AN ICONIC Lake District hotel will shut its doors this week as it embarks on the biggest change to the popular establishment in more than 300 years.

The Low Wood Bay Resort & Spa, situated on the shores of Windermere south of Ambleside, is set for a new look in 2017 with a major £16m refurbishment and new build.

The multi-million pound project will see the existing historic property completely renovated over the coming months with a full upgrade and refurbishment of all existing rooms, new outdoor leisure facilities, a stunning Atrium, world-class spa, and an additional new restaurant concept, 'Blue Smoke'.

Later in the summer a new building will open with a further 32 suites and studio rooms including its own club lounge and roof garden.

Simon Berry, chairman and managing director of English Lakes Hotels Resorts & Venues, said: “It is a really exciting new chapter for us here at Low Wood Bay. This stunning building has been here for over 300 years and this will be the biggest change it has gone through in its history.

“The Lake District is a uniquely beautiful holiday destination and we’re creating an exceptional, stand-out resort from which to enjoy it.

"We want to make something truly special, bringing modern, top quality facilities to the area but without compromising the integrity or charm of this historic building; we really feel we have achieved that with these plans. We can’t wait to welcome our guests, both old and new, to see their reactions."

English Lakes Hotel Resorts & Venues, which owns the property, has worked closely with the Lake District National Park Authority to progress the plans and create a ‘world class destination’ while remaining in keeping with the area and using local connections and expertise.

Set to open in summer, one of the most significant investments is in the luxurious spa, complete with an outdoor-heated infinity pool, sauna, steam room and Canadian hot tubs with views over the lake and mountains.

The extensive fitness suite will also feature state-of-the-art equipment and an express salon.

The introduction of the ‘Blue Smoke’ dining concept will provide British produce cooked on a South American wood fired grill - the first of its kind in the area.

The hotel will reopen its doors in April.