BOURNEMOUTH is being promoted as a destination for spa experiences as part of a campaign to market its “hidden gems”.

The resort, popular in the Victorian era for its pine-scented air and sea bathing, is being marketed for its “wellness” breaks and treatment packages.

Bournemouth Tourism says spa experiences make the town ideal for romantic weekend breaks, “girlie getaways” or pamper days.

It says many hotels have run spa packages for years, but the arival of the Eforea spa at the Hilton Bournemouth has put it among the top areas for “wellness”.

It says almost every major treatment and brand is now available in Bournemouth as well as opportunities to package a spa day with an evening meal or afternoon tea.

Attractions include Elemis, ESPA, Dermalogica and BABOR treatments; Jessica and Shellac manicures and pedicures; Vita Liberata and St Tropez tanning; hot stone, Swedish and Indian head massage and specialist massages and facials for mums-to-be, as well as treatments for men.

Chris Evetts, health club and spa manager at the Hallmark West Cliff Hotel & Spa, said: “Bournemouth is the ideal destination – you can take time away from your busy day or schedule with a nice relaxing spa day using the fantastic facilities we have on offer, and you’re just a 10-minute walk from the seven miles of golden sand at Bournemouth beach or 15 minutes from the shops.”

Research for Bournemouth’s National Coastal Tourism Academy says one in five people take a “wellness” break at least annually. The promotion of spa breaks is part of Hidden Bournemouth, a rolling campaign by Bournemouth Tourism to highlight some of the town’s less well known attractions. The campaign, featuring the hashtag #hiddenbournemouth, started last November with a Vegan Bournemouth promotion.

Spas being promoted are the Eforea Spa at Hilton Bournemouth; Hallmark Bournemouth West Cliff Hotel and Spa; Oceana Day Spa at the Ocean Beach Hotel and Spa; and Bluewater Spa and Leisure Club at Best Western the Connaught Hotel. Other spa venues include the Health and Beauty Rooms at the Highcliff Marriott Hotel; Village Spa Bournemouth; Edge Spa; Bathhouse Spa at the Chine Hotel; Forever Gorgeous at the Queens Hotel; and Beauty Essence at the Cottonwood Hotel.