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Vale Resort

Hensol Park, Hensol, Pontyclun, Vale Of Glamorgan, CF72 8JY Show on Map Add to shortlist
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Christmas parties are in full swing at the Vale Resort
20/09/2018
The Vale Resort revamps conference facilities
06/05/2016
Glamorgan CCC signs partnership deal with leading Welsh resort
08/04/2016
Glamorgan County Cricket Club and The Vale Resort have signed a new, mutually beneficial, three-year partnership deal which means the exclusive sport resort will become the club’s official hotel partner.

Glamorgan County Cricket Club and The Vale Resort have signed a new, mutually beneficial, three-year partnership deal which means the exclusive sport resort will become the club’s official hotel partner.

As well as the joint marketing opportunities that the partnership will offer, The Vale Resort will extend its hospitality to visiting international and county teams in need of accommodation when they play at the SSE SWALEC Stadium. One of the first teams to benefit from the deal, Kent County Cricket Club, will stay at the resort during its five-day match against Glamorgan County Cricket Club in June.

Paul Beddoe, sales and marketing director at The Vale Resort, said: “The Vale Resort is already the official hotel and training venue for the Welsh Rugby Union and training venue for the Football Association of Wales, as well as home to Cardiff City Football Club and Cardiff Blues.

“A relationship with Glamorgan County Cricket Club is something that we have been keen on developing for some time and is the next natural step for us, very much adding to our position of attracting professional sports teams and providing world class sporting facilities.

“The current set up within Glamorgan is exciting and dynamic, and we are delighted to be working alongside such a professional team, providing a first-class service to match their first-class performance."

Hugh Morris, chief executive and director of cricket at Glamorgan CCC, said: “With The Vale Resort’s reputation so closely tied to sporting and hospitality excellence, this partnership seemed a perfect fit. When teams and supporters visit The SSE SWALEC we pride ourselves on the warm welcome that they receive and we know that this an ethos shared by The Vale.

“We look forward to building on our existing relationship and enjoying a successful partnership going forward.”
Hensol Castle welcomes guests to VIP launch
14/07/2015
Newly opened conference and wedding venue, Hensol Castle, welcomed guests to an official corporate launch on 23 June 2015, showcasing the recently refurbished venue in the grounds of the 4-star Vale Resort.

Guests of the VIP launch enjoyed an evening of musical entertainment, a ‘Wines of the World’ tasting experience, courtesy of Fine Wines Direct, and an exclusive Q and A session with Wales rugby coach, Warren Gatland and former Welsh international footballer, Craig Bellamy.

The 400 year-old Grade I listed castle has undergone a multi-million pound refurbishment and reopened as a first-class venue in May this year. The first phase of the £10 million programme included a complete upgrade of five function rooms and the construction of a new, purpose-built Courtyard Hall.

Courtyard Hall is capable of accommodating 320 delegates theatre-style and 200 banquet-style. This is complemented by the five smaller meeting rooms in the castle itself, which can host between 10-100 delegates per room theatre-style. Phase two of the refurbishment will include adding up to 30 bedrooms and a high-end restaurant serving 120 covers, and is expected to be open by late 2016.

“The redevelopment of Hensol Castle has been one of the most important investments the Vale Resort has made to further strengthen our corporate and meeting facilities.” said Stephen Leeke, managing director of the Vale Resort.

“It was fantastic to welcome guests to our official launch and we are looking forward to a busy programme of conferences and weddings, as well as planning ahead for the next phase of this exciting project.”
Minister officially opens historic Hensol Castle
21/05/2015
The Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism, Ken Skates, officially opened Hensol Castle today (20 May), following a multi-million pound refurbishment programme to restore the historic castle to its former glory.

Unveiling a commemorative plaque to mark the official opening of Hensol Castle, Mr Skates was given a tour of the 400-year-old Grade I listed building, which is reopening to the public as a conference and wedding venue after the completion of the first phase of its £10 million refurbishment.
Located within the grounds of the Vale Resort, Hensol Castle offers conference facilities in the new purpose-built Courtyard Hall, capable of hosting 320 delegates theatre-style and 200 delegates banquet-style.

The facilities at Courtyard Hall are complemented by five smaller meeting rooms in the castle itself, which have been completely upgraded and can host between 10-100 delegates per room theatre-style. Phase two of the £10 million investment will include adding up to 30 bedrooms and a top-end restaurant with 120 covers, and is expected to be open by late 2016.

The official opening of Hensol Castle coincides with figures from the International Passenger Survey, undertaken by the Office for National Statistics and issued today (20 May), which shows that international visitors to Wales increased by more than 7% in 2014.
Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism, Ken Skates, said: “Hensol Castle gives the Vale Resort something very unique to offer their business and wedding clients. It is a high quality development which makes the most of the site’s heritage and culture giving its clients a top end experience and giving a piece of the area’s heritage a new lease of life. I wish the team every success with this new development. ”

During his visit, the minister also saw the Welsh Rugby Union’s on-site facilities at the Vale Resort, including its five rugby training pitches.
The Vale Resort is gearing up to host some of the world’s most famous rugby teams this autumn, including Wales and France, plus a quarter-final knock-out team which could be any combination of France, Ireland, New Zealand and Italy, as it has been selected as an official team base for the 2015 Ruby World Cup.
As part of its preparation, the Vale Resort has invested £1 million in upgrading its 143-bedrooms, including installing new bathrooms together with upgrading soft furnishings, taking the total investment at the resort within the last year to £11 million.
Stephen Leeke, managing director of the Vale Resort, said: “We were delighted that Deputy Minister, Ken Skates, could take time out of his busy schedule to officially open Hensol Castle and be one of the first to see the refurbishment.

“The redevelopment of the castle has been one of the most important investments the Vale Resort has made to further strengthen its facilities. The historic castle adds another string to our bow by providing an alternative option from our current contemporary offering at the Vale Resort. Event organisers can now choose from two very different venues that offer a combined total of 18 conference and meeting suites.
“With the conference and event market an important revenue stream for the Vale Resort, currently representing 25% of our business, we anticipate significant growth in this sector on the back of reopening such a unique facility in south Wales. Since announcing the new refurbishment, we’ve already had interest from world-recognised businesses such as British Gas, Princes Gate, the Royal Mint and a number of medical and pharmaceutical companies.”

Dating back to the 17th century, Hensol Castle is steeped in history. Its previous owners include Samuel Richardson, who is credited with introducing the threshing machine to the world of agriculture and “Big Ben”, Sir Benjamin Hall, who was overseer of works for the installation of the clock tower at the Houses of Parliament, which is apparently named after him. The estate was purchased by the Leekes family, who own the Vale Resort, in 2003.

Hensol Castle had been closed to the public for almost a decade until 2014, when it was opened for weddings for the first time. Until then, it had only been used as a stage set for the television series Doctor Who, Sherlock Holmes and Torchwood.
New Historic venue for 2015
11/02/2015
Steph pioneers new beauty apprenticeship for spa workers in Wales
26/11/2014
Pioneering teenager Steph Symonds has made history by becoming the first learner to complete an apprenticeship specifically tailor-made for spa workers.

The 17-year-old from Rhoose, near Cardiff completed the 5 Star Beauty Apprenticeship Programme at the Vale Resorts Spa, Hensol in the Vale of Glamorgan, two months ahead of schedule and has been offered a full-time post as a qualified therapist.

The apprenticeship, which is supported by the Welsh Government, was designed for Vale Resorts Spa by Bridgend-based ISA Training, the largest, independent hairdressing and beauty training provider in Wales. It responds to the specific training and business needs of prestige hotel spas in Wales.

Within the first 12 weeks, apprentices focus on body massage treatments and spa customer service to ensure that they are able to generate income for the business from an early stage.

Steph left school at 16 with 11 GCSEs to her name and jumped at the chance to start work as an apprentice at the Vale Resorts Spa, the biggest spa in Wales with 19 treatment rooms. She has impressed with her professionalism at such a young age in an adult environment.

She completed a Foundation Apprenticeship in Beauty Therapy General, comprising tinting, make-up, waxing, facials, manicures, pedicures and massage, before progressing immediately to an Apprenticeship in Beauty Therapy Massage, comprising Indian head massage, hot stone massage and spray tanning.

She is now qualified to give a wide range of treatments and has also completed a unit, which contributes to the financial effectiveness of the business. Aiming to continue to enhance her skills by taking individual courses, she is excited about her spa career prospects.

At the Vale Resorts Spa, she frequently gives treatments to famous guests, including international rugby and football stars.

“It feels very good to have become the first learner to complete this pioneering apprenticeship and I would definitely recommend it to anyone seeking a career in the spa beauty industry,” said Steph.

“An apprenticeship is much better than going to college because it provides a way into the industry and you earn while you learn in the workplace. I chose this career because the beauty industry is massive and there will always be opportunities as people like to have treatments.”

