Although it might seem straightforward, deciding where to host a special occasion is a head scratcher.
No matter where you live there are lots of options. It’s easy to book somewhere you know, perhaps your favourite local restaurant or pub. There’s nothing wrong with this, but it’s good to change things up sometimes. Especially if you’re feeling a little bored with the usual.
Then, the question arises. How do I make it special, truly special? Perhaps you want more than simply a meal out. What you want is to properly mark the occasion, and make it one to remember. This is exactly what visiting Bowood Hotel, Spa & Golf Resort is all about.
One of the main things we pride ourselves on at Bowood is being able host events and occasions of all types—whether intimate or grand, and everything in between.
It could be you’re planning an anniversary with your partner, and need some well earned “us” time, or you have a family birthday partay, party, coming up. These intimate special occasions are perfect at Bowood. You’ll find a magnificent rural setting, and stylish, accommodating spaces to hold your private event.
Or, you may not be planning a small event at all. Has the office Christmas party fallen on your shoulders? Are you searching for a conference space? Gala dinner? Or even space to hold a religious ceremony?
At Bowood we can accommodate groups of up to 200 people. If in doubt, try us. Whatever the size and scope of your event, we’ll do our very best to help.
For our passionate culinary team at Bowood, being in Wiltshire is a pleasure. Right on their doorstep is some of the finest produce our country has to offer.
For us, the quality and origin of our ingredients is everything. We’re committed where we can to supporting local businesses and making sure what we source is consistent and excellent. Whilst it’s possible to make a delicious meal from inexpensive ingredients, it’s not possible to make one from poor ingredients. Also, it doesn’t matter if we’re cooking for the two of you or a full entourage, we’ll ensure your experience is exceptional.
Unlike a restaurant or a pub, at Bowood you can improve your special occasion by melting your tension and drifting away at our award-winning spa. We have a varied range of signature treatments, from hot stone and bamboo massages to full wellness rituals and organic skincare.
Especially if you’re coming as a couple, or a group of friends, you could extend your visit to a peaceful spa weekend and leave us feeling rejuvenated.
Check out our spa breaks and find one that fits.
Golf is (in our opinion) the ultimate sport. It’s leisurely, polite, versatile, complex, and lots of fun. On a sunny day, nothing beats a round of golf. Furthermore, it’s a game for all ages and abilities; a rare example of an inclusive sport.
At Bowood we have one of the best 18-hole golf courses in the country. We’re not just saying that either. It’s the PGA official golf course for the South West.
A golf break is an ideal business weekend away, sprinkled with fine food, fine drink, and picturesque Wiltshire countryside. Great for team building, great for health, great for the mind.
Whilst our Hotel, Spa & Golf Resort is separate from our house and gardens, there’s no reason you can’t combine the two. If you’re hosting a family event here, you could stroll around our diverse gardens before an evening meal. We have an arboretum with over 700 species of trees, private walled and terrace gardens, beautiful herbaceous borders, woodland gardens, and acres of Capability Brown parkland to explore.
Bowood House is also a wonder to experience, with many impressive stately rooms, fine art, and exquisite antiques. Here, you’ll be immersed in significant history—including Joseph Priestley’s discovery of oxygen in 1774.
The Bowood Estate is an idyllic backdrop for events and special occasions. Just think of the photos and how fantastic they’ll look. Celebrating is more celebratory at Bowood.
We’re based in quintessential English countryside between the Cotswolds and the North Wessex Downs—two of our country’s most cherished AONBs (Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty). The countryside near us is a lovely, soul-stirring setting for a birthday break, anniversary, mini moon, Valentine’s escape, or spontaneous romantic gesture.
With only modest travelling you’re amongst rolling downland or beneath the shade of a willow on a verdant Cotswolds riverbank. You can be on a hillside, awestruck by giant chalk figures, carved from the white earth, or deep in ancient, wild woodland. We’re very lucky to be where we are, surrounded by iconic scenery—that has inspired art and literature for centuries.
