As we make our way towards what we hope will be a healthier and happier New Year, one thing we are really yearning for after the stresses of 2020 is a massage. And not just any massage, but a really luxurious one – where you know you’re going to be treated to a calming ambience, opulent tea, aromatic custom-blended essential oils and, most important of all, the hands of a massage therapist that knows exactly what your body needs.
When you visit a Shangri-La spa, you can trust that you’ll get an experience that matches just that. But a blissful massage offers so much more than just a chance to relax – there is a bounty of health and wellbeing benefits that comes from the hour of indulgence, too. In fact, Shangri-La’s signature spa treatment – the Asian Signature Blend Massage – combines the benefits of four different Asian massage techniques: Malaysian, Chinese, Balinese and Thai.
Here, we take a closer look at the unique health and wellbeing benefits of these four different types of Asian massage.
Traditional Malay Massage is a branch of indigenous traditional Malay medicine that is seen to be so effective it’s integrated into Malaysia’s primary health care system. It focuses on applying pressure points to different areas of the body using long, careful strokes. The massage helps to remove body tension and fatigue, promote blood flow and oxygen circulation and stimulate the immune system, all which helps re-energise the mind and body.
Chinese massage has been a form of medical treatment for 4,000 years. It hones in on acupuncture-focused massage techniques – such as twisting, pulling, turning, pushing, kneading – to release tension and pain at specific areas of the body, such as the neck and lower back. Chinese massage also improves blood circulation, promotes healthy lactation, helps treat muscle pain and can reduce inflammation, resulting in faster injury recovery.
Inspired by Chinese acupressure and Ayurveda, Balinese massage offers a deep tissue treatment through gentle stretching, acupressure and reflexology. Along with stimulating blood flow and oxygen, it can help with sleep disorders, rebalancing immunity levels, and relieving tension and migraines. Balinese massages improve the overall Qi within your body and are one of the best for relaxation.
With origins traced to Ancient India, Thai massage has been around for over 2,500 years. Incorporating Ayurvedic principles and postures inspired by yoga, it follows the designated lines (“sen”) of the body using stretching, pulling, pressing, and rocking techniques. This helps relieve tension, improve flexibility, boost energy, relieve headaches and stimulate blood circulation. The result is a body that feels lighter and more relaxed.
Bespoke Choice of Aroma Oils
The Shangri-La also have their own blends of aroma oils including from their brand ZENTS. You can choose one or a blend of two massage oils for your massage treatment, depending on how you feel and what you need. These include:
Sun: Calming and comforting scents of vanilla, sandalwood, and amber.
Ore: Euphoric and stimulating with clove, orris, and ylang-ylang.
Oolong: Energizing and balancing combo of lavender, lime, and oolong tea.
Mandarin: Warming and invigorating Asian notes of ginger, mandarin and cardamom.
While we’ll have to wait a bit longer until a trip to the spa is back on the cards in Hong Kong, when it is, you can book yourself in for a wellness journey at Island Shangri-La, Kowloon Shangri-La, or The Kerry.