Multi-million-pound plan for spa at historic Plymouth hotel
MULTI-MILLION-POUND plans to create one of the country's top spa getaways have been unveiled.
Plympton's historic Boringdon Hall Hotel would get a dazzling new luxury spa, gym and pampering centre under plans revealed today.
Twelve bespoke treatment rooms, an indoor pool, gym, jacuzzis and a 'spatisserie' café with views over Dartmoor would be housed in a brand new three-storey building set into a hillside at the plush estate.
Owner James Nettleton said the ambitious project, set to cost between £4million and £5million, would create up to 50 jobs and secure the hotel's long-term future.
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He told The Herald: "We want it to be recognised as one of the best spas in the country."
Plans drawn up by the city-based Architects Design Group have just been submitted to Plymouth City Council. A decision is due in mid-November and work could begin next year, with the new facility opening its doors in 2014.
The proposed 1,610sqm building is earmarked for former farmland to the rear of the Grade I-listed Boringdon Hall buildings.
Access from the Tudor-era hotel building would be via a revamped reception area.
The first floor would house the main spa entrance, changing rooms, treatment rooms, a swimming pool and gym. Above, at roof level, would be the spatisserie and an outdoors dining terrace boasting views over the moors and Plym Valley.
"We're looking to do something special here," Mr Nettleton said. "Everything is going to be purpose-built.
"We want to create an exclusive destination for the area. This place should be seen as an iconic, unique building – and to really make it live up to that potential we need to give it an edge over anything else.
"We believe there are no other spas in this area offering what we would be offering.
"There's an awful lot of potential here. We're very excited."
The family-run Nettleton Group, which already owns a successful spa and two hotels in Newquay, bought Boringdon out of administration last year in a deal reported to have cost around £2million.
More than £1million has since been spent on giving the 40-room, four-star hotel a facelift – and bookings are up 62 per cent year-on-year.
"The spa is what's really going to secure its future," added Mr Nettleton. "But we want to protect the character of Boringdon itself."
English Heritage has been involved in pre-application talks over the proposed building, which would be barely visible from a new approach into the estate. Landscaping could include creating a pond outside the hall's main entrance and relocating the car park.
BORINGDON HALL: history
Boringdon takes its name from the Saxon "Burth-Y-Don", meaning "enchanted place on the hill".
957-975 AD: King Edgar grants the Manor of Boringdon to St Peter of Plimpton
1086: Settlement, part of Plympton Priory, included in the Domesday Book
1539: Becomes property of the crown after Henry VIII's dissolution of the monasteries
1553: Sold to Richard Mayhew of Tavistock
1580s: Guests at the manor include Sir Walter Raleigh and HRH Queen Elizabeth
1660: Boringdon returned to Parker family, which had inherited the estate, after being confiscated during the Civil War
1743: Parker family moves to Saltram and Boringdon goes into decline, becoming a farmhouse
1800s: North wing demolished and gateposts relocated to other houses in Plymouth
1920: Estate falls into disrepair and is soon sold by Parkers
1986: Huge rebuilding project to turn Boringdon into a hotel after several owners, including the National Trust, fail to prevent buildings from crumbling
1989: Hall destroyed by fire and has to be renovated again
2004: Ex-Argyle player Paul Chapman buys estate, initially with hotelier Joseph Louei
2011: Business bought out of administration by Nettleton Holdings