Her mentor, Debbie Searle, Vale Resorts Spa operations manager, said: “I am very proud of Steph’s achievement and the way she has matured over the past 18 months. She has shown total dedication and some adults couldn’t cope with the amount of work she has taken on.

“She is now a professional therapist with her own customers and has the potential to become a future manager. She could not have been trained in a better environment.

“The 5 Star Beauty Apprenticeship has worked tremendously well, as it has been tailor-made to the needs of the business and we hope to take on another two apprentices by January.”

Clare Jeffries, ISA Training’s head of apprenticeships, said: “The pilot programme has been very successful. Previously the spa was taking on college leavers and having to retrain them their way.

“The apprenticeship is designed in such a way that the apprentices are able to start working as therapists within three months and are fully competent by the end of the programme.

“Steph has been totally dedicated to her training and development and the standard of her work is fantastic. She had excellent support from her parents in the initial stages of the apprenticeship which is really important.”

The vale Resort Offer for Rugby Fans
09/09/2014
Vale Resort unveils a fairytale wedding venue
31/01/2014
A historic castle in south Wales is reopening as a wedding venue for the 2014 season, following the first phase of a multi-million pound refurbishment to restore it to its former glory.

Hensol Castle has been closed to the public for almost a decade and only used as a stage set for the television series Doctor Who, Sherlock and Torchwood. However, thanks to the investment, it will be open as a wedding venue from April 2014 catering for wedding parties of up to 180 guests, who can hire it exclusively.

The revamped venue, which will hold a wedding licence, consists of four ceremony and reception rooms, together with a marquee in the central courtyard.

Located in Hensol Park, next door to the Vale Resort, the 400-year old castle has original architecture, turrets, gothic towers and feature staircases. The castles restoration is in keeping with its 17th century heritage in gothic style, and all of the conference suites are named after previous famous owners of the castle.

The former stately home, situated six miles outside of Cardiff city centre and three minutes off junction 34 of the M4, is set within landscaped gardens and has a 15-acre lake and serpentine pond.

Paul Beddoe, sales and marketing director of the Vale Resort, said: “Hensol Castle really is a unique place and a must-see for any bride and groom. Not only will they have an idyllic setting to create their picture-perfect day, but they will also be looked after by a team of experts who are experienced in delivering the highest standards of wedding service.

“The real selling point for Hensol Castle is that it can be hired exclusively, which makes it highly attractive for brides and grooms who like to have an intimate celebration just for them and their guests.

“All clients will get the red carpet treatment from start to finish, and as a thank you for choosing Hensol Castle we have included a number of extras to all wedding packages”.
The wedding package at Hensol Castle includes the following as standard:

- Luxurious suite for the Bride and Groom
- Red carpet on arrival
- Personalised menus
- Silver cake stand and knife
- Preferential room rates for guests
- 20% off treatments in the spa (one month prior to your wedding)
- Free anniversary dinner
- Free three month’s free membership of the Health & Racquets Club (one month prior to your wedding)
- Free round of golf for the groom and 3 friends (prior to your wedding)
- Free car parking

There have only been four private family weddings of the owners at the venue to date and it has spent the last eight years of its life as an evocative backdrop to BBC dramas including Doctor Who, Sherlock Holmes and Torchwood.

Paul Beddoe continued: "The investment into the careful restoration and refurbishment at Hensol Castle is something we are very proud of. It’s like stepping back in time when you visit the Castle. The quaint courtyard is perfect for an intimate drinks reception, and the wooden jetty stretching into our stunning lake is a stand-out spot for some striking photos.

“At the Vale Resort, we have an established reputation for our existing wedding facilities in a contemporary setting. Hensol Castle now gives us another string to our bow and a totally different wedding proposition, catering for those who like a little bit of history.”

Formally known as Hensol House, the estate was purchased by the family-owned retail company Leekes in 2003 and is being developed as part of the Vale Resort’s hotel, conference and weddings offering.

Dating back to the 17th century, this Grade I listed castle is steeped in history. Its previous owners include Samuel Richardson, who is credited with introducing the threshing machine to world of agriculture, and Benjamin Hall who oversaw the construction of the clock tower at the Houses of Parliament.

Phase two of the investment will include adding 50 bedrooms. Currently, guests can stay at the adjacent Vale Resort, which comprises a 143-bed luxury four-star hotel, two championship golf courses, Wales’ largest spa, an extensive health and racquets club including a large gymnasium, pool, sauna and steam room.

Wedding menus at Hensol Castle start from £50pp. For further information about holding a wedding at Hensol Castle, please contact 01443 665803 or email sales@vale-hotel.com
VALE RESORT TEAMS UP WITH AWARD-WINNING CHEF ANAND GEORGE
11/09/2013
The Vale Resort has teamed up with one of the brightest lights on the Welsh culinary scene, the multi-award winning Chef Anand George.

Under the collaboration, the Kerala-born founder of Purple Poppadom restaurant in Cardiff, will now be offering a specialist Indian wedding menu service at the Resort.

Renowned for his pioneering Nouvelle Indian Cuisine, Anand George will also be hosting an ongoing programme of pop-up-restaurants at the Vale Resort, commencing November 15th 2013.

Winner of the famous House of Commons Tiffin Cup, the Welsh Curry House of the Year and South Wales Echo Food & Drink Awards, Anand George will be presenting evenings of fine Indian cuisine dining in the Vale Resort’s La Cucina restaurant at the Golf Club.

Through its new association, The Vale Resort aims to expand its current Indian Wedding offering, with the capacity to host celebrations for over 400 guests, as well as providing something different for residents and diners through the pop-up restaurants.
A wide range of menus have been specially created by Chef George, including traditional and contemporary Indian cuisine as well as complete vegetarian menu option.

Chef Anand George, whose Cardiff eatery has just been named one of the UK's top restaurants, in the Waitrose Good Food Guide 2014 said:
“We are very excited to be working with a hotel of the quality and reputation of the Vale Resort. Having commenced my culinary career in many of the five star luxury hotels in India, I am confident that we can bring a higher level of cuisine to the traditional hotel-based Indian wedding.

“The pop-up restaurant will also enable us to take our Nouvelle Indian Cuisine style of presentation literally out into the Vale of Glamorgan. I am looking forward to it.”

Chef Anand George is no stranger to the Vale Resort. Famed as the training base of the Welsh national rugby team, and recently the British & Irish Lions, he first demonstrated his art at an international rugby dinner at the Vale in 2011.

More recently, the Purple Poppadom patron, was one of three chefs providing their cuisine for an all-star testimonial ‘Taste of Wales’ dinner for Welsh rugby legend Ryan Jones, in March.

The Vale Resort is a four-star resort that is located in 650 acres of Welsh countryside in Hensol, The pop-up restaurants will complement the existing AA rosette Vale Grill that already offers fine dining to residents and visitors.

Paul Beddoe, Sales and Marketing Director of the Vale Resort, said: “We are always looking at new and innovative ways to provide something a little different to our guests and those who use our facilities.
“We have been delighted to have worked with Chef George in recent years, so bringing his wonderful cuisine into the Resort for Indian weddings as well as pop-up restaurants, was a natural progression for us.

“We are delighted to be working with Anand, who is surely one of the brightest stars not only of the Welsh, but UK culinary scene. We believe the Vale Resort now offers a compelling case as one of the foremost wedding hotel venues in Wales.”

