Close to Chester’s boutiques, bars and bistros sits an equally well-heeled establishment. Nova Spa, built on the bounty of the late-90s dot-com boom, sleeps 12 party guests or family members, but this villa is much more than the sum of its bricks, mortar, fixtures and fittings. It’s an experience all by itself.
At the heart of the exuberant extravagance is a full-on spa experience, with a 24-foot indoor pool heated to a toasty 34 degrees, with the fibre-optic ceiling above mimicking the night sky. From here, life flows freely to the Jacuzzi and sauna, thence to the champagne bar that gleams invitingly in neon at one end of the pool.
Elsewhere, the open-plan opulence of the living room comes bedecked with Sky, BT Sports and BT Infinity wifi. There’s a TV in every room, an en-suite master bedroom, a wet room, a raised terrace and dining for ten, indoors and out. This is a palace that knows how to party. It offers more mischief than a cartload of caffeinated monkeys.
If you can bear to leave the toys and games inside, Nova Spa comes with a few more outside. Try a little table tennis on the terrace or hit the lawn for some five-a-side footy with a goal at each end.
Get the barbie loaded with steak and sausages and pile round the ten-seater terrace table. Sleep off the excess on the loungers in the sunshine.
The open-plan living area is fun enough, with its vaulted ceiling, fibre-optic stars, tiled floors, leather sofas, pool table and large-screen TV. Fast BT wifi floods the spaces and your soundtrack sings out from iPod docks. But probe further, and it all just gets better, with facilities befitting a five-star spa resort in Vegas or Monte Carlo.
The indoor swim-spa, heated to 34 degrees, sits centre stage. In and around, up and down sparkling-glass staircases, you’ll find air hockey, arcade games with 250 old-school classics, and state-of-the-art gym. Towel off and hit the funky neon-lit bar for a cocktail or drop of champagne.
Fancy a movie? The cinema room with HD projector accommodates ten on three banked sofas in front of an eight-foot screen. It’s as epic for Blu-ray as it is for late-night boxing or catching today’s match. Sky, BT Internet TV and Netflix are yours at the push of a button. Prep the popcorn and pick from over 300 channels.
Is there a sauna? Of course there’s a sauna. This is a full-on spa. With that in mind, pack in a little pampering. Maybe an Indian Head Massage, a mini manicure or pedicure, an aromatherapy full-body massage or a luxury facial. Fill in a little more time with bar football, virtual-reality car racing and the Xbox.
The kitchen gleams and glimmers in its spot-lit splendour, the fridge needs its own postcode and the pool table sits just the other side of the island unit, ready for you to pot some balls while you wait for the dough to rise. Be quick, though: you’ll need to convert it into a ten-seater dining table in time for tea.
Cook using two ovens, a built-in microwave and the six-ring induction hob, or hang it all and call in The Willow Tree Café for a range of delicious sandwiches, pasta dishes, salad platter or homemade chilli con carne, curry and stews. While away your time in the pool while our chefs pull their whites on.
Alternatively, fire up the coal barbie and eat al fresco out on the terrace with seating for ten and a view of the trees and fields beyond. There’s a dishwasher for when everything’s done, and a coffee machine caps a civilised time all round. Or find hearty, pubby meals in Frodsham at Helter Skelter, Queen’s Head and Bear’s Paw.
Restaurants abound. Head to Amore in Frodsham for Italian classics served in a modern first-floor restaurant with a choice of lively, late-night bars. Netherton Hall comes with roaring fires, cask ales and a homely menu peppered with classics such as slow-braised lamb stew, Cumberland sausage and mash, and ratatouille.
Bedrooms come with warm, shaggy carpets, underfloor heating and TVs tuned to Sky and BT Internet TV. Bathrooms and en-suites are granite-topped sumptuous affairs. These are bedrooms befitting the spa resort where you invite your own guests.
The master bedroom is a superking sleeping two with a delicious en-suite. Bedroom two offers a kingsize bed that can be split into two singles. The en-suite wet room is the kind of place you’ll want to linger.
Bedroom three provides two single beds and a shared bathroom, while bedroom four is a double, also with a shared bathroom. On the ground floor, bedroom five can be a double or two singles with a shared bathroom. At night, the sound of the open fields to the rear of the house is deafening.