We’re sure it will inspire you too.
For a closer look at events, special occasions, and celebrations at Bowood Hotel, Spa & Golf Resort—please click here.
Thanks for reading.
With the shenanigans of Christmas and the New Year’s celebrations behind us, many of us will look towards health and wellness this winter, and of course, any exciting plans we’ve made for the year ahead.
Here at Bowood, we have events happening throughout the whole of winter to keep our spirits up, even if it’s a little bit dull and gloomy outside.
Soothe tired bodies and take some time out from the rush of daily life in our spa at Bowood. It’s only been a week or two of January and, no doubt, we’re already feeling an increase in tension behind our neck and building up of knots in our muscles (and that’s, in addition, to all the socialising with family and in-laws at Christmas).
Our spa days at Bowood offer you the chance to utterly relax. Enjoy our premium facilities including the infinity pool, jacuzzi, crystal steam room, rock sauna and Techno Gym, and perhaps gift yourself a pamper treatment too.
Swimming for just 30 minutes once a week is a method of reducing stress and enjoying some “you-time”. At Bowood, along with our steam and sauna facilities, you’ll no doubt want to spend much longer in our pool and health suite.
Relaxing in the spa can help you feel good. It could help reduce your blood pressure and is a great way to get moving.
All eateries no matter how big or how small seem to be jumping on board with the new awareness month, known as ‘Veganuary’.
With 2019 being a massive year in relation to the growth in popularity of plant-based diets, it is no surprise that this annual celebration is being adopted by so many in 2020.
Should you be making your way to Bowood this January, Vegan or not, you can have the option to chow down on our most elaborate and creative vegan menu to date in The Shelburne Restaurant.
Do you know your history? If so, our next Quiz Night in The Clubhouse Brasserie could be calling for you.
The theme for our next Bowood Quiz Night is 20th Century Events. Think WW1, the first man on the moon, women getting the right to vote to name a few…
We may well be in Wiltshire, however, that doesn’t mean we can’t join in the Scottish Burns Night celebrations.
Warm the cockles with a night of whisky, haggis and January jolliness…
Bowood will brighten the depths of winter this January with a traditional Scottish Burns Night menu in The Shelburne Restaurant.
Expect delicious Scottish traditional food and a choice of Scottish whiskies.
Ok, so if even if you are laying off the calories this January, why not reward yourself by wrapping up the diet a day early with an end of month feasting for only £49 in The Shelburne Restaurant?
That’s right, our Two Dine for £49 is returning with a brand new menu.
This is most certainly going to fill up quickly so make sure you booking well in advance.
We all know the day is coming. And if you want to treat that special someone in your life, then we have just the thing in our Shelburne Restaurant on 14th February 2019.
Enjoy a romantic Valentine’s Day Dinner, cooked by our talented Head Chef, Ed Fortune and expect a glass of fizz on your arrival.
It must be love.
Get ahead of the game, ready for summer, with some winter golf coaching Bowood PGA Golf Academy.
Whether you are a complete beginner or are wanting to hone your skills, you’ll benefit from the knowledge and teaching from our PGA Golf Pro’s. And if you’re a Bowood Golf Member you’ll get a discount on your lessons too.
Should you not fancy coaching, then use the quieter winter season to get out on the course for less with 18-holes Monday to Friday from only £35 per person with 50 range balls included and 10% off in the Bowood Golf Pro Shop.
Have you pledged to get fit for the new year? Or do you feel a bit out of your depth at your local gym?
Bowood is a welcoming place for new gym-goers, as well as those with more experience. Our personal trainers will consider your current fitness and work on your strengths and weaknesses.
The mission? To get you in better shape for 2020.
If you are already fairly fit and want to take your fitness to the next level then why not sign up to Bowood’s 10km fun run?
It’s a perfect run if you’re thinking of taking on a half marathon or marathon in the future, the Bowood House 10km is in its 32nd year.
On a slightly different note, engaged couples may choose to make a booking for our Wedding Open Evening in February.