The pop-up restaurants will take place on 15th and 16th November; 29th and 30th November and 6th and 7th December.
Father-and-son team up at Vale Resort’s Golf Academy
23/07/2013
A young Cardiff golfer has shunned the life of a tournament professional to follow in his father’s footsteps and become a teaching pro at the Vale Resort Golf Academy, near Hensol in the Vale of Glamorgan.
22-year-old Matthew Coombs, who qualified last month with a degree in Applied Golf Management from Birmingham University, joins father Clive as part of the four-strong coaching setup at the Resort, which gives individual and group lessons to members and non-members of all ages from across south Wales. His three-year degree course, which included modules on sports science, coach education and business management, was developed in partnership with the Professional Golfers Association (PGA) and involved placements at The Belfrey and the Vale Resort.
The Junior Academy at the Vale has produced a number of young golfing stars in recent years, including current European Amateur Championship Cup winner and 2013 Open qualifier Rhys Pugh. As the 142nd Open Championship gets underway at Muirfield today (18th July), the team at the Vale Resort will be following closely the fortunes of Pugh, who qualified on the back of his historic win in Ireland last year.
Playing a part in developing local talent like Rhys has been one of the key motivations for Matthew who, according to father Clive, has already developed his own distinct teaching style;
“Matthew has always had an excellent temperament on the golf course,” said the Vale Resort’s golf manager. “While this is important in competitive golf, it’s a vital attribute to bring into a coaching career and hopefully it will serve him well. It is great to see how some of our younger golfers identify with him during the coaching sessions too and I’m sure we’ll see that reflected in the progress they make in the future.”
Matthew, meanwhile, is looking forward to getting stuck into his new role as a full-time teaching pro and putting some of his studies into practice;
“The PGA degree course has been a fantasic experience for me and has really launched my career as a teaching pro,” said Matthew. “The Vale Resort already has a great reputation for coaching juniors but we are always looking to develop new programmes that are tailored to different types of golfers, from complete beginners to ladies, or even experienced players that want to improve certain areas of their game. We have also worked with some fantastic groups of disabled golfers and that is one part of the job that really excites me.”
Dad Clive, who has worked at the Vale Academy for 14 years, taking over as the Resort’s golf manager in 2007, is also excited about the prospect of having a new addition to the team;
“The training I did to become a teaching pro certainly wasn’t anything like Matthew has experienced over the last three years. His knowledge of the industry, the scientific side of things and how advances in technology have impacted on equipment and teaching methods, is just light-years ahead. He’s definitely going to be teaching his old man a few new tricks.”
As part of its commitment to supporting the golfing stars of the future, the Vale Resort offers a special Junior Golfing Package for young people aged between 8-18 years. The Resort has also just launched a new “Learn to Play” package that includes a three-month midweek membership, lessons with a teaching pro and free use of hire clubs, together with a discount annual subscription if you decide to join up.
The Vale Resort’s Junior Team is sponsored by the Principality Building Society, which is strongly committed to supporting grass roots sport in Wales.
For more information on the Junior Golf Programme, please visit www.vale-hotel.com/golf
Cracking Easter breaks at the Vale Resort
18/03/2013
The Vale Resort in Hensol is springing into action with a range of breaks for those looking to do something a little different over Easter.

The four star resort, which is located in 650 acres of historic Welsh countryside, has created an egg-cellent selection of family friendly activities, relaxing spa sessions, and golfing get-a-ways.

The Family Easter Break offers a whole range of activities to keep youngsters entertained throughout their stay, including crazy crafts, junior gym sessions, cinema nights and on Easter Sunday itself, an egg-stra special Easter Egg Hunt. Families can also take advantage of the Resort’s close proximity to some of Wales’ top tourist attractions, many of which are free of charge.

For those looking to tee-off the spring season with a challenging game of golf, the Easter Golf Break offers 36 holes of championship golf at one of Wales’ premier courses and dinner in the Vale Grill restaurant. Following their game, guests can make use full use of the Vale Resort’s extensive leisure facilities or simply relax in comfort in the clubhouse.

For food lovers, the DB&B Break offers a delicious meal in the award-winning Vale Grill, followed by a hearty Welsh breakfast the next morning. Those wanting to work off their meal can always pop down to the gym or enjoy a walk in the surrounding countryside.

If all that sounds just a little too strenuous, the Easter Spa Break might just be the answer. As well as a night’s stay, full access to the relaxation facilities at the Vale Spa and a light lunch, it also includes a 25 minute, Fresh Citrus Infusion, back and shoulder treatment. The citrus infusion of salts and oils creates an energising massage, which helps to rejuvenate, while the scent of fresh, wild lemon will help clients feel that spring really is in the air.

Stephanie Metson, marketing manager of the Vale Resort, said: “Everyone likes to indulge a little at Easter but not all of our tastes are the same.

“We have designed a range of breaks for those who want to celebrate with the family, get out and enjoy the fresh air with a game of golf, or simply want to relax and de-stress in the luxury of the spa.”

Two night family Easter Break*
·Luxury family accommodation
·Full Welsh breakfast served until 11.00am
·Up to 2 children (under 16) stay free in your family room
·Free main meal for under 12s (from the children's menu) with every adult dining in the Vale Grill
·Goody bag for each child (under 6)
·Easter egg hunt (Easter Sunday only)
·Organised daily activity for children
·Children's activity room with board games, books and free movies
·Indoor activities; swimming, squash, tennis and fitness (age restrictions apply)
·Paddle Time at White Water International*
·Outdoor activities; country walks, mountain biking*, golf*
·Near to local attractions: Museum of Welsh Life, National Museum and Gallery of Wales, Techniquest, Cardiff Castle, Caerphilly Castle, Big Pit, Rhondda Heritage Park, Dan Yr Ogof Caves, many of which are free to enter
·Full use of extensive leisure facilities
·Free parking at hotel
From £195 per room

Easter Golf Break*
·Luxury 4* accommodation
·Full Welsh breakfast
·36 holes of championship golf on either course
·Free £10 drink voucher and reduced buggy hire (selected dates)
·Dinner in the award-winning Vale Grill
·Full use of our extensive leisure facilities
·Free parking
From £99 per person


DB&B break*
·Luxury 4* accommodation
·Full Welsh breakfast
·Dinner in the award-winning Vale Grill
·Use of our extensive leisure facilities
·FREE parking
From £129 per room

Easter Spa Break*
·One night luxury accommodation
·Full Welsh breakfast
·Full access to the relaxation facilities in the Vale spa
·Fresh Citrus Infusion Back and Shoulder treatment (25 min)
·Free 25 min Elements treatment (only applicable to stays between 24th March and 14th April)
·Light lunch (special menu)
·25% off any additional pre-booked spa treatments
·Full use of our extensive leisure facilities
·Free parking
From £75 per person

*Subject to availability. Terms and conditions apply. Free £10 drinks voucher per person per stay applies to the golf break only from 17th - 30th March exc 23rd . Free elements treatment of Easter spa breaks only from 24th March – 11th April.
Get your bake-on at the Vale Resort
12/03/2013
The Vale Resort in Hensol, south Wales has whisked up a new break for budding bakers who want to make like Mary Berry and create the perfect cupcake.

The Cupcake Break combines a morning spent cooking up a storm in the kitchen learning how to bake and decorate cupcakes, combined with a luxury stay in Wales’ favourite four-star resort.

Guests will be taught everything they need to know to create perfect cupcakes every time, from mixing up a light sponge through to sugar craft and the perfect icing techniques. At the end of their stay, they will be able to take everything they make home to impress friends and family with their masterpieces.

And those whose skills aren’t quite up to the likes of Mary Berry needn’t worry as a professional tutor will be on hand to make sure that everyone ‘rises’ to the challenge.

Stephanie Metson, marketing manager of the Vale Resort, said: “Cupcakes have become increasingly popular over recent years, thanks to the trend of all things pretty and vintage.
“No celebration these days is really complete without a selection of cupcakes but what’s really impressive is being able to make them yourself.

“Our Cupcake Break is suited to people of all abilities, from experienced bakers to absolute beginners, and by the end of the session everyone will be baking, icing, piping and frosting like a true pro.

“You can come along with friends or family, or simply jump into the mix with a group of other cupcake lovers to learn some new skills in a totally relaxed and friendly environment.”

The full break is just £99 per person per night, and includes:
§ 1 night luxury accomodation
§ Full Welsh breakfast
§ Introduction to cup cake recipes, suppliers and equipment
§ Half a day hands-on cupcake making and decorating
§ Full use of the Vale Resort’s extensive leisure facilities
§ Free recipes
§ Take home everything you make on the day
§ Free parking

Children over 10 are welcome as long as they are accompanied by an adult throughout.

The Vale Resort at Hensol is in home to a 143-bed four-star hotel, two championship golf courses extensive health and racquets club including large gymnasium, pool, sauna and steam room.
Spa break and afternoon tea – perfect Mother’s Day treat
25/02/2013
The Vale Resort in Hensol has created the ideal gift for busy mums this Mother’s Day, with an extra-special break at its award-winning spa.

The four star resort, which lies in 650 acres of Welsh countryside in Hensol, is offering mums a night’s stay, a cleansing facial and use of its award-winning spa, as the ideal way to relax and de-stress. The experience is topped off by a traditional afternoon tea.

The full Mother’s Day Break is from £130* for two people and includes:

• 1 night luxury accommodation
• Full Welsh breakfast
• Full day in the spa
• 25 minute Diary Date Facial
• Afternoon Tea

Or, for just £49* per person, guests can enjoy the Mother’s Day Pampering Package which includes a Clarins aromatherapy facial, afternoon tea and a full day spent enjoying the Vale Resort’s extensive leisure facilities. As an additional treat, guests can also take advantage of 10% off all retail purchases made on the day.

On Mother’s Day itself, The Vale Resort is offering a three course Sunday carvery lunch, designed by its award-winning chefs, and served in its Castle Suite. For £27.50* per person, guests can enjoy their meal accompanied by live music from Welsh singing sensations, LaSe. Mums will also receive an extra little gift.

The Vale Resort at Hensol is Wales’ highest rated 4 star resort with a 143-bed four-star hotel, two championship golf courses extensive health and racquets club including large gymnasium, pool, sauna and steam room.

The Vale Spa is the largest in Wales and was awarded a five-bubble rating from the Good Spa Guide, the highest award of its kind. The Guide also named the Vale’s Sundari Odati massage treatment the Most Marvellous Massage in the UK at its 2012 Good Spa Awards.

