Sunday, 27 March 2011

Aquatic Relaxation

My friend took me to the Spa at the Landmark Mandarin Oriental for a Rasul Treatment, which is basically mud slathered all over your body.

But the bonus was being able to use the other facilities in the spa for an hour before our actual treatment.

"Thrones" in the Rasul treatment room
We got to hang out in the thermal bath with spray jets, lounge in the beautifully tiled steam room and lie on the heated recliners while drinking lemon- or orange-flavoured water. By the time we had the Rasul, we were already completely relaxed.

The Rasul is done in a gorgeous copper-tiled area with four "chairs" inset into the four corners of the small room. In the centre is a giant block of white crystal where steam comes out from underneath it. The ceiling is also beautiful, with small lights that look like stars in the sky.

First the therapist put one kind of natural mud on our face and neck. Then for our body she put a more liquid mud, practically covering everything except our hands. She then explained to us the warm heat in the room at 38 degrees Celsius would dry the mud to draw impurities out of our skin. Then after about 15 minutes steam would fill the room and make the mud moist again, allowing its natural minerals to be absorbed into our skin.

As my friend said, it was too bad there weren't recliners in this room as it made it hard to relax while slipping in our tiled "thrones" from all the mud. Towards the end of the steam the therapist came in and gave us cold wet towels that we immediately turned gray from our hands that had smoothed the mud on our bodies and later some water to drink.

After the steam was over, the lights dimmed and moments later a warm shower rained down on each of us from where we were sitting to wash off all the mud. We got to have an extra rinse off in the showers that had sprays coming from various directions.

The treatment wasn't over yet -- after a few minutes to let our body temperatures go down a bit, we were led into another treatment room where the therapist applied lotion on our bodies and gave me a foot massage (or you could choose a scalp massage).

Finally we were led to the relaxation room where you could put on headphones and zone out completely, snack on some fruit and more fruit-flavoured water or ginger tea.

What a relaxing afternoon -- for HK$460 ($59) each. It's practically a mini holiday on the weekend.

5/F, Landmark Mandarin Oriental
15 Queen's Road Central
2132 0188

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