Come and visit the hotel and see if we have what you are looking for to create your perfect wedding.
With beautiful gardens and an adventure playground for children, it is well worth considering purchasing an early bird season ticket for Bowood House and Gardens.
Early-bird sale ends on 31st January 2020.
If you want to enjoy the best winter yet, then become a member of Bowood this January. You can enjoy all these fabulous activities and more, all at a discounted price.
Interested in any of the above goings-on? If so, drop us an email and we’d love to count you in.
Make some time to rejuvenate after a busy and indulgent festive period ready for the spring…
What does the phrase ‘New Year New Me’ have in common with Michael Bublé, tinsel… cloves?
For 91.7% of our lives, the phrase is dormant. Out of sight, out of mind (in the dusty attic of the brain). But, just like clockwork, when mid-December comes around you can be sure it’ll be back.
We grow out of Santa and the Tooth Fairy, but if we grow out of New Year then, as of December 2019, we haven’t. Like a cringeworthy but ultimately loveable Christmas film, it wins us round every year. The reason we are so receptive to it is simple.
Human cultures find the possibility of re-invention compelling. We always have. The ancient Babylonians are said to have been the first people to make New Year’s resolutions, 4,000 years ago. Wind forward two millennia and the Romans made January the western calendar’s reset button. Roman new year celebrations honoured Janus, their god of beginnings and endings. We honour beginnings and endings to this day. They frame our lives. They divide up the profound dimensions of time and space into neat sections. Today, tomorrow, next year. It gives us control in a mysterious and often unknowable universe.
Few people make religious resolutions these days. Even fewer know who Janus is (now you’re one of them). But the first day of the year and the decade (1/1/2020 of course being both) are new beginnings to us now as much as they were to the Romans.
At the dawn of a new decade, maybe we should ask ourselves if traditional resolutions are worth the sacrifices we make for them? Think of the classics: you buy a gym membership, or vow to diet, or give up something you enjoy. Resolutions usually involve strict sacrifice and obedience. It’s small wonder we tire of them so quickly; we need wriggle room and more positive reinforcement. Forget compulsive exercise and carb vetoes. Maybe the answer lies in finding sports and healthy foods we actually enjoy, and slowly building them into our routine?
So far so good, but the meteoric rise of wellness trend has changed our New Year New Me mentality. Wellness, the pursuit of optimum wellbeing in our emotional and physical lives, has changed when we seek re-invention. It needn’t be once a year. It cannot be undone by a false move. Wellness suggests that we can improve ourselves in any moment of any day. It’s as easy as breathing deeply with a calm app, and as quick as a five minute sauna session to sweat the small stuff away.
Crucially, wellness is about feeling good, rather than looking good. You know the fizz-fuelled optimism of midnight on December 31st ? Wellness rides the same wave, but it doesn’t come crashing down on Jan 1st , or even Blue Monday. Wellness won’t tell you you’ve failed, or serve you a mocktail of guilt.
The best thing about focusing on wellness in 2020 over a set of narrow resolutions is that it tends to last. Traditional NY resolutions tend to be about purging ourselves after our festive indulgences. They smack of guilt and dissatisfaction. But wellness is part of a wider commitment to living a good life.
Maybe it’s the lack of regiment that makes it sustainable in the long-term? We might like to shake things up every now and then, but that’s the exception to the rule. We are creatures of habit. Harsh measures like giving up sugar or signing up for a 6am boot camp might last a few weeks. Making time for simple pleasures and noticing how they benefit your health can last a lifetime.
Escape the city to wander in dense greenery, spotting wildlife and breathing fresh air. Curl up before a roaring fire and read a good book. Take a reflexology class or have a massage and reconnect with your body’s signals. These behaviours are naturally rewarding, so you are far more likely to fall into the habit of repeating them.
If you’re planning a festive getaway at Bowood this winter, you’re probably wondering what there is to see and do during your stay. And you’re in luck!