The Vale Resort was named as a runner up in the Residential Spa of the Year category at the Professional Beauty Awards 2012, and has been short listed as a finalist for 2013.
The Spa underwent a £250,000 make-over and now has 19 treatment rooms offering more than 50 different treatments, four relaxation rooms, a 20m swimming pool, Jacuzzi, sauna and steam room.

For further information and to book, please contact the reservations team on +44 (0)1443 667800, or visit www.vale-hotel.com
Golden daffodil treatment and break at the Vale Resort for St David’s Day – it’s lush!
14/02/2013
Celebrate St David’s Day at the Vale Resort in Hensol, south Wales, with a ‘lush’ new treatment released especially for St David’s Day (1 March) as part of the St David’s Day break.
The four-star resort has developed a unique spa treatment that has been inspired by one of Wales’ national emblems – the golden daffodil.
Those wanting to do something to mark the Welsh patron saint day can enjoy a 55-minute invigorating full body massage using shimmering bright oil that is reflective of a host of golden daffodils. It leaves the skin feeling soft but with an iridescent golden sheen.
Clients can even make a night of it with the St David’s Day break, featuring a 25-minute Golden Daffodil back and shoulder massage, overnight accommodation, full Welsh breakfast and use of the spa and health and racquets club facilities.
Claire Caddick, spa and leisure manager at the Vale Resort, said: “St David’s Day is an important date in the Welsh calendar and people like to celebrate it in different ways.
“Seeing as St David’s Day falls on a Friday this year, we wanted to give people the chance to celebrate the national saint’s day in style with this energising treatment that we’ve developed especially for the occasion.
“The treatment is gloriously stimulating and brightening, perfect for Spring time, and leaves clients feeling like that they are fluttering in the breeze – just like a host of golden daffodils!”
The Vale Resort at Hensol is Wales’ highest rated 4 star resort with a 143-bed four-star hotel, two championship golf courses extensive health and racquets club including large gymnasium, pool, sauna and steam room.
The Vale Spa is the largest in Wales and was awarded a five-bubble rating from the Good Spa Guide, the highest award of its kind. The Guide also named the Vale’s Sundari Odati massage treatment the Most Marvellous Massage in the UK at its 2012 Good Spa Awards.

The Vale Resort was named as a runner up in the Residential Spa of the Year category at the Professional Beauty Awards 2012, and has been short listed as a finalist for 2013.
The Spa underwent a £250,000 make-over last year and now has 19 treatment rooms offering more than 50 different treatments, four relaxation rooms, a 20m swimming pool, Jacuzzi, sauna and steam room.

The St David’s Day break, featuring a 25- minute Golden Daffodil massage, is valid from 1-3 March from £69 per person.
The Golden Daffodil treatment, which comprises a full body 55-minute massage, will be valid throughout March and costs £59 weekdays and £69 on weekends. Included in the price is the treatment, lunch and full use of spa facilities throughout the day.
For further information and to book, please contact the reservations team on +44 (0)1443 667800, or visit www.vale-hotel.com
New Inch Loss for Brides-to-Be
11/01/2013
Vale Resort’s new inch-loss treatment for brides-to-be
is shaping up nicely

Wales’ largest spa at The Vale Resort in Hensol has turned to science to help brides-to-be lose last minute inches in the run up to their big day.

The award-winning spa has invested in Lipofirm Plus, a new treatment which uses a process called ultrasonic cavitation to target and destroy fat cells. The treatment leads the way when it comes to inch loss, body sculpting, cellulite removal and skin tightening, and it is not uncommon to lose between four and eight centimetres after just one treatment.

It also uses radio frequencies to firm up loose skin and stimulate collagen formation which helps to combat the signs of aging.

The treatment can be accurately targeted to areas that need attention, including calves, thighs, buttocks and arms to improve overall inch and fat loss, cellulite removal or body contouring, making it ideal for women who want to drop a dress size and look their best for their wedding photos.

It is already hugely popular across Europe where it is considered as a safe and non-invasive alternative to surgical liposuction.

Claire Caddick, spa and leisure manager at the Vale Resort, said: “I admit I was sceptical when I first heard about the treatment so I decided the only way to find out for sure if it worked was to try it for myself.

“I had a session and was shocked by the difference it made. I lost 4.5 inches from my waist in 22 minutes, then another three inches two weeks later. It hasn’t come back on and I can now get into my skinny jeans that had been languishing at the back of the wardrobe.

“I decided there and then that the treatment is perfect for our clients who are planning for their wedding and want to make sure they fit into their ideal dress and look radiant for their wedding photos. In fact, we are so confident in our new product that we’re even offering a money back guarantee!*

“In life, there are no quick fixes and at the Vale Resort, we always advise people who want to get in shape for their wedding to first and foremost eat healthily and take plenty of exercise. But these treatments can give people that extra bit of help as part of a wider healthy living regime, and are a safer alternative to surgery.”

The treatment is the latest addition to the Vale Spa which underwent a £250,000 refurbishment last year, and saw the launch of a number of exclusive new features, including four relaxation zones.

The new facilities saw the Resort awarded a five-bubble rating from the Good Spa Guide, the highest rating of its kind. The Guide also named the Vale’s Sundari Odati massage treatment the Most Marvellous Massage in the UK at its 2012 Good Spa Awards.

The Vale was named as a runner up in the Residential Spa of the Year category at the Professional Beauty Awards 2012, and has been short listed as a finalist for 2013.

The Vale Spa has 19 luxury treatment rooms, four relaxation zones, 20m swimming pool, Jacuzzi, sauna and steam room.

The Vale Resort is based in 650 acres of historic Welsh countryside, in Hensol, the Vale of Glamorgan. As well as the five-bubble spa, it offers all the facilities expected of the highest rated four-star hotel in Wales including an AA Rosette restaurant and two championship golf courses.

An hour Lipofirm Plus treatment will cost £99. To book a treatment visit
www.vale-hotel.com/Spa or call 01443 665888
Vale now official WRU corporate hospitality provider
01/11/2012
New hotel deal offers Welsh Rugby fans the ultimate match-day experience

The Vale Resort, home to the Wales Rugby Team, has been appointed as an official corporate hospitality provider by the Welsh Rugby Union.

The resort, which is set in over 650 acres of countryside in the Vale of Glamorgan, is the official hotel and training venue for the Wales Rugby Team, and will now also provide off-site corporate hospitality for Wales’ home matches during RBS 6 Nations and Autumn Internationals.

It is one of only three venues that have been authorised to offer an official corporate hospitality service by the Welsh Rugby Union, and further cements the Vale Resort’s reputation as the sporting hotel of choice in Wales.

Paul Beddoe, sales and marketing director at the Vale Resort, said: “We are delighted to be able to offer this service, and look forward to working closely with the Welsh Rugby Union.

“There’s only a few months to go now until Wales plays its next match at the Millennium Stadium and, at the Vale, we are looking forward to getting right behind them and giving them all the support they deserve!

“As the home of the Wales Rugby Team, we can offer our guests a unique and unparalleled experience. As well as enjoying all the luxury and hospitality of the Vale Resort pre and post-match, they will literally be able to cheer the team onto the bus before following them to the Millennium Stadium in a luxury coach to watch the game.”

As well as tickets and transport for the match, guests can expect to enjoy a pre-match, four course meal, and a celebrity speaker to add to the excitement of the day.

Mr Beddoe said: “We have spared no expense in ensuring that guests receive the best possible experience during their time with us, and get to enjoy match day in as much comfort as possible.”

The Vale Hotel is Wales’ highest rated four star resort and also the official hotel and training venue for Cardiff City FC and the Cardiff Blues. It is also a firm favourite with visiting teams such as Liverpool FC, Manchester United, Arsenal, Chelsea, and Blackburn Rovers, and many of the rugby teams competing in the Heineken Cup.

For information and to book please contact 01443 665803 or visit www.vale-hotel.com/rugby
Vale Resort gives the UK’s Most Marvellous Massage
02/10/2012
Wales’ largest spa at the Vale Resort in Hensol, officially gives one of the UK’s best massages according to the leading authority on spa reviews.

The Good Spa Guide named the Vale Resort the winner of the Marvellous Massage category in its Good Spa Awards 2012 for its unique Sundari Odati massage treatment.

To win this coveted title, the four-star Welsh resort beat off competition from some of the most highly rated hotels in the UK, including the five star Gleneagles in Scotland.

Anna McGrail, director of the Good Spa Guide, said: “We gave the award for Marvellous Massage to the Vale Resort because our spa reviewer practically floated home from Wales!

“The treatment room was beautiful, the Sundari products fragrant and gentle, and the therapist both skilful and informative. Everything you need to really relax.”

The Sundari Odati massage is an ayurvertic traditional Indian inspired treatment that is individually tailored to your own personality type or ‘dosha'. A dosha consultation takes place at the beginning of your treatment to determine the products to be used that most suit your requirements.

