On Cloud Nine in District 1. My first ever massage experience.
Despite having travelled in SE Asia for over 15 years, I never once had a proper massage until just last month. I’m not sure why – I guess I just didn’t understand the appeal of lying there, doing nothing. I mean, surely it can’t be that relaxing, can it? Well, the answer to that is yes, it can. Very.
While staying at the amazing Park Hyatt Saigon (separate post about that here), my fiancée and I decided to check out the hotel’s famous Xuan Spa. My fiancée actually studied massage therapy in Hawaii, and so she was keen to try it. After checking in, we booked ourselves in for two Xuan Signature Muscle Release massages later that evening, then went out to explore the city.
The massage itself lasted one hour, but the overall experience was about 90 minutes due to all sorts of added extras such as drinking fragrant lemongrass tea, and choosing what oils we wanted.
The Xuan Spa Manager spoke perfect English and was able to clearly explain the concept behind the spa – one that embraces the Mekong Delta’s essences, such as fresh herbs, local grains and fruits. We were told our particular signature massages would use a traditional deep kneading technique, and I chose a wild-grown ginger oil to complement it.
The Spa interior was calming and colonial in style. Deep, dark woods were accentuated by soft lighting, and everything was of a very high quality – right down to the beautiful teapot we were served lemongrass tea with. This was the perfect start to the spa session, with the ginger candies also adding a nice touch.
Once we finished our tea we made our way to our separate treatment rooms and enjoyed a hot foot bath made from ginger, lemongrass and cinnamon. My therapist told me she had worked at Park Hyatt Saigon for nearly ten years, which says something about the quality of the establishment. It is always good when staff are happy to work at a hotel for such a long time, building their experience.
And so as the massage started, the photos stopped.
My thoughts on it?
This being my first massage, I really didn’t know what to expect but it totally blew me away. I am now converted! Despite the massage being pretty vigorous, every muscle in my body felt relaxed and towards the end I actually fell asleep. When I told my fiancée this she said that is the sign of a truly good massage!
My first massage has set the bar high. I would definitely recommend Xuan Spa if you are in Ho Chi Minh City, or lucky enough to be staying at Park Hyatt Saigon.
Follow in our footsteps: