CFMichaels

5 SPAs 5 Days: The Face

Tue December 16, 2014

With a wild shriek of joy followed by some pretty serious research, I recently accepted a pretty serious mission: enjoy five different spa experiences of your choosing in the span of five days! It was a harrowing drill narrowing it to five, there are hundreds (probably thousands) of spas and spa-like venues throughout Bangkok (oh boohoo). But in the end, the draw and deciding factor for me, first and foremost, is always the visual package – the interiors, the exteriors, the essential luxe and lovely design details.

The chosen ones I’ll share this week were selected for 1) their diversity in setting and design aesthetic, 2) their intriguing description of treatments, and 3) the potential to experience some personal new frontiers in spa going.

First up, The Face Spa…

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

The approach from the street. It’s hard to imagine an outdoor calm could exist in the middle of the cacophonous city sound that is Bangkok, but The Face has managed it well with an enclave of traditional Thai teak houses planted in a lush tropical green. I’m already loving this week’s opener.

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

Directly inside, a Thai Spirit House – a Southeast Asian staple to homes and businesses, it serves as a holding post for spirits, where offerings are made to ward off unpleasant things.

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

I take the stairs to the left and find reception at the top.

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

A simply arranged mix makes up the small waiting area, with an interestingly fashioned light fixture to top it off. After a quick check in, I’m escorted straight ahead…

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

To my own private little teak house!  No bells, no whistles, just pure organic loveliness, and undoubtedly the most unique “spa room” I’ve ever been assigned to.

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

I can’t think of any spa treatment I’ve had across Southeast Asia that didn’t begin with a foot wash.  A Hindu belief that the feet are the least sacred and the most unclean part of the body translates to this widely practiced ritual (I agree, and I’m all for it).

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

It’s slightly unfortunate that the inside of treatment areas are so dark, the iPad did its best. A flat bed on the floor covered in a colourful Thai textile, a small table of scents, and a stunning pair of huge and heavy sliding carved teak panels that led to a small washroom area.

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

A tented shower curtain sits atop a huge hammered aluminium basin inside the prep area – such a singular defining feature.

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

My prearranged choice from the spa menu was the Wat Pho Healer package, “…based upon ancient Ayurvedic principles brought to Thailand by King Rama III and inscribed in Bangkok’s famous Wat Pho temple… ”   

Here’s what went on behind closed doors:

-30 minute detoxifying salt powder and black sesame seed body scrub  Skin is scrubbed for thirty minutes, with an abrasive, eliminating those nasty havoc wreaking toxins.  The follow-up shower under the lovely tent was terrific.

-2 hour herbal compress and Thai massage  Essentially they “apply,” and “tap” you with, a hot cheesecloth filled with scented herbs, interspersed with true Thai massage that characteristically contorts you into painfully beneficial positions.

-30 minute head massage  A welcomed reprieve.

I left my little teak house with the notion that I’d been through something, maybe even healed!

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

I finished with a quick spin around the grounds and a look at the restaurants that are also part of The Face experience.  Above, a magnificent arched sliding glass door opens to the Thai restaurant.

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

Below, entrance to the private dining room. The engraved Face on the sliders is a beautiful touch.

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

Entrance to the Indian restaurant.

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

And with that it was farewell to Face, a fantastic traditional Thai opener to SPA Week.

Now back to reality, ready to tackle day two tomorrow!

CFMichaels Spa Week Day 1

Face Spa Bangkok

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