A spa in the home is the ultimate in luxury city living

Timothy Barber
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IN the past a health club was where you went to get pampered, a spa was a resort with natural springs and “wellness” was a hippy concept. Now that we’re both more health-conscious and luxe-conscious, however, spa facilities – meaning pools, treatment rooms, gyms, saunas, steam rooms and more – are a part of people’s everyday lives. Increasingly, they’re a part of our living arrangements too.

At the top end of the market, private designer pools along with saunas, steam rooms and private gyms are ever more fashionable. Belgravia, Knightsbrige and Mayfair are heaving with basement pools and therapists trotting from one home treatment room to another. After all, if you’re spending several million quid on a home, why not include the luxury of being able to flop straight into your own pool?

This holds true for high-end developments too. The Lancasters, a series of grand Georgian homes near Lancaster Gate that are being converted into 77 luxury apartments, includes a swimming pool, steam room and treatment rooms for residents to use. Even at the more affordable end, modern serviced apartments with gyms and pools have obvious benefits.

“A lot of people will cross a place off their list if it doesn’t have the facilities they want,” says Carl Davenport of estate agents Chesterton Humberts. “It used to be parking, portering and outside space, but now you can add a gym and spa to that too.”

Just as office developments include such facilities to raise the quality of people’s working lives and help companies retain staff, so property developers are seeing them as key to drawing in customers. You may pay a bit of extra service charge, but the convenience of facilities in your own building – not to mention savings on gym membership – makes all the difference.

Price: £9.25m
An uber-stylish house with a double-height swimming pool, private gym and a cinema.
Call Knight Frank on 020 7938 4311.

Price: £18m
A four-bedroom house in a luxury developments with its own, very swish indeed, pool.
Call?Knight Frank on 020 7938 4311.

Price: £749,950
A two-bedroom flat in a Thameside development with on-site gym and spa facilities.
Call Chesterton Humberts on 020 7357 7999.

Price: from £6m
A swanky new development opening next year with pool, treatment rooms, sauna and steam room.
Call Hamptons International on 020 7402 8822 or visit www.thelancastershydepark.com