Hotels in Harrogate district jump on rising ‘ecotherapy’ trend
Last updated Jul 7, 2023
Woodland spring bathing hot tub
A freshwater hot tub at Rudding Park's new woodland spring bathing experience

In the past few weeks, three local hotels have opened new outdoor spa experiences to customers.

Swinton Estate, Grantley Hall and Rudding Park are hoping to attract guests with the promise of ‘reconnecting with nature’.

In June, Swinton Estate offered up a new wild swimming experience in its private lake at the heart of the hotel’s grounds.

A week later Grantley Hall opened a ‘Nordic spa garden’ complete with outdoor ice baths and a sauna for immersion therapy.

Gillian McGraffin, spa and wellness manager at Grantley Hall’s Three Graces Spa, said:

“With the increasing trend of cold-water immersion therapy making more noise in the wellness space recently, we knew that we wanted to offer guests something new that had many incredible health benefits.”

Shortly after Grantley announced this new spa addition, Rudding Park opened a woodland spring bathing experience, equipped with mineral-enriched freshwater tubs.

Sarah Johnson, head of the hotel’s spa, said:

“Woodland spring bathing is a wonderful way to relax; the stillness of the water promotes a sense of calm, heightening the connection with nature.

“Offering guests something new and embracing our natural environment is really important.”

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All three additions demonstrate the increasingly popularity of outdoor spa and wellness experiences – often referred to under the broader term of ‘ecotherapy’.

It encompasses a number of therapies and practices which promote interactions with nature as valuable tools for improving psychological and physiological health.

The demand for outdoor spa experiences has grown significantly since covid.

According to data collected by the People and Nature Survey last year, nearly half of adults in England spent more time outdoors than they did before the pandemic. Meanwhile, 39% also said that after the pandemic, nature and wildlife had become more important than ever to their well-being

Commenting on the trend, Ms Johnson told the Stray Ferret:

“The popularity of embracing the outdoors to boost well-being shows no sign of slowing down.”

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