Best Wine Travel Destinations 2015: Unwind, with wines

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What do you find more relaxing: a full body massage or large glass of wine by the fire? At The Vineyard Spa in Newbury, there’s no need to choose.

It is perhaps a sign of our growing appreciation of the finer things in life, that England now boasts its first ever wine-themed spa resort.

This luxury spa resort is set amid the peaceful Berkshire countryside, with a golf course right next door. It is reassuringly off the beaten track, yet close enough to Reading, Swindon and London to justify a weekend away.

Breathe in the country air as you explore the sprawling ground. Highclere Castle (aka ‘Downton Abbey’) is just a few miles away, and staff at The Vineyard are happy to arrange chauffeured trips for fans.

But once you step through the front door of the hotel, you will never want to leave. This is a place for serious wine-lovers seeking an exclusive and enriching experience. From the wood panelled walls, to the open fireplaces and one of the country’s finest private art collections, it is all old world charm with just a hint of hedonism. The art collection even features a bespoke painting called ‘The Judgement of Paris’, which immortalises the 1976 evening when Californian wines beat established French names in a blind taste test. This painting is the perfect introduction to the real draw of The Vineyard – its wine collection.

Within its vast cellars, The Vineyard boasts a 30,000 bottle strong wine collection (mostly New World wines), all of which have been expertly handpicked by the resort’s owner and wine connoisseur Sir Peter Michaels, a firm convert to Californian grapes.

If this isn’t enough for you, the in-house spa also offers guests the chance to relax with wine-themed treatments, or ‘Grapetherapy’. These include wine baths, red grape body wraps, and revitalising red grape facial treatments. Needlesstosay, guests are encouraged to enjoy a glass of wine while indulging in their treatments.

The hotel facilities too are second to none. The Vineyard is currently the only five star hotel in Newbury and its rooms are regularly voted highly on review sites such as TripAdvisor.

Daily wine tastings are held on site, hosted by the hotel’s expert sommeliers, while special tasting menus are paired with complementary tipples in The Vineyard’s award-winning restaurant.

Discretion and exclusivity are the key to The Vineyard’s success – this is a place to indulge in your greatest pleasures without a care in the world.

So let loose, get comfortable, and succumb to the sybaritic pleasures of good wine, opulent surroundings and a world class spa.