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Beyond Backrubs


From sleep analysis to serious workouts, spas in Asia are now offering much more than rubdowns. Here, five emerging trends in the region

Published on Oct 14, 2010


+ Devarana Spa, Bangkok

Need a quick recharge? Try the three-hour Power Nap Program offered by Devarana Spa in Bangkok’s Dusit Thani hotel. Clients are lulled with a lavender body scrub, a hot milk bath and a Swedish massage before 30 minutes of sweet slumber. There’s even a lullaby CD for you to take home.

Bt4,900 per treatment; 946 Rama IV Road, Bangkok, Thailand; +66 2 636 3596;

+ Pacific Sleep Centre, Singapore

A solid night’s sleep is key to good health—a fact that spas are latching onto. If you’re suffering from ailments such as insomnia or sleep apnea, consider a sleep counseling session at Singapore’s Pacific Sleep Centre, where Dr. Kenny Pang will do a nasal endoscopy and a detailed sleep assessment. Depending on your diagnosis, the medical treatment may involve minimally invasive tonsil removal, palate expansion or tongue suture operations using surgery techniques pioneered by Pang himself. Afterwards, patients are then prescribed a holistic regimen of massages, facial treatments, and yoga and Pilates classes.

Sessions from S$68; Level 20, Paragon, 290 Orchard Road, Singapore; +65 6887 129;



+ Cameron Highlands Resort, Malaysia

Tea’s medicinal qualities are well known, but imbibing isn’t the only way to reap its benefits. Soak in a tub of this soothing, anti-aging brew before your spa treatment at the
Spa Village in Cameron Highlands Resort
—a ritual that pays tribute to the property’s tea plantation past.

Treatments from RM200; Tanah Rata, Cameron Highlands, Pahang Darul Makmur, Malaysia; +60 5 491 1100;

+ Q Day Spa, Jakarta

In Jakarta, Q Day Spa takes the antioxidant-packed leaves further by offering a wide range of tea-based treatments such as a herbal tea body scrub, a hot stone massage using tea essential oils, and a green tea scalp treatment and hair spa.

Treatments from Rp650,000; No. 9 Jalan Gunawarman, Jakarta, Indonesia; +62 21 725 0114

+ Body Contours, Singapore

With purported hydrating properties, white tea is also gaining popularity: In Singapore, Body Contours’ White Tea Spa Ritual treatment starts with a full body cleansing with tea, followed by a white tea-and-honey polish and a white tea wrap with lemongrass and grapefruit extracts.

S$200 per treatment; #01-03, 30 Hill Sreet, Singapore; +65 6334 619;



+ Golden Chariot, India

Pampering goes on the move as new luxury trains in Asia debut with spa cars. India’s Golden Chariot offers Ayurvedic massages in their massage rooms—a restorative accompaniment to the passing scenery of charming Karnataka.

US$2,450 per person for a seven-night journey; +91 11 4686 8686;

+ Tangula Luxury Trains, China

Next year, the long-awaited Tangula Luxury Trains will provide customized treatments using organic Ila products as you traverse across the remote Western regions of China.

US$3,300 per person for a three-night journey; +86 10 5809 5333



+ Four Seasons Macau

Diamonds are a spa-goer’s best friend: Hotel spas are utilizing gemstones in treatments. During the two-hour Diamond Magnetic Jewel ritual at the Four Seasons Macau therapists apply semi-precious stones such as jade and lapis lazuli onto your chakra points and then buff your skin with a body polish made with diamond dust and micronized iron.

Treatment MOP1,700; Estrada da Baía de N. Senhora da Esperança, Macau; +853 2881 8888;

+ InterContinental Hong Kong

The Pearl of the Orient package at the InterContinental Hong Kong uses a nourishing emulsion blended with pearl powder to give your body a luminous glow.

Treatment HK$2,500; 18 Salisbury Road, Kowloon, Hong Kon; +852 2721 1211;

+ Chi Spa, Pudong

In Shanghai, the Chi Spa at the Pudong Shangri-La hotel deploys Biodroga’s Royal Aquamarine products, containing powdered aquamarine, in its Crystal Energizing Facial.

Treatment RMB1,280; 33 Fu Cheng Lu, Pudong, Shanghai, China; +86 21 6882 888;



+ Anantara Si Kao Resort & Spa, Trang

From half-day workshops to three-day journeys, Anantara’s new rock-climbing courses give participants an opportunity to experience Sikao’s majestic limestone cliffs. Beginners and advanced climbers benefit from improved strength, stamina and willpower. Afterwards, venture into the area’s virgin rainforests and mangrove reserves—the humid environment keeps skin moist and young.

Courses from Bt14,000; 198–199 Moo 5 Had Pak Meng, Changlang Road, Maifad, Trang, Thailand; +66 75 205 88;

+ The Regent Maldives

Opened this spring, Thaa Atoll’s highly anticipated resort will boast a spa that brings together health, beauty and fitness. Morning swims in the ocean-view Vitality Pool and private tai chi, yoga and Pilates instruction in a pavilion overlooking a lagoon are followed by a massage and organic cuisine.

Maalefushi Island, Thaa Atoll, Maldives; +960 678 0088;


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