The award-winning massage begins with a foot ritual to start the relaxation process, followed by massaging the back and face, while Sundari products are applied to treat the skin. The Vale Resort is currently the only spa in Wales to use the Indian-inspired Sundari products.

Claire Caddick, Spa and Leisure Manager at the Vale Resort, said: “We are really honoured that our massages have won such a prestigious award, especially as we were up against some of the most well-known hotels and spas in the UK.

“We always work hard to offer something a little special for our clients. Not only are we the only spa in Wales to offer the Indian inspired massages, as opposed to the more conventional Thai-based treatments, but we also work directly with product houses to develop our own unique treatments.

“It is this level of skill and innovation that helps us to stand out from our competitors and keeps our customers coming back for more.”

The Vale Spa underwent a £250,000 refurbishment last year, which enabled it to launch a number of exclusive new features, such as its four relaxation zones.

The new facilities saw the Resort as a runner up in the Residential Spa of the Year category at the Professional Beauty Awards and achieving a five-bubble rating from the Good Spa Guide, the highest rating of its kind.

The Vale Spa has also opened its own funky Chai Cafe which also offers boutique shopping, complementing the Resort’s existing 19 luxury treatment rooms, four relaxation zones, 20m swimming pool, Jacuzzi sauna and steam room.

The Vale Resort is based in 650 acres of historic Welsh countryside, in Hensol, the Vale of Glamorgan. As well as the five-bubble spa, it offers all the facilities expected of the highest rated four-star hotel in Wales including an AA Rosette restaurant and two championship golf courses.

To book a Sundari Odati massage, or any other treatment, visit www.vale-hotel.com/Spa or call 01443 665888.
Rhys Pugh thanks Vale by winning the European Amateur Championship Cup
24/07/2012
Wales’ young golfing sensation, Rhys Pugh, swung by the Vale Resort to show off his latest piece of golfing silverware – the European Amateur Championship Cup.
The Pontypridd 18-year old has just become the first ever Welsh winner of the European Amateur Championship, one of the world’s top amateur golf events, which has previously been won by Rory Mcllroy and Sergio Garcia.
He will now get an invite to next year’s British Open Championship at Muirfield as a result of winning the Championship – something he has always dreamed of.
Rhys Pugh started off his glittering golfing career with the Vale Resort’s Junior Coaching Programme in 2002 when he was just aged eight.
Since then, he has gone on to win three out of three matches for Great Britain and Ireland at the 2011 Walker Cup, the amateur equivalent of the Ryder Cup, and was awarded joint Wales Top Amateur Golfer of 2011 by the Golfing Union of Wales, along with Amy Boulden. He holds the record as youngest player to represent Wales, an honour he achieved as a 15-year-old in the 2009 Home Internationals.
Just last year, Pugh was crowned the BBC Cymru Wales Carwyn James Junior Sportsman of the Year after becoming the youngest ever person to win a Wales Amateur Order of Merit, and the only one to win both the Junior and Senior categories.
Surf & Turf Breaks in Wales
20/07/2012
Avoid wipe out this summer by taking advantage of the newly launched ‘Surf and Turf’ breaks at the Vale Resort in Hensol, Wales.

The four-star retreat in the Vale of Glamorgan, which boasts award-winning golf courses, has teamed up with Cressey’s Surf Academy to give adventure-seeking guests a “totally awesome” surf and golfing experience.

The breaks are designed for golfing fanatics who want to mix things up a little and swap the sand of the bunker for that of the beach. Each package provides two hours of surfing tuition, in groups of no more than 10, and all equipment and insurance is provided.

Guests can strip off their wetsuits, don a pair of plus fours, and play a challenging 18 holes of championship golf on one of the longest courses in the UK.

Approximately 30 minutes from the Vale Resort, Cressey’s Surf Academy is headed up by South African surfing champion, Ingemar Cressey, who has more than 20 years’ experience of riding the waves in UK and international waters, and 12 years’ experience of teaching people to surf.

Cressey’s Surf Academy is the first surf school in Wales accredited with the Academy of Surfing Instructors - the Australian based world standard in surf education, and abides by the high international standards for surf school operations.

The surf school is mobile allowing learners to visit beaches along the south Wales coast, giving the flexibility of going to wherever the best waves are for the day.

Stephanie Metson, marketing manager of the Vale Resort, said: “South Wales is blessed with some of the most beautiful coastline in the country and is building a reputation as a surfers’ hotspot.

“We’re constantly on the look out for partnerships that offer our guests something a little different from the usual, and our link up with Cressey’s Surf Academy certainly fits the bill. It’s great to have a former South African surfing champion on board to help our guests learns the basics or finely tune their surfing skills.

“The Vale Resort is perfectly located to take advantage of some of the best surfing that Wales has to offer. And when you combine this with our two championship golf courses, award-winning spa, AA Rosette restaurant, it’s not hard to see why we’re a popular choice for breaks.

“This break would suits golfing groups who want to spice up a typical golf trip with the boys with something a little extra special.”

Ingemar Cressey, founder of Cressey’s Surf Academy, said: “We decided to team up with the Vale Resort at Hensol as their brand as one of Wales’s premier resorts matches our reputation as Wales’s preeminent surf school.

“The Vale, in conjunction with Cressey’s, now offers a break for people of all ages and abilities, who can fully immerse themselves in the exhilarating surfing experience offered by the Welsh waves, combined with the luxury of Wales’ highest rated four-star resort.

“Golfers can learn together in an open and relaxed environment in the unparalleled beauty of the south Wales coastline.”

The Surf and Turf Break consists of:
• One night luxury four star accommodation
• Full Welsh breakfast
• Two hours surfing tuition (group tuition am or pm)
• All equipment at Cressey’s surf academy
• 18 holes of championship golf
• Free parking
• From £109 per person.
• For numbers of five or more, a private course can be arranged at a time to suit the party, including on weekdays.

The Vale Resort is Wales’s highest rated four-star resort with a 143-bed hotel, boasting Wales’s largest spa, two championship golf courses and a first class health and racquets club including large gymnasium.
EXPECT TO BE ‘SPA’ STRUCK AT THE NEW-LOOK VALE SPA
08/07/2011
The Vale Resort, Wales’ highest rated 4* hotel is unveiling its new spa just in time for those all-important, body beautiful, summer months. Already Wales’ largest spa, The Vale Spa will be bigger and better than ever after undergoing a £250,000 refurbishment to add a number of exclusive features that will allow guests to experience a whole new sense of wellbeing.

The new look spa has three unique relaxation zones, each with a bespoke design to help you find your idea of perfect peace. If your idea of heaven is a comfy leather sofa and a handful of the latest glossy magazines then the stylish ‘chill-out’ zone will be perfect for you. For something more relaxing surround yourself with the soothing sounds of the ‘water’ zone - with its comforting water beds and stunning water features it is a haven of total calm where you can simply float away. If you want to shut off completely then head straight to the Indian-inspired ‘sleep’ zone where shimmering lanterns and sumptuous quilts will provide the ideal environment to doze.

The brand new Thermae Suite is designed to treat your body to heat experiences that will soothe, relax and detoxify. The sauna offers traditional dry heat which can be intensified beforehand by body brushing with birch twigs. The hot and cold rainforest showers, with chromatherapy lighting, will stimulate the senses before you give your body a wake up call rubbing handfuls of ice flakes, natural salts and body muds to leave you with an all over glow. This room is ideal for groups of friends to enjoy a fun experience together.

The concept of supermodel Christy Turlington, Sundari is an Indian-inspired range of luxury products and treatments and the new-look Vale Spa is the only spa in Wales to offer this luxury brand. Based on ancient philosophies and ayerverdic treatments – a favourite with celebrity A-listers – Sundari aims to restore a natural state of health and wellbeing and is the perfect prescription for those looking for not just an outer radiance but also an inner serenity.

All of the wonderful Sundari treatments are completely tailor-made to your individual needs. Your therapist will begin with a Dosha consultation to ascertain your personality type in order to prescribe the perfect treatment for you. Then, whatever you choose, you will be treated to a heavenly foot soak and foot scrub – the traditional welcome for an honoured guest according to ancient Eastern traditions – to melt away tension and stress and prepare you for a treatment which will nourish, nurture and replenish unlike any other you have experienced.

A fabulous new café is the piece de resistance in the award-winning spa’s new additions. Chai Café is a vibrant and contemporary take on the traditional tea shop where you can sample a host of refreshing and stimulating teas as well as healthy snacks, sweet treats, coffees and even an indulgent glass of wine or champagne!

The light and airy café is designed for guests to take a break from pampering, catch up with friends and peruse the beautiful boutique shopping area. Stocking a range of fabulous products including the Yankee candle range, Melin Tregwynt Welsh traditional wool throws, beautiful Portmerion pottery and, of course, all of the traditional spa products including Sundari, Clarins and Jessica, it’s the perfect place to indulge in a little retail therapy!

