We love our massages while on holiday, at least according to research by the Hilton group in collaboration with YouGov, which revealed that more than a third of holidaymakers from the UAE – 35 per cent to be precise – are likely to seek out a "relaxation break", most notably a spa or beach destination. But if your next holiday feels like a lifetime away, or if you're travelling with someone who prefers adventure sports (13 per cent), or shopping and sightseeing (12 per cent), here are some new, locally available face and body treatments and packages for top-to-toe care. Let the unwinding begin.
A radiant complexion can make all the difference to your mood. Mix up your regular facial with a brightening peptide-based treatment. The spa at Anantara Eastern Mangroves in Abu Dhabi brought skincare brand HydroPeptide to the UAE last month. According to the company: “Peptides are messenger molecules that work on a cellular level to increase hydration, reduce lines and wrinkles, and enhance the skin’s natural luminosity.” The 30-minute mini custom peel uses products infused with enzymes, peptides and hyaluronic acid that nourish and hydrate the skin, while the 80-minute anti-wrinkle HydroPeptide facial is for those who typically have very little downtime, and includes peptides, growth factors and proteins, which work to firm up the skin. The plant-based products are free from preservatives, perfumes and additives, and treatments start from Dh440.
The spa at Address Boulevard in Dubai, meanwhile, has a rather exotic-sounding Lava Shell massage. The iridescent tiger-striped clam shells are sourced from the Philippines. When heated, they emit ions of calcium, which are then transferred to your body through massage, and help to soothe muscles and reduce inflammation. The 60-minute treatments costs Dh418.
If contact massages and hot objects aren’t quite your idea of relaxation in the sweltering heat, sample a full body wrap instead. A cocooning therapy, the idea is to leave you feeling nourished and comforted. On offer this month is Address Dubai Marina’s 60-minute detox marine algae wrap, which is down to Dh250 from Dh500 on weekdays. The session begins with a cooling bamboo scrub to eliminate grime and dead skin, followed by a marine algae wrap. The mineral-rich seaweed helps the body to relax while activating the cells and purifying the skin, so you feel at once relaxed and rejuvenated.
Night owls, or those who work super-long hours, can avail themselves of the Twilight Experience until midnight every day at The Shangri-La Dubai this summer. The head-to-toe massage makes use of sleep-inducing essential oils and includes a complimentary sleep kit to take home. It costs Dh480 for a 60-minute session and Dh680 for the 90-minute session with a facial. If you have an entire day to spare midweek, head to Dubai and treat yourself and a friend to Palace Downtown’s One Good Treatment Deserves Another offer, ongoing until September 30. For every 50-minute facial or body massage you gift (which start from Dh578), you can access the spa’s hammam, bathhouse, steam room and Jacuzzi for the entire day. The offer is open to men on Mondays and women on Tuesdays.
Tips & Toes, meanwhile, has introduced the Big Chill package across all its branches for the summer, ongoing until August 14. This entitles you to a complimentary add-on treatment or discounts at the start of each week. Serene Sunday includes a free 20-minute hand or foot reflexology session upon the purchase of an Anesi Expression Correction facial. Monday Magic offers 50 per cent off on eyelash extensions, and a range of body and hair treatments, including full hair colour. Finally, get 25 per cent off on any service for you and a friend on Two’s Day Tuesday – we recommend the super-soothing almond-extract pedicure and leg massage (Dh168), so your feet are good and ready for when you’re trekking through a mountain or a mall.