SPA.KITCHEN’S HEALTH, FOOD AND FITNESS GUIDE TO BATH
Acorn Vegetarian Kitchen
This veggie restaurant may be small but it packs a punch. With wonderful views of nearby Bath Abbey, the menu is spectacular, following the seasons and championing local ingredients. Delights include: ‘truffled broccoli with cauliflower panna cotta and pickled kohlrabi’, ‘slow cooked winter squash with a pine nut risotto and gently cooked shredded brussel sprouts, garlic and a touch of lemon zest’ and ‘salted chocolate tart with peanut butter sorbet’.
2 North Parade Passage. 01225 446 059; www.acornvegetariankitchen.co.uk
The Green Rocket
Just over the road from Parade Gardens, this quaint award-winning veggie cafe covers it all: breakfast, light bites, lunch and supper along with a range of organic juices. There’s also a wide selection of vegan and gluten-free options. Oh and excellent coffee, too. Don’t miss the scrumptious Vietnamese Coconut Curry Bowl followed by the Lime and Basil Cheesecake.
One Pierrepont Street. 01225 420084; www.thegreenrocket.co.uk
Beyond the Kale
A colourful cafe and whole foods shop inside Green Park Station with rustic chairs, thick wooden tables and that happy organic look. A vibrant menu will leave you browsing for hours, featuring everything from homemade falafel and quinoa wraps to soups and an ever-changing variety of hot dishes. Their pancakes (accompanied by cacao hot chocolate) will make you consider going vegan.
Green Park Station. 01225 424121
Recently revamped under new ownership, this stately Georgian manor, set just outside Bath, is quirky and eclectic with a cool contemporary feel. Bedrooms are super comfortable, colourful art adorns the walls and the shiny bar (a local favourite) gives a joyful buzz. A substantial sports club with all you could possibly want completes the impressive picture. Next up is a magical woodland spa with treatments using herbs grown on site.
Brassknocker Hill. 01225 834644; www.combegrove.com
No15 Great Pulteney
Made up of three Georgian townhouses, this spanking new boutique hotel is setting hearts aflutter with its grand design, extraordinary collections (ask to see the kaleidoscopes) and eccentric touches (minibars in doll’s houses). Bedrooms take top prize with four-poster beds, roll-top baths and wall murals. There’s not a restaurant as such, more a café, but the imaginative cocktails are a must. A spa is winging its way to this hotspot soon.
15 Great Pulteney Street. 01225 807015; www.no15greatpulteney.co.uk
Gainsborough Bath Spa
A grade II-listed Georgian grande dame which looks the business and delivers, too. The 99 duck-egg blue rooms boast huge beds, high ceilings and tall sash windows. But it’s the ‘spa village’ which people really come for, the UK’s only hotel spa with thermal waters. Bathed in natural light with a glass atrium, you can ‘take the waters’ in style as you weave your way round three thermal pools, traditional and infrared saunas, a steam room and ice alcove.
Beau Street. 01225 358888; www.thegainsboroughbathspa.co.uk
Work out with a six-mile stroll through hidden valleys, woodlands and patchworks of small meadows, lined with colourful wild flowers. This walk shows the city at its best as you hop over stiles, past 18th-century follies, an Iron Age hill fort, and the glorious gardens of Prior Park, which include one of the world’s only four Palladian bridges. Pack a picnic, choose a field and finish off with blackberries picked along the way.
The star of the city – and quite rightly so. Constructed around 70AD as a grand bathing and socialising complex, this landmark, using Bath’s natural hot springs, is one of the most well-preserved Roman remains in the world. The Great Bath, the epicentre of the building, is magnificent but don’t miss the other chambers which include ancient heated rooms, changing rooms and plunge pools.
Stall Street. 01225 477 785; www.romanbaths.co.uk
Get your spiritual fix at one of the last great medieval churches of England. A place of Christian worship for over 1,200 years, the church remains as live as ever – go on a Sunday afternoon and catch Evensong. The abbey is a visual feast, too, with magnificent stained glass windows, columns of honey-gold stone and unique sculpture ladders of angels.
Thermae Bath Spa
For another divine thermal water experience, head to this award-winning natural spa. There’s the indoor Minerva Bath with its flowing curves and grand columns but it’s all about the open-air rooftop pool with stunning views over the city (go at sunset for an all-out experience). Soak in the warm, mineral-rich waters and let yourself zone out before plumping for further bliss with one of the 40 spa treatments on offer.
The Hetling Pump Room, Hot Bath Street. 01225 331234; www.thermaebathspa.com
Bath Farmer’s Market
One of those delicious places where you just want to snap everything up. Fruit, veg, homemade pies, fresh fish, organic meats and plenty of sweet treats (Southside Farm’s cakes are excellent)… Come in October and catch the Great Bath Feast, a month-long food festival celebrating the best of the city’s local eateries and producers.
From eco-friendly shampoo to nutritional supplements to Pukka tea, this food store has natural products sorted. There are also therapy rooms which host a variety of treatments (reflexology, massages, hot stone therapy) plus dose out nutritional advice.
10 George Street
A one-stop shop for all things vegetarian and ethically sourced from fruit and veg to deli delicacies, and help-yourself-style grains and spices along with many vegan and gluten alternatives. Enjoy generously-filled rolls, colourful cakes and the best samosas in town.
37 Walcot Street. 01225 465519; www.harvest-bath.coop