Do you fancy a day as James Bond (or as a Bond girl), seeing how the other half live in the luxurious surroundings of Cornwall’s poshest hotel? If you do (and who wouldn’t?), then book yourself on to a spa day at the Scarlet Hotel on the cliffs overlooking Mawgan Porth’s sandy beach.
“A pint of Tribute please, shaken not stirred”.
Drinks orders taken (the girls opted for glasses of local Camel Valley sparkling wine), we took off our fluffy robes and climbed into a cliff top wood-fired hot tub and looked down on the surfers as the waves crashed onto the shore below.
Life can get stressful at times, but not at the 37-room Hotel Scarlet. Kids are not allowed and groups are limited to four. It really is a couple’s retreat, although there are a few unwanted guests – the huge seagulls loitering around on the roof. The staff are armed with water pistols to shoot these pests if they come close to breaching the peace.
After our half-hour soak, we jumped into the outdoor natural swimming pool with its reeds that filter the water. The Scarlet is proud to be an ‘eco’ hotel, and has won many awards since it opened in 2009 for its sustainability initiatives – you can see these on show in one of the lounges.
As well as providing a variety of bespoke massages and treatments, there’s a steam room and chlorine-free indoor pool with cocoon-like relaxation pods swinging from the ceiling.
The hotel grounds include wild grass gardens on the cliffside, with huge red ‘Fatboy’ beanbags dotted around – great for lazing on and staring out to sea.
A two-course gourmet lunch is included in the price for day visitors, although we were happy with our steak sandwiches from the bar later on, which we enjoyed as the sun set over the Atlantic Ocean turning the horizon pink.
After dark, the grounds are eerily peaceful, especially once the seagulls have gone to bed. We were so relaxed we really didn’t want to leave.
You don’t have to be a millionaire or a lower league professional footballer to visit The Scarlet, but it would help.
The rooms, all of which are sea-facing, cost from £190 per night (with breakfast). The spa welcomes day guests, but people can’t have just one treatment or use the pool and then go – it encourages people to spend the day there so they can truly unwind, and has a range of day spa offers.
You can find more information on the spa and the hotel here