to remember! Located in the elegant city of Bath on the edge of the stunning Cotswolds and housed in a wonderful Georgian crescent, the hotel offers a welcoming sanctuary and a superb base for exploring. Embrace the full Glastonbury experience by camping out, and then escape to the sanctuary of this wonderful spa hotel for first-class service, hospitality and spa indulgence. Book now.