Just when you thought the Yorkshire Dales couldn’t get anymore idyllic, the highest pub in Britain – Tan Hill Inn – has confirmed plans to open a spa and open-air pool on their Swaledale premises.
The move is in a bid to attract more visitors, after suggestions from cyclists and walkers for the pub to provide salt baths for guests (since, you know, it’s a steep walk…).
The 500-year-old pub plans to utilise un-used land behind the pub premises, which will be transformed into an “Icelandic” style spa with rustic features, including an open-air pool, sauna and hot tubs. What better way to relax your legs after a long and probably pretty strenuous walk?
Speaking of the decision to expand, owner Andrew Hills said:
“The next stage for us is to replace the ugly, disused areas behind the pub and bring them into use. We’ve had a massive increase in cyclists and Pennine Way walkers coming to us, and we meet their beer and food needs, but we want them to be able to relax even more. We started getting cyclists asking us for salt baths!”
“Ninety-nine per cent of our customers are supportive of our plans. We want to maintain the rustic, earthy feel, so we’ve had plans drawn up for a low-lying plunge pool that’s partially enclosed. It will be beautiful in summer but can also be used when the snow is here, which will increase our winter occupancy. It’s going to have an intimate feel.”
Continuing: “We’re adding an extension to the back with room for a bigger kitchen, as we serve 300 meals a day now, a beer cellar and changing rooms for the spa. The micro-observatory will be on the roof. There will also be three new guest rooms with floor-to-ceiling windows and balconies.”
The Bradford businessman and his partner purchased the pub back in 2018, and have executed a number of improvements to the premises since taking ownership.
The developments are set to also see the pub undergo a kitchen extension to maximise their offerings (and fulfil potential increased demand), build a star-gazing conservatory (perfect for chilling with a cheeky gin!), as well as a rooftop micro-observatory to help you take in the surroundings, and a grotto spa!
The spa will be available to use for guests staying over, and there’ll also be day passes available for those who just want to pop in and use the facilities. The developments are expected to take around two years, and will see the pub fully maximise its tourism potential in one of the most beautiful destinations Yorkshire has to offer.
In addition to the spa development, the pub and hotel has also taken the opportunity to upgrade their rooms during the lockdown periods, adding stunning brass free-standing tubs and luxury finishes to the rooms. The pub is also offering ‘dome dining’ in your very own dome overlooking the surrounding countryside, allowing customers to social distance safely once they re-open.
The Tan Hill Inn currently stands as the UK’s highest pub at 1732ft above sea level and offers camping, glamping and traditional accommodation – and it can be frequently spotted on ITV show Vera!
[Featured image: The Tan Hill Inn]