There are so many things to see in Wiltshire this winter, from festive markets to magical winter wonderlands. Here are 5 of the top festive treats waiting for you over the festive season.
Longleat is a fantastic attraction throughout the year. But the most magical time to visit is during the winter when it holds its annual Festival of Light.
This is a real treat for the eyes. During the Festival of Light, Longleat is decorated with hundreds of beautiful lanterns that illuminate the whole area. Go on a journey through the lights and explore myths and legends, magical creatures and incredible structures, all of which are brought to vivid life by light in the darkness. It is not to be missed!
This year, the Festival of Light is running from November 9th 2019 to January 6th 2020, but it only runs on certain dates, so you’ll want to plan your trip and book ahead rather than just turning up.
You’ll find several Christmas markets popping up in the area over the festive season, but the best of the lot is Bath Christmas Market.
Over a few weeks in November and December, dozens of beautiful chalets will arrive in the Georgian streets of Bath, all lit up with festive lights and welcoming you in to take a look at their goods.
You’ll find festive gifts, decorations and artisan products from local designers, along with delicious food including hog roasts, mulled wine and all your festive favourites.
It will be held from November 28th to December 15th, and it is open daily from 10am. The fair closes at 6pm on Sundays, 7pm on Mondays to Wednesdays, and 8pm on Thursdays to Saturdays.
Another top attraction this festive season is the Enchanted Christmas at the wonderful Westonbirt Arboretum. Again, this is a fantastic attraction throughout the year, but you really don’t want to miss it if you’re in the area over the winter.
The beautiful garden is home to thousands of species of trees from all over the world, and during the Enchanted Christmas, you will be able to explore the woodland trail. This illuminated trail will take you through the enchanted wood where you can admire the beautiful lights illuminating the trees and discover some creatures along the way.
Enjoy some arts and crafts while you’re here, and visit the Christmas market too. And don’t forget to warm up with some mulled wine or hot chocolate.
The Enchanted Christmas will be held from November 29th to December 22nd on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 4pm until 9pm.
The National Trust has some truly spectacular buildings, and Mompesson House is one of the best in the area. This year, visit over the festive season to discover a Victorian Christmas.
It’s a great place to visit at any time of the year, but over the festive period this beautiful townhouse will be decorated for Christmas in Victorian style on the ground floor, taking inspiration from the diaries of Jinny Townsend. Enjoy Christmas trees, festive food displays, gifts and more.
It is open from November 23rd to December 22nd on Thursdays to Sundays from 11am to 3.30pm, and standard admission charges apply.
If you’re prepared to go a little bit further, Salisbury is about an hour’s drive away. There is lots going on here over Christmas, but one of the best events will be the switching on of the Christmas lights.
The event will take place on November 21st from 6pm until 8pm, and you will enjoy fireworks, music, entertainment, food on sale and lots of fun and festivity. It’s the best way to get the Christmas season off to a great start.
Also, don’t miss the Christmas Fayre in Salisbury from November 30th until December 24th in Guildhall Square.
There is lots more to see and do in the surrounding area during your winter trip (here are just a few of the festive things to do in Salisbury).
Finally, you won’t want to miss the nearby Hartley Farm Christmas Market. Located just a short journey from Bowood, this one-off event on November 30th is held from 10am until 4pm and you will find festive music, carols and lots of tasty food including mince pies and mulled wine.
Whatever you do during your visit, we look forward to seeing you over the festive season!
If you are a member or guest of Bowood, then you’ll be all too familiar with our efforts to really get to know those who walk through our doors.
It’s true. We share more than just our magnificent location with all who visit. We care about our guests and aim to establish long-standing relationships with all of them.
We keep no secrets.
That said, there are still lots of remarkable things to discover about Bowood that you don’t yet know about.
Here we unveil 10 facts you didn’t know about Bowood that simply add to the charm of the hotel. Read on to find out about them:
Those guests or members who have checked in to one of our hotel bedrooms maybe already be aware that every elements of their room has been handpicked by Lady Lansdowne, an established interior designer.