And, all of this, in addition to the existing 19 luxury treatment rooms, floatation tank, hydrotherapy bath, 20m swimming pool, Jacuzzi and steam room.

The new larger spa is also in the enviable position of being able to cater for groups of up to 50. So whether you are celebrating a birthday, about to get married, or simply friends getting together for some quality time, the spa offers a range of tailored packages to suit everyone and is perfect for a relaxing yet fun-packed group experience.

VALE RETAINS ACCOLADE AS HIGHEST RATED 4* RESORT
21/06/2011
The Vale Resort at Hensol has further established its reputation as a UK leader within the hospitality industry after receiving maximum points in an AA review for the second year in a row.

The resort’s rating remains at 85% - the highest possible rating for a 4* hotel – and with the average score being 76.7% for 4 star hotels this result puts the Vale Resort at the very top end of the hotel and leisure industry.

The report describes the inspection at the £50million resort as “very positive” and highlights the strengths of the hotel as “clearly in service and hospitality received from a dedicated team”, both of which were assessed as being of 5* standard.



Stephen Leeke, Managing Director of the Vale Resort, said: “We are all delighted with this latest industry accolade. To have retained the highest possible rating is an extremely proud moment for us once again.



“Our vision is to be recognised as one of the finest resorts and members club in Europe, providing an excellent level of service, quality dining and helpful and professional staff and, through doing that, ensuring that everyone who stays here, be it on business or leisure, has a fantastic experience.



“The fact that we scored such high scores on every aspect of the inspection really shows that we are achieving that vision – and it is undoubtedly all down to the incredible teamwork that we have here at The Vale. Without the efforts of everyone from our housekeeping and reception teams working front of house, to our reservation and administration teams, our food and beverage teams and kitchen porters working behind the scenes, this simply could not have been achieved.”



In addition to the excellent service and hospitality, The AA report picked out a number of other key areas within the hotel for praise including the quality of food, spacious bedrooms and high standards of housekeeping. The report also made note of the “very good, impeccably presented, friendly staff that interacted well with guests.”



Of the extensive external areas, the report said “grounds including golf courses and leisure facilities are most impressive”



The Resort’s Vale Grill retains its AA Rosette under the guidance of Head Chef Daniel James. Of the food, the report stated that the “food offer was very good with consistency throughout the courses. Dinner was the highlight.”



An inspection from Visit Wales last month also resulted in another excellent report for The Vale Resort. The hotel was once again awarded at 5* rating in the “hospitality and friendliness” category, along with the restaurant and the exterior and leisure facilities.

Celebrity guests to the Vale Resort include the Manchester United team, Matthew Rhys, Catherine Zeta Jones, Charlotte Church, Jamie Oliver, Westlife, Gerard Houllier and Arsene Wenger. The Resort is home to a £4 million WRU National Centre of Excellence training facilities for the Welsh rugby team and also boasts training facilities for the Cardiff Blues, Cardiff City FC and the Welsh FA.

VALE RESORT RECOGNISED AS UK'S MOST ENJOYABLE GOLF COURSE
27/04/2011
The Vale Resort in Wales was recognised as the ‘UK’s Most Enjoyable Golf Course’ at a prestigious awards ceremony last week. Chosen by a panel of experts, over renowned Ryder Cup host The Belfry, The Vale Resort picked up the accolade at the inaugural 59 Club Awards Dinner, established to recognise excellence in golf.

59club’s independent panel of testers was responsible for picking the winner of the award from over 50 courses. After whittling the finalists down to two, The Vale Resort’s Wales National course and the Brabazon at The Belfry, the panel decided that the Welsh course was ultimately their favourite to play in the whole of the UK. It’s a notable feather in the cap of The Vale Resort as The Brabazon has previously staged some of the most memorable moments in the history of the Ryder Cup.

The Vale Resort’s Golf Operations Manager Clive Coombs says “We are absolutely thrilled with the win, especially when you look at the standard of the courses that we were up against. At The Vale Resort we are, of course, committed to ensuring that our courses play to the very highest standard, but it has also always been absolutely crucial to us that our members and visitors are able to come and simply enjoy the experience that we offer here - I’m delighted that our efforts have paid off.”

The Vale’s Wales National course, which has hosted a number of European Challenge Tour events, offers a mixture of mature wooded areas, wide and narrow fairways and vast areas of water features. This is all set within 650 acres of beautiful Welsh countryside, boasting an abundance of wildlife.


The Wales National opened in 2003 and is one of the longest champion golf courses outside America at 7,433 yards off the championship tees. Water comes into play on a number of holes and greens are also constructed to USGA standard. The Wales National’s 2nd hole is the longest par 5 in Wales.

The other, par 72, Lake course is dominated by a 20-acre lake and has water coming into play on 12 of its holes. Its 8th hole looks down over the largest heronry in Wales. Its unique signature hole, The Island Green (12th), has been ranked as one of the UK’s top golf holes.

Clive Coombs leads a team of four top golf professionals, all fully qualified members of the PGA with over fifty years of professional golfing experience between them. The team is renowned for its friendly approach to beginners or newcomers as well as to their challenging tutorials for more competitive golfers.
NEXT GENERATION WRU PITCH UN-VALED
30/06/2010
The Welsh Rugby Union has unveiled the first of its state-of-the-art rugby pitches under construction at the new Centre of Excellence at national team headquarters, the Vale Resort near Hensol.

A ‘third generation’ all weather rugby pitch has been laid to specifications exactly replicating the dimensions of the surface at Wales’ home ground, the Millennium Stadium, at the express request of national team management.
“From the length of the dead ball area to all the all the other dimensions of the pitch, right down to the eventual pitch markings this training ground will be an exact replica of that at the Millennium Stadium,” said Wales’ forwards coach, and the man who will lead his national team on tour to Canada and USA this summer, Robin McBryde.
“Detail like that will help the national team in the long term and once the all-weather surface has been laid and the other pitches are available to us we will be able to boast one of the finest rugby training facilities in Europe if not on a world-wide scale.”
Three full size normal pitches and two half pitches will also be installed at the Vale Resort complex as part of the new development for exclusive use by the national team and the full range of WRU squads, but the all-weather surface – the largest of its kind in Europe – will prove particular valuable to the national side.
The pitch has official FIFA approval, but is specifically designed to accommodate the needs of rugby union and meets all IRB standards.
It is 130metres by 80metres in dimension and is underlayed with a bespoke rubber, shock absorbant, material - known as Brock - which minimise the impact on the body when a player falls with force.
Drainage is incredibly efficient and there is minimum chance of water-fall or ice preventing play, making the new pitch literally useable in all weathers, with the only maintenance necessary being the use of specially designed brushes to care for the imitation grass surface.
“The investment made in these facilities will pay dividends to Welsh rugby for years to come and both the Vales Resort and the Sports Council for Wales, without whom this dream would not have been brought so swiftly into such magnificent reality, deserve many plaudits,” said WRU chairman David Pickering.
“Warren Gatland and his men will soon boast the best rugby training facilities world sport has to offer and the future stars of the Wales team as well as all WRU squads will undoubtedly reap the benefits.”
The new 3G pitch at the Vale Resort near Hensol is part of a multi million pound centre of excellence created for the WRU.
The Centre of Excellence development is the result of a three way partnership, with investment from the WRU, Leekes, the owners of the Vale Resort, and the Sports Council for Wales who have allocated a £1.5 million Lottery grant into the project.
“This is an exciting new development for the Vale Resort as we further extend our word-class sports facilities on this 650 acre site. We are pleased to see the new 3G outdoor pitch for the WRU nearing completion,” said Stephen Leeke, Managing Director of the Vale Resort.
“We have made significant progress on site in the past six months to create a sophisticated training base for the WRU which we believe competes with any other major training facilities in Europe and possibly in the world.
“This is a world-class partnership and a culmination of the vision by the Leeke family to support excellence in Welsh sport from grass roots up.
“This new pitch is state-of-the-art and is one of the finest of its type in the world. It incorporates the latest 3G artificial pitch technology. This allows full impact for training as it reacts and behaves like a natural surface with the benefit of being able to be used in all weathers and therefore all year round.”
VALE RESORT BECOMES HIGHEST 4* RATED HOTEL IN WALES
29/06/2010
The Vale Resort at Hensol has further established its reputation as a UK leader within the hospitality industry after receiving maximum points in an AA review, to add to its AA rosette for its Vale Grill restaurant.
The resort’s rating has increased from 74% to 85% over the last three years - putting the Vale Resort at the very top end of the hotel and leisure industry market in the UK.
The Vale Resort is showing a winning formula across its hotel and leisure business as it expands and invests in its facilities on its 650-acre rural site and looks to compete at the very top of its market. On top of its leading hospitality facilities, the Vale also hosts world-class training bases for Wales’ leading sports businesses including Amlin Challenge Cup winners the Cardiff Blues, the WRU, FAW and Cardiff City FC.
Recently named the UK’s Best Large Family Friendly Hotel at the Hotel Excellence Awards 2010, a stay at the picturesque £50m resort was described in this report as “a most positive experience where guest service was unobtrusive, effective & delivered by a highly trained professional team”.

