Ye Olde Bell Hotel and Spa in Retford has the most fascinating history dating back to the 17th Century when it began life as a farm. In the times of highwaymen and stagecoaches, it became a popular stop off, and when the pub began offering rooms, it attracted a wealthier clientele, with even Queen Victoria staying here in 1835!
Charlie Chaplin, Shirley Bassey and later, celebrities like One Direction have also stayed at Ye Olde Bell over the years, lured by the charm and history in the main building, and the incredible luxury award winning spa in its grounds.
And while 19th century definitely meets 21st century in this setting, marrying the old and new doesn’t seem one bit out of place here..
Suites, Rooms and Lodges at Ye Olde Bell
A recent refurb to the grounds means that Ye Old Bell Hotel and Spa now offers accommodation in the older part of the hotel for a more authentic experience, or across the carpark, there’s now the option to book the modern and contemporary lodges – The Grove and The Rufford.
In keeping with the older style of the hotel, you can also opt for the more traditional suites. Medieval, regal and boasting opulent furnishings, guests can choose from The Lady Jane, The Victoria, The Bowness and The Firth.
Luxe Bible stayed in Ye Olde Bell’s luxurious Grove accommodation – a spacious romantic bolt hole set over two floors or indeed perfect for a family occasion when linked via the adjoining door into the similarly sized Rufford lodge.
We loved the kitchen area with large dining table – perfect for entertaining or grabbing a social drink with the family before dinner. We made full use of the cosy sofas by the fireplace – a truly comfortable home away from home.
Upstairs, there’s a double bedroom which oozes luxury – roll top bath, glorious shower, and windows which capture the sunset just beautifully over the hills.
Ye Olde Bell’s Award-Winning Spa
Of course, in a spa hotel, you most definitely don’t want to be spending all your time in the room and you’ll not be disappointed by Ye Olde Bell’s fabulous facilities.
This award-winning spa has 11 different thermal offerings, from the Stone Bath steam room where steam is released as a result of the water hitting mineral coals, to the Snow Storm Walk (which requires some serious mind prep beforehand!), you hit the button and go for it with surprising results!
The indoor / outdoor Vitality Pool is an experience in itself, featuring recliners, water massage jets and a mini air tub, while the relaxation area outside in the stunning garden has plenty of different areas with alpine chalets and heated loungers for ultimate chill out vibes.
The Sabbia Med room was definitely more my thing than the cold spa treatments – a therapy session in a beach themed room which takes you from sunlight to sunset in 30 minutes. My friend and I felt relaxed and rejuvenated afterwards, as low levels of UV are emitted to combat the effects of SAD and lift the spirits. We enjoyed a glass of bubbles while basking in the various light combinations, while sat on a deck chair!
Queen’s Jubilee Special Spa Package
To celebrate the Queen’s Jubilee, Ye Olde Bell Hotel and Spa is offering up a package fit for Her Majesty! Combining spa day with gourmet lunch, a luxury cocktails and bespoke treatments which include some of her favourite fragrances! The package costs £180pp on weekdays and £190pp on weekends.
Restaurants and Bars
Ye Olde Bell has three dining areas – the glam art deco styled Restaurant Bar 1650 and brasserie style St Leger Bistro-by-the-Bar. We feasted on starters like the roast king oyster mushrooms with white onion marmalade and chestnut crumb, along with seared pumpkin breast and pumpkin tagine. I devoured my main course – a honey glazed Gressingham duck with thyme jus and truffled pomme puree. Pure home cooking at its best, generous portions and quality ingredients tick all the boxes, ensuring that Ye Olde Bell excels in all areas of the hotel.
With gorgeous rooms, a spa that offers up far more than the average spa, and a restaurant that surpasses expectation, Ye Olde Bell Hotel and Spa makes for a luxurious stay on every level. A definite recommendation from the Luxe Bible team. There are various packages and special offers available, check them out and make your booking here.