Short Stay: Homewood Hotel and Spa, Bath, UK

Homewood, in ten bucolic acres of lawns and soaring trees, brings relaxed but stylish Mediterranean living to the rural village of Freshford: palms, olive trees in deep terracotta planters, Goddess sculptures and modernist art. It’s a sensuous taste of the Côte d’Azur slotted between the rivers Avon and Frome. The Mediterranean theme is apt, given that Bath, with its rich Roman heritage, is just five miles north.

Portions of the Cotswold honey-coloured house possibly date back to a 13th century Carthusian monastery, with Georgian and Victorian extensions added through the ages. Homewood is a bold contemporary celebration of eclectic style, particularly in a dining room of a dozen different chandeliers, lighting 1978 moody black-and-white photographic portraits of Peter Gabriel, a local prog rock star.

Reception is a veritable museum of clocks, over 40 of them drifting seamlessly into a gallery of 1940s Picture Post covers featuring icons of

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