Stephen Leeke, Managing Director of the Vale Resort, which celebrated its landmark 10th year in business last year, said: “We are all delighted with this latest industry accolade and to have secured the highest possible AA rating within our market this year is a proud moment for everyone working here.

“Our vision and philosophy is to be one of the UK’s leading independent hotel resorts with a focus on providing an excellent level of service, quality dining, helpful and professional staff and that people have a great stay with us whether on business or leisure.

“We are expanding our facilities and to maintain such high scores on every aspect of our business is a mark of the great teamwork we have working here. Without the fantastic efforts from everyone from our housekeeping and reception teams working front of house to our reservation and administration teams and kitchen porters working behind the scenes, this simply could not have been achieved.”

The report proves that despite a tough economic climate, the Leeke family’s commitment to quality service in a quality environment has not waivered. The AA report picked out key areas for praise including excellent levels of service, friendly and well-presented staff, quality of food, spacious well-appointed bedrooms and high standards of housekeeping. The report noted: “All staff encountered were friendly, polite and interacted with guests without prompting.” It also said: “Leisure facilities are some of the best in Wales, grounds are a feature along with the extensive parking. Housekeeping was seen to be of a high standard throughout.”

The Resort won its AA rosette for its Vale Grill restaurant last year, which is now under the supervision of Head Chef Daniel James. The AA report commented on a ‘Very good use of fresh ingredients, simply presented.”
In September, the Vale was awarded a Gold Award from Visit Wales in recognition of its outstanding quality, exceptional comfort and hospitality. Celebrity guests include the Manchester United team, Matthew Rhys, Catherine Zeta Jones, Charlotte Church, Jamie Oliver, Westlife, Gerard Houllier and Arsene Wenger. The Resort is home to a £4 million WRU National Centre of Excellence training facilities for the Welsh rugby team and also boasts training facilities for the Cardiff Blues, Cardiff City FC and the Welsh FA.
VALE RESORT GUARANTEES TO HELP BUSINESSES IN 2010
26/01/2010
The Vale Resort, Nr Cardiff is helping companies to get the New Year off to a flying start by offering incredibly low prices for all conference and meeting bookings. Selected dates are even cut to over 50% off standard conference rates, starting from as little as £29 per delegate. Not only that, they’ve added a few little extras including free Wi-Fi at no additional cost to ensure you can easily engage with your delegates.
The 143 bed luxury 4 star hotel is set in 650 acres of beautiful parkland and located just off junction 34 of the M4 and a 15 minute drive from Cardiff City centre.
Over £1million has been invested in conferencing facilities at the resort over the past two years, making it one of the best facilities in South Wales.
The Vale offers 10 state-of-the-art multi-functional meeting and conference rooms, providing a flexible range of options for every business requirement. So, for a small meeting with small prices, through to a large conference for more than 700 delegates, the Vale can provide the perfect solution for your new year business needs.

This is in addition to the on site leisure, spa, golf, dining and accommodation facilities, plus an experienced team of event managers that ensure the smooth running of each event – however big or small.
VALE RESORT CELEBRATES DECADE IN BUSINESS
03/12/2009
One of Wales’ most successful leisure and hospitality businesses, The Vale Resort, nr Cardiff is celebrating its 10th anniversary this week. The £50m hotel resort opened its doors to its first hotel guests in November 1999, just before the Rugby World Cup and has now played host to a staggering 750,000 hotel guests during its first decade in business.

The 143 bedroom hotel, based within a 650-acre rural setting, has enjoyed significant success since its inception, with a string of awards including most recently two AA rosette award winning restaurants on site and in September 2009 was awarded a Gold Award from Visit Wales in recognition of its outstanding quality, exceptional comfort and hospitality.

It has been a winning year for the Vale Resort which is flying the flag for Wales’ hospitality industry after receiving a top AA score and new AA rosette for its Vale Grill restaurant earlier this year (May 2009). The Resort achieved an 82% AA merit rating out of a maximum 85% within the four star rating band, with its contemporary Welsh restaurant the Vale Grill achieving its first AA rosette.
The hotel has now established itself as one of the UK’s leading destinations for family breaks thanks to its wide-ranging sports and leisure facilities, extensive and spacious accommodation and family friendly policies.
The hotel employs more than 270 staff and prides itself on employing more than 90% of colleagues from the local area.

The wide ranging line-up of celebrity guests that have stayed in the luxury four-star hotel including Catherine Zeta-Jones, Westlife, Reverend Desmond Tutu, Jamie Oliver, Sir Alex Ferguson, Charlotte Church and Sir Ian Botham. It has played host to top sports teams and events including the British and Irish Lions, Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Sir Steve Redgrave’s Golden Five Celebrity Charity Golf Events and a number of golf’s senior Challenge Tour tournaments.
A popular destination for wedding receptions and short breaks during its 10 years, the hotel has hosted more than 1,000 wedding receptions, 275,000 rounds of golf, provided 40,000 massages and sold 80,000 bottles of champagne.

Stephen Leeke, Managing Director of the Vale Resort said: “This is an important landmark to celebrate as we recognise the significant investment that our business has made to Wales’ hospitality and leisure industry and the economy in this area.

“Our aim at the Vale is to consistently perform at the top level and in world-class company. We have seen this with the creation and development of the extensive sports facilities here with unrivalled training homes for the WRU, FAW, Cardiff City and Cardiff Blues - which are amongst some of the finest in Europe - if not the world.

“Our hotel seeks to provide a very personal, high quality and consistent service to all our guests and we strive to beat these standards year on year as we develop and invest further in our business.

“We are very proud of what we have established at the Vale and we look forward to another successful 10 years in the hotel business.”

Wales top 10s, Stephen Jones, Sam Norton-Knight and Stephen McPhail took time out of their busy schedules to help celebrate the hotel’s landmark decade and cut the hotel’s birthday cake.
Scarlets and Wales rugby star Stephen Jones, stayed at the Vale Hotel as part of the Wales team just after it had opened, during the 1999 Rugby World Cup.

He said: “Having our training base here at the Vale makes a huge difference to the way we prepare for internationals. We have the best of both worlds; the facilities are outstanding and the surroundings of the hotel and leisure facilities make it a relaxing, comfortable location for the players to be – it makes it easier for us to switch off and chill out when we want to. It’s been a great success story since it started and the Wales players are pleased to be based here.

“It’s also a great central point just off the M4, so for players like me based in West Wales it only takes just over an hour to get here which is a real plus.”

Irish football international Stephen McPhail of Cardiff City FC added: “The Vale is a top-class venue for us, there is no better facility around that I’ve seen. It’s all kitted out, we have everything we need in one place and it makes such a difference to have all these great hotel facilities on site – a few of the boys enjoy rounds of golf, it has some top-class courses - others use the leisure facilities. It does make you feel more relaxed and comfortable.”

Australian rugby international Sam Norton-Knight, who joined the Cardiff Blues from Super 14 side the NSW Waratahs has seen training facilities across the globe. He said: “Coming to work at a facility like this, with everything the hotel can offer as well, takes any anxiety out of training because you have a world-class home and you know you are going to get the most out of every session. It doesn’t compare to anything I’ve seen before, it’s phenomenal.”


Ben Danielsen, General Manager of the Vale Resort said: “This is an exciting landmark for the Vale hotel and gives us the chance to celebrate what we have achieved in the past decade.

“Hospitality is all down to teamwork and we have a great team here who we will look to develop further to ensure we consistently provide a high quality customer experience.”
Vale Resort receives Gold Award from Visit Wales
29/09/2009
The Vale Resort at Hensol nr Cardiff is celebrating another industry accolade after receiving news that it has achieved a Gold Award from Visit Wales as a leading tourism business.

Announced today (Thursday 24th September 2009) by Heritage Minister, Alun Fred Jones, the Vale is the largest hotel resort to have been included on the Visit Wales Gold Award List of accommodation for 2009/2010.

The aim of the Gold Award is to recognise and reward outstanding quality, exceptional comfort and hospitality in the serviced accommodation sector in Wales.

The Heritage Minister congratulated the tourism businesses which have been listed, and said: “The gold award businesses exceed customer expectation and are first class products in all respects. These businesses are making an exceptional contribution to the quality of the Welsh tourism product and they are to be commended for their efforts. The introduction of this award signifies that Wales is serious about raising the quality of its tourism product.”

The award is based on independent mystery shopping experiences, training and staff development, independent quality and accessibility assessments and through the Visit Wales grading scheme.