Many of the patterns on the upholstery and curtains has been taken from textiles and artwork which can be found at Bowood’s Eighteenth Century Country House & Gardens in the otherside of the Estate.
Bowood is a historical and artistic gemstone. There is so much culture and heritage in our hotel, it is hard to see it all in just one visit.
The artwork is definitely a priority sight.
Our in-house curator ensures guests know all there is to discover about Bowood’s original artwork.
A couple of pieces to take a look at are:
a. The Portrait of the 5th Marquess of Lansdowne. It is a three-quarter-length image of Marquess who is seated and wearing black morning dress combined with red Academic robes.The portrait is signed, inscribed and dated ‘H Riviere 1900./ Head copied from unfinished/ portrait head by Frank Holl’ . By Henri Rivière (1864-1951). 1900.
Henry, the 5th Marquess of Lansdowne was intellectual and had an important political career. This is apparent from the painting from his academic attire. Described by Queen Victoria as “very clever and amiable”, the portrait is a reflection of his significant political posts, including Governor-General of Canada which he was appointed for in 1883 and the Secretary of State for War (1895-1900).
b. A series of paintings by James Morrison in The Library from 1990/1991 showing Tullybeagles – the Lansdowne Scottish house.
c. A modern oil copy of Kitty Fisher by Sir Joshua Reynolds. Reynolds was (still is) one of the most famous British portrait painters. Kitty Fisher was a famous mistress of famous and wealthy men. She was famous, not for talent, but for simply being a beautiful courtesan.
d. An engraving of Margaret Mercer Elphinstone, by Charles Turner. Margaret was a very close friend of Princess Charlotte and Lord Byron. Her daughter married the 4th Marquess.
e. A bronze bust of the 1st Marquess of Lansdowne by Kevin Gannon, located in the bar.
HRH Duchess of Cornwall cut the ribbon and unveiled a plaque when the hotel was opened 10 years ago. As a member of the Royal Family, wife of Prince Charles, it was a pleasure to welcome The Duchess on our opening day, only a decade ago.
Bowood pride ourselves on being kind to the environment. The hotel’s central heating is powered by a biomass burner. The wood chippings used to power the burner are scrap wood sourced from the Estate Forestry.
It is not surprising with our romantic suites and beautiful setting that many couples choose to start their married life at the hotel. In fact, over 400 couples have got married at Bowood.
The number of wild deer roaming freely around the estate is vast. They can be seen in herds, grazing and relaxing on the Academy golf course from pretty much every window on the south-facing side of the hotel.
Visitors from the London area who spend time at Richmond Park will definitely feel at home around the Deer at our hotel.
Guests often admire these elegant creatures and feel they add to Bowood’s unique ambiance…
Many years ago, the Estate builders used to dig clay from a pit on the left hand side of the second golf hole to make bricks to build cottages on the estate. The woods where the builders dug this clay are now called Brick Kiln. Some of the cottages are now home to some of the hotel team members including our General Manager.
We have a thriving population of brown hares on the golf course.If you ever pay the hotel a visit, why not follow the public footpath and go ‘form-finding’?
In January 1841, Isambard Kingdom Brunel completed the London to Chippenham section of the Great Western Railway. From then on, the Third Marquess of Lansdowne travelled to and from London by train. Before this railway was built, the main entrance to the estate was from the east, through Pillars Lodge.
On completion of the railway, Lord Lansdowne commissioned Sir Charles Barry, architect of the Houses of Parliament, to build a new lodge on the western perimeter of the park at the point closest to Chippenham station. In the centre of these gates, which you enter through today, are the gold crossed L’s. The name “Golden Gates” was, as a result, an obvious choice.
107,857 people have stayed in a double room at the hotel and 35,952 guests have stayed in a single room. That’s 143,809 guests in total.
If you would like to join the thousands of guests who have stayed in the hotel, then book a room on our website. And we look forward to welcoming you.