Courtesy of Dorchester Collection
October 15, 2010

Just when it seemed like the English countryside couldn’t be more appealing, a trio of properties (all within an hour’s drive of London) is opening to lure the most discerning of travelers. Situated on 240 acres near Ascot, the Dorchester Collection’s Coworth Park (doubles from $365) has 70 rooms spread across former stables, cottages, and an 18th-century whitewashed mansion. The real highlight, though, is the semi-subterranean spa with organic Dr. Alkaitis treatments.

Set to open next month, Lifehouse (doubles from $285), in Essex, is all about wellness: sybarites can partake in well-being consultations, tai chi and yoga classes, and Asian-inspired bath treatments on the grounds of a 400-year-old manor.

Also making its debut in December: London Syon Park, a Waldorf Astoria Hotel (doubles from $280), on the Duke of Northumberland’s 200-acre estate, where the 137 rooms are surrounded by perfectly manicured 18th-century gardens.

Coworth Park

Love is in the air at this reinvented Georgian manor set on 240 acres of private parkland near Windsor Castle, 45 minutes outside London. In fact, the very sentiment is spelled out in capital letters in the contemporary light fixture over the bar. The Dorchester Collection’s first country-house hotel was designed by British firm Fox Linton, which cleverly balanced the gravitas of a grand estate with whimsical flourishes worthy of a stylish aristocrat. The 70-room property pays homage to genteel rural pursuits with polo ponies on the lawn, a staff suited in mocha tweeds, leather-covered vanity tables, and equestrian-themed artwork. Guests can doff their muddy Wellingtons after a ramble in the woods; linger over smoked salmon finger sandwiches and Silver Needle Yin Zhen tea in the drawing room; and thumb through The Book of Idle Pleasures while soaking in a deep copper tub. In the main restaurant, chef John Campbell’s roast suckling pig with pork and bacon jus is a sumptuous pleasure all its own.

Lifehouse Spa & Hotel

All about wellness here, sybarites can partake in well-being consultations, tai chi and yoga classes, and Asian-inspired bath treatments on the grounds of a 400-year-old manor.

London Syon Park, a Waldorf Astoria Hotel

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