Hammam is a Moroccan steam room that has its roots in the ancient Greek Roman bathhouse culture. Unlike the intense, stifling heat in a sauna, however, a hammam envelops you in a gentle warmth that raises the body temperature enough to stimulate the immune system, detoxify the body and relax the mind.
The typical hamman rituals are gommage – an exfoliation process using beldi black soap to remove dead skin cells and impurities – and body envelopments. For first timers, you should try out the ‘My Favourite Concubine’, a treatment that takes you through the gommage, rhassoul body mask and an aromatic massage with argan oils. If you are visiting the spa with your partner, the ‘Royal Couple Hammam’ will help you unwind with a gommage, Moorish body envelopment, aromatic massage and an Atlantic Sea Salt bath fragranced with Jasmine, Ylang Ylang and Sandalwood, all enjoyed in the privacy of a couple room. The spa also offers to host private parties for you to let down your hair among friends and family.
If you are thinking of having some French Moroccan cuisine, the Hammam Bistro serves up a fine fare. This month will see a special Valentine’s Menu that features delectable dishes such as quail with carrot and orange pomade, lamb mechoui and Moroccan ratatouille, and a seafood bouillabaisse. It also comes with a Valentine’s chocolate plate and complimentary corkage. The restaurant ambience is cosy, with a warm colour palette set against pretty Marrakech-designed tiles, arched windows and intricate lanterns.
Hammam Bangsar (03 2282 2180); Hammam Publika, (03 6201 0881); Hammam Bistro (03 6201 0882/www.hammamspas.com).
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