A new facelift treatment at the Ritz-Carlton Spa is inspired by a traditional Japanese massage technique. We cross the port to taste it.
There is no need to explain why people might want to set aside 90 minutes for a massage at this time. I can think of many reasons, to be locked up in this city for a year and a half, or the change of seasons and weather, to a general feeling of impending doom (although it might just be me) and the constant worry of experiencing a global pandemic.
Yet even in the best of circumstances, indulging yourself for an hour and a half, while still letting an expert work its magic by massaging all the tension, is a delicious indulgence. Maybe he’ll even achieve the impossible by defying age and stepping back in time.
My own reasons for visiting the Ritz-Carlton Spa are simple. While the still sweltering heat (with blue skies, so much sunshine, and more than the occasional thunderstorm) may make us think otherwise, fall is almost upon us. And it’s precisely this time of year that my skin goes from its normal oily and blemish-prone state to dehydrated, sensitive to dry patches and again, unfortunately, prone to blemishes.
No matter how many times I rationalize my skin care regimen and go wrong, I’ve perfected it to perfection, the weather is changing – and with it, the stress on the skin, dull complexion and skin tone. appearance of the texture.
So to relax and revitalize my face and skin, I head to the Ritz-Carlton Spa to discover its latest offer. This care center is located on the 116th floor of the hotel, which requires a little trip to take me from the first hall – on the ninth floor – to the main hall on the 103rd.
Finally, after changing elevators, I emerge into the spa, where I am greeted with a cup of hot Chinese tea and check in, filling out forms to detail points of tension and worry on my body and, inevitably, if I I risk being positive for Covid. I am then led through a maze of dark corridors to a locker room, where I put on a fluffy bathrobe and slippers before going to wait for my specialist.
This lovely lady leads me down another dimly lit hallway to one of the spa’s 11 lavish treatment rooms above the harbor. Here, with the city stretching out beneath me, I’m entitled to a foot bath while my specialist helps me choose the scents and oils I would like her to use.
I am testing the new Natural Kobido Lift treatment, which uses serums, moisturizers, balms and oils from the holistic beauty brand ESPA from the UK. Its Tri-Active Resilience Pro-Biome range is luxurious and natural, with antioxidant properties that promise to strengthen the skin’s resilience to modern lifestyle stressors, such as pollution and bad weather.
Before I start, my specialist scans my skin using a blue UV lamp – not the most pleasant experience, as she inspects acne scars on my cheek, hyperpigmentation on my neck (admittedly not some part where I always remember to apply my skincare products) and the deep dark circles under my “tired” eyes.
To begin the facial, which takes its name from the traditional Japanese Kobido massage, I undergo a combination of fast and slow hand movements across my face, neck and chest, which are promised to “detoxify, tone, sculpt and relax. “. As I am told several times to relax throughout the treatment, the jury is out on whether I am really able to relax.
I’m told the different massage speeds improve deep circulation, remove dead cells, and encourage elastin and collagen production (in tandem with ESPA’s Resilience-Building Moisturizing Collection). My specialist uses just enough pressure on my face and chest, so it’s not painful at all.
Towards the end of the treatment, a menthol infused mask is placed on my face for about 15 minutes, during which I fidget and try to calm my racing spirit. I can’t do it, although the feeling of freshness is pleasant and not too strong.
The verdict? After the procedure, I see little or no signs of bloating or puffiness on my face and my skin is definitely firmer. I also don’t experience any side effects after the treatment, such as red spots of anger or inflammation. However, as my skin is a problematic organ, I feel like I have some irritation on my cheeks and chin – it looks a bit worn out where
I have old scars, whereas my pores seem a little more “accentuated” than before.
The 90-minute Natural Kobido Lift treatment is available until December 31 at HK $ 2,100 on weekdays and HK $ 2,250 on weekends and holidays, plus 10% service.
To book call +852 2263 2040 or by email at [email protected]