It has been a winning year for the Vale Resort which is flying the flag for Wales’ hospitality industry after receiving a top AA score and new AA rosette for its Vale Grill restaurant earlier this year (May 2009). The Resort achieved an 82% AA merit rating out of a maximum 85% within the four star rating band, with its contemporary Welsh restaurant the Vale Grill achieving its first AA rosette.
Ben Danielsen, General Manager of the Vale Resort said: “This is another great accolade for the Vale Resort and recognises our efforts and focus on providing an excellent and individual customer experience.

“Hospitality is all down to teamwork and high on our agenda is the development of colleagues to ensure they reach their highest potential and that we consistently provide a high quality customer experience.

“We are delighted to have that recognised by Visit Wales and credit should go to everyone working here at the Vale in helping achieving this award.

“As one of the largest hotels to ever receive the Gold Award, it also underpins our aim to connect on a personal and individual level with our guests as well as the quality of the accommodation and surroundings here at the Vale. Too often large hotels do not put enough emphasis on all important personal service – we want guests to have a great experience that is custom made for them as individuals.”
The Vale is also one of the largest hotels to be part of the “Croeso Cynnes Cymreig – A Warm Welsh Welcome” programme aimed to strengthen a distinctive Welsh culture, food, language, history and landscape in Wales’ hospitality industry.
Stephen Leeke, Managing Director of the Vale Resort said: “Our aim at the Vale is to consistently perform at the top level and in world-class company.

“We are encouraged with recent performance and there are certainly signs that the market is improving; with a healthy forward order book for weddings and local and national corporate events in 2009/2010, our results are looking pretty good at present. We have invested widely in our leisure facilities with a £500,000 refurbishment completed earlier this year, which has in turn boosted the recruitment of our leisure club members.

“A big part of our success is linked to the wide range of facilities we have here with hotel, spa, conference golf, leisure products and as well as the major sports investment in training facilities here for the WRU, FAW, Cardiff City and the Cardiff Blues.

“This summer we launched our new Hensol Castle Park apartment development which has been a great success. We do not want to stand still, we are constantly evolving, however as part of that we must keep a watchful eye on ensuring we maintain the best quality standards.

“We are delighted with this award because it recognises that regardless of the size and scope of this Resort, we are still able to offer a very personal, high quality experience for our guests and that our commitment to employing great people will stand us in good stead for years to come.”
HENSOL CASTLE PARK SET TO STUN
18/09/2009
The Vale Resort, nr Cardiff has announced the launch of an exclusive new residential development based at Hensol Castle Park, which neighbours the current four-star world-class hotel, golf, spa and leisure facility.

The luxury apartment scheme is part of the multi-million pound redevelopment of the grade one listed 17th century Hensol Castle and its grounds into one of the most prestigious boutique hotel, spa and residential schemes in Wales.

The Hensol Castle Park development, costing an estimated £35m, will see the stunning Hensol Castle transformed into a 50-bed exclusive five-star hotel with an adjoining residential spa as well as the conversion of a number of buildings within the grounds into of 59 spacious design-led apartments.

Set within 150 acres of spectacular and historical parkland setting, phase one of the apartments is set to be officially launched at the end of this month (July 25/26th 2009).

The scheme is being developed and released by the owners of the neighbouring Vale Resort, the Leekes Group – an independent, family-run group of leisure and retail businesses owned by group chairman, Gerald Leeke OBE. The Leekes Group purchased the Hensol Castle Estate in 2003 and is responsible for the entire development and is managing construction, redevelopment and marketing of the location. Ten mansion buildings set in the Castle grounds will all be extensively redeveloped and refurbished to create the spacious apartment collection. A show home and marketing suite within the development are now open.

Managing Director of the Vale Resort and the new Hensol Castle Park, Stephen Leeke said: “We know that these apartments will have huge appeal from a wide cross-section of buyers. We have already drawn-up a reservations list and interest has been wide-ranging. We already have a thriving golf and leisure membership here at the Vale as well as the sports teams who have their training bases here. In addition to our existing customers expressing interest, we have had enquiries from a number Welsh people living in London and other parts of the UK who want a desirable second home in South Wales for weekend and mid week business visits.

“Add to that the number of sports stars that are interested in having a home at Hensol Castle Park, and we have every belief that this residential scheme will be a huge success.
“The concept behind these apartments is that they offer contemporary living within a picturesque rural location and with it a unique lifestyle choice - living next door to extensive luxury leisure, golf and spa facilities as well as the capital city within 20 minutes drive.

“We are well aware of market conditions but know that this development has a definite X factor and something very valuable to offer in terms of its fantastic location and setting. And the interest that has been shown so far makes us feel optimistic.”

The group’s retail business (Leekes), which specialises in interior design and has more than 100 years track record designing and furnishing homes is responsible for the interior design of the new homes which will have the latest designer kitchen and bathroom fittings guaranteed to impress.

Prices start from £290,000 up to £400,000.

The neighbouring Vale Resort was established more than 10 years ago and during that time has established itself as one of the UK’s leading independent four-star resorts with a thriving golf and leisure membership.

The Vale is one of the top golfing venues in the UK, with two championship courses the Wales national and The Lake both of which have received industry accolades. The Vale has hosted annual European PGA Tour events for the past four years and is playing host to a SWALEC European Challenge Tour event 23 – 26th July. The Wales national opened in 2003 and is one of Europe’s newest championship golf courses and at 7,433 yards off the championship tees is one of the longest outside America.

The Vale Resort is also home to the WRU, FAW, Cardiff City and the current EDF Energy Cup winners, Cardiff Blues RFC - all of whom have their training bases (including the WRU’s indoor arena) located at the 650-acre resort site.

Features of the new Hensol Castle Park apartments include:
• Two storey apartment buildings (10 buildings in total - each circa 8,500 sq ft and spaced throughout the park)
• Spacious apartments range from 1200 sq ft to 2000 sq ft in size on ground and first floors.
• Designer bathroom suites including wet room design
• Rokpunkt designer German kitchens
• Full wifi and integrated sound and vision throughout
• High efficiency air conditioning
• Natural materials – hardwood floors
VALE RESORT SHINES OUT WITH NEW AA ROSETTE AND HIGHER AA QUALITY RATING
07/05/2009
The Vale Resort at Hensol is flying the flag for Wales’ hospitality industry after receiving a top AA score and new AA rosette for its Vale Grill restaurant.
The Resort has achieved an 82% AA merit rating out of a maximum 85% within the four star rating band. And its contemporary restaurant the Vale Grill achieves its first AA rosette under the supervision of Head Chef James Bumpass who has set out to source only Welsh ingredients in his menus.

The Resort’s General Manager, Ben Danielsen joined the Leeke family owned resort just over a year ago from the award-winning Donnington Valley hotel & Spa in Newbury and has built an experienced senior management team to set high standards throughout the resort.
Mr Danielsen said the Vale had taken very significant steps forward in the past year: “We have moved from a 74% rating up to 82% which is significant as the maximum merit score for four star hotels is 85% - so we are at the very top end of this market.
“The first hallmark of quality will always be day in day out consistency and that is exactly what we seek to provide at the Vale and is ratified by these top ratings.
“It is an acknowledgement from the leading independent quality assessor that we are doing great things at the Vale and gives a boost at a time when the news pages are filled with stories about a distressed economy and the impacts of the recession.
“Our aim is to provide a personal and excellent service and connect on an emotional level with our guests. Too often large hotels do not provide that – our aim is for guests to have an experience that is custom made for them as individuals. With the scope and range of facilities here – we can do that well.”
Ben Danielsen added that the Vale’s new Grill restaurant was going from strength to strength.
He said: “We are particularly delighted with the awarding of an AA rosette for the Vale Grill thanks to the quality and creativity being infused into our food offer here under the guidance of head chef James Bumpass.
“In the last year, we have focused on using locally sourced Welsh products and to keep our menus and food service, simple, fresh, mouthwatering and only using high quality ingredients. We want to be part of the growing food culture in Wales and by supporting Welsh producers can be help promote the very best that our nation has to offer.
“James and his team have worked hard to secure consistency in the kitchen and credit must also go to the highly professional service team in the Grill who ensure guests enjoy good food and wine in a contemporary and comfortable setting.”
The Vale’s General Manager also congratulated his team of dedicated staff who he said, “deserve the most praise”.
He added: "Hospitality is all down to team work. Without the fantastic efforts from the team in front of house and back house, from reservation to administration, from housekeeping to kitchen porters this would not have happened. The decision was made early last year to create an individual experience for the guests and together the team has delivered this and we are all delighted.”
Key report comments from the AA included “excellent leisure choice and facilities”, “good use of fresh ingredients and dinner was positive, accurate cooking by James Bumpass”, “staff were smart, interactive with all guests and more proactive”, “an assured management organisation which has seen an uplift in the quality of hospitality and service”, “all areas demonstrated very good attention to detail”, “service demonstrated a professional approach by all”.
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