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Singapore's best spas
ESPA at Resorts World Sentosa
On paper, the treatments and packages at ESPA look incredibly expensive, but let's be honest – it's worth every spare dollar you saved on not taking that lazy day cab or expensive lunch. Located adjacent to the water-themed Equarius Hotel at Resorts World Sentosa, this spa comes highly recommended for good reason. The 10,000-square-metre space houses a series of hot and cold facilities, include a Japanese-style onsen set on the edge of small jungle, a crystal steam room, gymnasium, yoga studio and Tangerine Cafe serving up spa cuisine by chefs Sam and Forest Leong. ESPA's staff are trained to deliver more than soothing massages and stress-relief rituals. On its staff roster is Tiffany Wee, a naturopath trained to deliver useful advice on living and eating healthier, as well as perky gym trainers that conduct classes in their impressively kitted out workout room. Patrons who purchase treatments worth more than $200 are welcome to use the various pools and exercise classes, and if you're looking to make good on a New Year's resolution to become a healthier you, book a consultation with Wee for an extra $200. ESPA's after-treatment facilities are also unrivalled – thoughtful extras like the special spin dryer that whirls your swim suit dry, and the sleeping room with pods to take a nap in after your treatment – don't you hate abruptly navigating the bustle of public transportation after a soothing massage? – are compelling arguments to go to ESPA and make a whole good day of it. Treatment to try The Day Spa Retreat ($450). Centred around themes like Fit For Life, Weight Management, Intro to Detox and De-Stress, this package is a good primer to the place as a lifestyle destination as it includes a consultation with a lifestyle or fitness staffer, and two treatments: one 60 minutes long, and another 45 minutes – try the Indulgence Hammam Ritual, a Turkish bath session in Singapore's first hammam steam facility. The package also includes a two-course meal at Tangerine, with a menu with a legend recommending dishes based on the retreat you've enjoyed.
So SPA at The Singapore Resort & Spa
Previously Spa Botanica at The Sentosa Singapore, A Beaufort Hotel, this destination spa has been feted and loved for their indoor and outdoor rejuvenation facilities. Rebranded in mid-2014, a whole host of new rejuvenating treatments grounded in French cosmetology practices are now in place, with the treatment menu sectioned into appetisers, mains and desserts to help patrons mix and match their indulgences. Starter selections, for example, feature quick essential body oil scrubs and facials ($100-$120/30-45min), and Mains consist of longer sessions filled with multi-step facials and body massages borrowing wisdom from India, Thailand and the Orient ($180-$240/60-90min). The spa’s much-beloved volcanic mud seating areas, waterfalls, pools and meditation labyrinths are still also in place, as are their mini-bungalow-like Couple Spa Suites ($80/30min). Treatment to try So Exhilarating Massage ($190/60min). For the weary body craving a good knock and knead, the massage features a small dose of honey to eat, before lavender oil is worked into the skin in quick finger presses – it’s sometimes ticklish – and stretches. So Exhilarating also features a rocking technique which has the masseur swaddling the body between cloths to soothingly sway limbs and the spine to stretch out joints.
Probably the closest to a public bath in Singapore, this independent spa complex is reminiscent of a Chinese hot springs resort. Upon entering, you’re directed to either the men’s or women’s side and given a locker – swimming trunks, robes and towels are provided, so there’s no need to bring anything. The locker rooms have a hot pool (plus a cold pool for the men, for dunking yourself into afterwards – it supposedly helps to improve circulation), sauna and showers. In the common areas, you can relax on comfy couches with personal TV screens, plus there’s an all-you-can eat buffet throughout the day, making it quite easy to spend a full day here (and well worth the basic $58/$78 entry price). Treatment to try Gateway to Vitality (members $118/hour, non-members $148/hour). The spa’s standard deep-tissue massage uses Shiatsu-style techniques – you can choose to use oil for a smoother, more relaxing treatment, or non-oil for more direct pressure-point massage. The price includes free roam of the spa’s facilities and buffet.
AWAY Spa at W Singapore
Definitely one of the funkier spas we checked out, the rainforest-inspired AWAY Spa at W Singapore oozes trendiness and elegance at the same time. The massage rooms are all bathed in a unique, soothing blue lighting and each comes with its own private outdoor shower. Guests can also make use of their many facilities, such as the warm vitality pool in their decompression area (complete with a hydro back bench and jet features) and a fun, experiential shower called Aqua, which has options like Tropical Storm and Cold Mist – with various water settings and light effects to match. Choose from treatments like customised massages, the luminous crystal facial, a bust reviving therapy to lift, firm and tone, a cleansing and exfoliating facial for men and even a tension-easing massage for sports buffs. Treatment to try AWAY Body Treat ($380/two hours). Using products from UK-based company Ila-Spa, the treatment starts off with an exfoliating body scrub with Himalayan salt crystals and a body mud wrap, while the second part involves an invigorating and tension-reducing massage. A special soundtrack by Ila is played throughout the session to complement the long, gentle movements of the masseuse.
Willow Stream Spa at The Fairmont Singapore
One of the more serious spa spaces in a hotel here, the Willow Stream Spa is an amenity-rich sanctuary located in the centre of town. A total of 35 treatment rooms serve up treatments grounded in Eastern and Western spa philosophies, alongside an array of fitness facilities, sauna and steam rooms, swimming pools and even tennis courts that’s spread over three levels and 50,000 square feet of floor space. Another plus for Willow Stream is the innovative weekly classes like aqua aerobics and helipad yoga (conducted on Swissotel The Stamford’s rooftop) open to the public, which offer access to the spa’s facilities on the day of the class. Treatment to try Power of the Sea ($249/90 min). Designed to detoxify and nourish skin, this treatment harnesses the goodness of sea minerals in a wrap and a jet bath in sea salt. The finish of a marine firming creme leaves skin feeling especially luscious after.
Auriga Spa at Capella
Nourish your body, mind and spirit at this multiple award-winning spa nestled in the quiet confines of Capella Singapore at Sentosa. Keeping a sharp focus on all things natural and organic – it’s the only spa to use products from The Organic Pharmacy – the space features nine cosy treatment rooms (each with a private alfresco garden), two of which are couple suites and one offering traditional Asian remedies. After your session, you can wander around (the staff are extremely polite and keep out of your way to give you privacy) to use the facilities here. Its hot and cold wet therapies include a herbal steam room, an ice fountain to cool down after a heated treatment, an experience shower and a calming vitality pool for neck and full body water massages – very pampering indeed. Other facilities include a relaxation lounge with unique sound wave chairs (where you can recline, sip tea, munch on nuts and read magazines for as long as you want) and a fitness centre with private instructors on hand. Treatments range from stimulating Balinese, Thai and Shiatsu massages and couple spa experiences to soothing therapies for mums-to-be, body sculpting sessions, body exfoliations and wraps, facials, manicures and much more. Treatment to try Senja Sunyi Massage ($230). Clocking in at 90 minutes, this soothing treatment uses rose and pomegranate body balm plus warm ‚Äòmoon stones’ with tui na and Javanese massage techniques to untangle your nerves and remove muscle kinks. You can ask for light, medium or strong pressure, and your therapist will gladly oblige.
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