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About Peebles Hydro

Old Hydro

At the heart of the local community since 1878.

Our first foundation stone was laid in 1878. Three years and £70,000 later, Peebles Hotel Hydropathic opened its doors to excited guests and patients, keen to sample the very latest in water cures.

Patients were expected to take treatments prescribed by the resident doctor; we just can’t imagine our spa guests warming to the idea. The water came from St Ronan’s well, which is around six miles east of the hotel. Lightly salty, it flowed from the spring at a bracing 6°C. Some of the treatment options included peat and sulphur baths – not to mention high pressure jets of hot water and mustard poultices.

But water wasn’t the only treatment on offer. The hotel also generated its own electricity, and was able to offer a frankly terrifying range of electro-therapy, from infra-red rays to light baths.

As a patient, you’d also attend short lectures from the medical staff, decrying a return to a life of idle gluttony after a restorative stay at the hotel.

However, there was plenty more to occupy the day, especially if you had ailments in need of a cure. Much like today, tennis, golf, fishing and walking were popular pursuits. The swimming pool hosted lessons, and in the evenings, guests would take part in entertainment hosted in the recreation room (today, our grand ballroom).

Of course, there are many other tales – like the terrible fire of 1905, the grand re-opening of 1907, and the wartime requisitioning of the hotel in 1939. However, the only way to get a true sense of the place is to wander around our 30 acres of grounds, and soak in almost 150 years of Peebles Hydro history.