Rudding Park Spa

Last week Rudding Park Hotel (Harrogate) opened a brand new spa.  On time and on budget (rare!) the design team responsible have created an oasis of serenity in the heart of Yorkshire.  Invited to the stunning opening night party, here’s what I found.

From the moment the glass doors part, it’s sheer indulgence.   The pool can be glimpsed from ground level by visitors to Horto café and we’re told the water is from Rudding Parks own bore hole… I am immediately taken by the size of the whole facility – it’s impressively spacious.

Reception and shop

Lifestyle shop; some genuinely great pieces in here – was sorely tempted!

Horto Restaurant

Horto Café offers contemporary fine dining and is open to the public.  Guests to the spa can use Horto during the day whilst robed till 5.30pm.  There is a seamless transition from spa to café and terrace (shown below) which wraps round the indoor pool – (there’s plenty of loungers for sunbathing!)

Inside the spa there is everything one could wish for; the attention to detail and thought shown in each zone is exceptional.  As well as the expected treatment rooms, mani/pedicure bar and hair salon, there are four mind and sense zones (available to all guests booking treatments).

Upstairs is the Roof Top Spa with hydrotherapy pool, steam rooms, sauna, foot spas (and more); the pièce de résistance – The Spa Garden.

Luxury Steam Room

Hydrotherapy infinity pool

Owing to being blessed with such amazing weather, the party was held on the Roof Top Spa Garden, not too many pictures from here as it was full of guests so it’d be nice to return and see it in its natural state.

The Spa Garden is a thing of beauty.  Created by Matthew Wilson, colours used extend the seasons, there’s nothing ‘standard’ or ‘token gesture’ here… to relax among the carefully-planned use of plants, trees and foliage will, I’m sure, delight garden lovers.

The spa bath, sun deck, sauna cabin, shower and all you’d really need for a complete day basking in the Yorkshire sun.   The hotel can be seen in distance, the unwavering commitment to quarrying the same stone for the spa-build as the hotel was every bit worth it!  Quality exudes.  During his speech, owner Simon Mackaness shared some of the stories from conception to completion saying there had been 400 plans and 2000 revisions… In my humble opinion, they have not been in vain.


It was not till writing this post that I went to the spa website to get an idea on prices, I was pleasantly surprised.  Visit the Rudding Park Spa website here to find out more.





21 reasons for Outdoors

We don’t choose to love the outdoors… do we?  I know I didn’t, it just grew on me (see more in the post notes at the bottom if you’re interested) and now I actively pursue getting lost in the great outdoors.  What is more, I find myself encouraging others to!

I find it exhilarating, life-giving and sheer soul food.  It’s a love story.  Yet this has only come about for me in recent years so it is entirely possible for people to grow to love the countryside and here are 21 reasons from recent days out.  Some shot from behind a windscreen, all just very candid.  They were my moments in time, mostly Yorkshire and in the last days of Winter hence it’s pretty barren everywhere.  That said, our little corner of the world’s quite beautiful don’t you think?

Outdoors 13Outdoors 14Outdoors 15Outdoors 10Outdoors 9Outdoors 11Outdoors 16Outdoors 18Outdoors 20Outdoors 4Outdoors 2Outdoors 13

Outdoors 18

Outdoors 21Outdoors 20Outdoors 17Outdoors 15



Post Notes:

A few years ago I began going outdoors regularly whilst going through a very hard time personally which lasted years.  Having read a book around that time that was from the school of thought we should be exercising six times a week because every day we do we tell our bodies (a la caveman days), ‘we are not going to die today are going to survive’.  This became a constant in my world and in all weathers… I mean ALL weathers, I would go walking and running for an hour at a time, often driving 13 miles, going for a run, then driving 13 miles home.  Being outdoors five to six times a week around countryside, open air and landscape meant I grew to love the outdoors.  Number one, it’s not difficult because it’s so beautiful where we live and secondly because I feel there’s a me I have only ever shared with the outdoors.  I have been with it on my worst days so there’s an affinity – it knows the journey.  This is possibly the most personal I’ve been on this blog so whilst ever I didn’t want to make the post all about this footnote, feel it lends a deeper element that perhaps others also feel…

