Bristol has many hidden wonders from the secret bars scattered throughout the city to the many wonderful little side streets that aren’t on the tourist map but offer a different view of the stunning city. One of my most recent hidden finds The Bristol Lido has actually been a huge Bristol favourite for many many years I just hadn’t experienced it yet. Somewhat behind the times. The Bristol Lido is a huge must if you live in or around Bristol or if find yourself travelling to this city.
So what is the Bristol Lido? Well, it’s many things- but I think how it’s summed up on their website ‘an Urban Retreat’ has it spot on. With a bar, restaurant, pool, hot tub, sauna, spa treatments and quirky changing rooms all housed within a walled area it’s like a little piece of paradise hidden away in the city.
It was or is a Victorian swimming pool that dates back to the 1850s however over the years it’s been closed and opened and swapped hands over and over again. Although it’s modernised now it still really has so much history and charm retained.
The Lido is located down a very unassuming street and from the outside, you wouldn’t know what was behind the door and this only adds to its appeal. You can visit the restaurant and bar without having to swim and relax but you get the joys of the views. If you are local there are memberships available or if you are just wanting to visit on occasion there is day passes available. The package we went for was a spa day package. It was a birthday and Christmas present to each of us all rolled into one so we went all out on the treat. Included in our package we had breakfast, lunch (all non-alcoholic drinks included), 2 spa treatments and full use of all the facilities it was at the higher end of spa packages at £150 per head but it was a girly treat day and something we had wanted to do for a little while so it was ok to splash out.
It was the best treat day and just one of those experiences I regret leaving so long to do.
The food is raved about and whilst I have been known at times to be a picky eater I was pleasantly surprised by what they had on offer. It was locally sourced well-planned food and although in the luxurious environment you didn’t once feel at all like it was pretentious. I mean we were sitting in our robes with wet hair while the table next to us were dressed like people should be in the day. The relaxed environment filters into every part of the Lido.
The two spa treatments we had were a full body massage and a facial. The spa treatments are located upstairs and there is a waiting room, changing room and boudoir to get yourself dressed after. The treatments were amazing and embarrassingly to add I was so relaxed I even fell asleep in my facial. cue to awkward snoring! There were professional but personable and just made you feel so at ease. I really liked the wind-down room they take you to after your treatment were you can recline on the sofa and enjoy a fruit tea.
In between our treatments, we tried out the other facilities which included the sauna, hot tub and open-air pool. We visited on a brisk November day so it wasn’t as busy as what I would imagine it to be in the summer but there was still a fair few people. The hot tub was probably a little small for the number of people able to visit the Lido but we managed to squeeze in comfortably. The pool claimed to be 22 degrees and as although when I dipped my toe in it almost fell off due to frostbite there was NO way I wasn’t getting into the pool so I braved it and jumped in did 3 lengths and got straight back out. You can’t visit it a pool as glorious of this and not get in.
The Lido should be a must on any itinerary to Bristol even if it’s just to sample the food at the restaurant or to view the beautiful decor. There aren’t many places in a city where you get the feeling of escapism that Lido offers and regardless of what season you visit you will be glad you got there. And trust me no matter how cold it is, take a dip in the pool.
For more information check out their link below