We've arrived... at Cliveden House and Spa
By Ian Thomson
Renowned and infamous for its parties
Enormous, centuries-old and surrounded by acres of National Trust parkland, Cliveden House has long been a retreat for parties and sporting pursuits (we use the term loosely – who could forget the Profumo Affair that kicked off here in the Sixties?). Once owned by William Waldorf Astor, Cliveden has undergone a multi-million pound, two-year refurbishment and is looking a more tempting retreat than ever.
Revamped Spa Experience
The suits of armour still stand guard in the panelled hall, where you’ll also find priceless tapestries, a 16th century Italian fireplace, and family portraits, including one of Lady Nancy Astor by John Singer Sargeant. Moving on to The Cliveden Spa. It’s also been revamped and now delivers more treatment rooms where guests can indulge with treatments by cult boutique range Oskia. Thomson & Scott Skinny Prosecco is being poured here – what’s indulgence without a little healthy hedonism?
What hasn’t changed is the UK’s last listed outdoor swimming pool. It’s where those romps happened with a certain John Profumo and Christine Keeler, and thinking back to a heady mix of Russian spies and the fall of a government certainly adds frisson to a swim.
Cliveden House & Spa, Taplow, Berkshire (clivedenhouse.co.uk; 01628 668561).