Maybe this should be titled 22 reason for Outdoors 😉

IntroJuicing the zone of least comfort

When you dare to step out side of your comfort zone, you’ll say ‘yes’ to things you would otherwise say ‘no’ to.
An inner ‘no’ to an event invitation became an outward ‘yes’ when I was challenged by two people with “well why wouldn’t you go to it?”.  With a ‘fine I’ll go!’ I Carpe Diem’d it and attended my first ever blogger event.
Don’t be laughing!  We all have our differing levels of comfort zones and I just do NOT go to group events like this… like, ever.  Mingling… a word that sends shivers down my spine is one of the main reasons…that and anything ‘groupy’… help!
The event was a juicing event, a collaboration of Currys with Phillips in Leeds via an email invitation out of the blue.  For the sake of the blog, plus already being a daily juicer, I said ‘yes’ and dared to step outside the zone I call comfort.
Lambert's YardLambertsYard InstagramYoga ReadyLightingWaiting
The event took place at Lambert’s Yard, a gorgeous design-led creative event space.  Arriving for the start, the announcement then came, “we will be starting in half an hour”.  Half an hour on MINGLE TIME?? Oh kill me now!  Bloggers all around were mingling, chatting and taking photos with oh-so-many-cameras while I do my best nonchalant phone-checking.
We are separated into groups and rotate at half hour intervals between various stations.  Already well into juicing, there was nothing at the juicing stations that was new to me  but I was glad for lunch!  The two highlights therefore were a practical talk by an excellent nutritionist Shakela Shan (find out more about Shakela here) and finally a session of rocket yoga with Amanda from Yoga Elementz.  Having practised yoga at home for eight years this was my first session in public so to be told I’d been doing it right all this time was a bonus.  The thing with bloggers at these events is they just can’t stop taking photos – quite funny.
Juicy Ingredients 1Juicy Ingredients 4

Juice served from a bar... just wrong!

Juicy Ingredients 2

Sass says it's good

Sass says it’s good and writes a fab blog

Nutrition Guru Shaklea Shan Sunflower Seeds, Goji's and Chocolate Juicy Ingredients 5

Yoga Annnd relax! Namaste

Having being 99% going to bolt for the door after the first ten minutes, three hours later I left and walked through the streets of Leeds back to my car.
Was it worth it??
Well I think it’s all about the stretch (no pun intended!).  Once we do a thing once, if we make it through, the next time it may be just a little less scary – I made a few new friends and now know what goes on at a blogger event.  Would I go to another blogger event in the future… well…I might just!
So, this week, I dare you to say ‘yes’ to a normally automatic ‘no’ for you and see what happens!
Want more about the juicing?  Here’s one I wrote earlier and  here’s what Currys had to say about the event.


This year I succumbed to the juicing ‘thing’.  Having seen countless pictures on Instagram of people’s jars of dark green sludge I wondered what the heck was the big deal… (I mean really)?!  But a few months ago after a little research into the health benefits of ingesting so much goodness into the body in such a pure form, decided to get myself a machine and give it  a whirl.

Juice in a jar

My health is something I’m committed to, it’s a deliberate choice and, certainly for the last ten years would say we eat well so I wasn’t expecting a radical change of any kind.  As with many health decisions, it’s probably more a case of all the illnesses and ailments we don’t get as it is seeing a drastic difference in any way,  (a post I wrote last year looks at this a little more called Wellbeing and the compound effect of Invisible Habits).  I found I enjoyed the taste and now juice every other day; visits to the doctor might be twice a year across the family; colds and coughs etc rare… so something must be working!

If you’ve considered juicing I’d recommend you go for it – there’s really nothing to lose and your bodies only going to be better for it.

Here’s one of my favourite recipes:

2 apples
2 carrots
2 sticks of celery
1 large uncooked beetroot
Large handful of kale
Generous slice of lemon
Even more generous amount of ginger
Then blend in:
Third of avocado
Powder from 1 capsule of friendly bacteria
2 teaspoons of wheatgrass powder
1 teaspoon of maca powder
1 teaspoon of spirulina powder
I learned about juicing benefits from Jason Vale here, bought this juicer at half price and get my powder supplements from Holland and Barrett.
All you juicers out there do let me know your favourite concoctions!
Juice in a jar 2

From Fall in Yorkshire with Love

A few posts ago I promised some pictures of Yorkshire in the Fall… so these would be those!  All have been taken rather quickly on a phone, whilst out running my beloved hills as the weather has been so glorious.  The rich golden tones of ‘now’ are evident in the sunrise which also has felt much richer since the clocks went back.

It is a beautiful, beautiful part of the world and all the coaxing I need to get out for an hour… what do you think?


This burr was hanging in the sunlight suspended on a single thread of spiders web!

This burr was hanging in the sunlight suspended on a single thread of spiders web!

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Ilkley 1


Adore this house… its setting is just like something from a movie.

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Too Busy to be Inspirational?

Inspired People

This quote is one I have recollection of seeing in the not too distant past Read More

The Silent Spring

Ribblehead Viaduct

We live in a countryside town called Ilkley.  Ilkley is very beautiful.  Right now, nature is going crazy with the arrival of spring and it is very colourful.

Spring is also taking place not too many miles away but this time the remote kind of countryside.  This spring landscape isn’t so obvious.  Apart from very small lambs and the trees becoming that fresh limey green again, there is little differentiating colour.

Spring here has a colour palette of a different kind.  It is browns, creams, greys and greens.  On a dull day like the one I took these pictures, you may even say it was drab.  Yet seen through different eyes it is very beautiful; it just as magical as the spring of brighter colours.  It is quiet, not ‘showy’, doesn’t demand attention and is extremely relaxing to be around, it is soul food.  For the duration of my time there, it was mine and I its.


Time for School!


I Love Stone Walls


Green Gate


National Trust, Lambing Time

You can't sit with us!

Sheep in the fog

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