Jul 26, 2012|
Over the weekend, I was given an absolutely amazing weight loss tip. Really, it was unbelievable. So astoundingly simple, yet utterly effective. Oh, and VERY Hong Kong (and before you ask, no, it’s not weight loss via doing massive amounts of recreational drugs).
Right, now that I have sufficiently whetted your appetite, do you want to know what this revolutionary slimming miracle is?
Just stake some money on it.
Over lunch in Sai Kung the other day, I met up with a friend who was looking amazing. Really, he had gone from being somewhat overweight (sorry M.B., if you’re reading this!) to looking downright svelte since I’d last seen him. I complimented him on his new trim physique as he ordered a skinless chicken breast (no fries, and certainly no beer). He laughed and told me that his amazing weight loss came down to a bet he’d made with a few of his friends who were also feeling their belt buckles pinch a little too tightly.
With a friend’s wedding coming up in the Philippines and formal wear that had to be wriggled into, they made a pact: whoever shed the least amount of weight before the wedding has to buy dinner for eight people at the Shangri-La Boracay—at a cost of HK$10,000. Being fans of the occasional poker game (and the odd Macau gambling spree), the wager has caught their imagination, and now they’re racing to their weigh-in every week pounds lighter.
I love it. The stakes are high, but you stand to gain a delicious meal (or cold, hard cash) after your weight-loss regime. And if you lose? Well, $10,000 is less than what you’d pay for a course of slimming treatments at a spa. Plus, weight loss is hard and boring, so why not make things fun (and a little competitive) when you can?
With summer underway, hotels are offering tons of mini spa staycation deals to draw in customers mid-week. Check out the Grand Hyatt’s Plateau Spa “Summer in Plateau” deal, which includes two hours of treatments (a 60-minute massage and a 60-minute hydrating facial), a complimentary drink at the Waterfall Bar on their roof deck, plus a day pass to their outdoor pool sauna and fitness studio. That’s a whole day of chilling out Hyatt-style for $1,950. The offer is available on weekdays from now until August 30. If you’re feeling especially hot and bothered, the spa has also just launched a 90-minute peppermint body treatment, which includes a 30-minute peppermint scrub, plus a 60-minute peppermint oil massage, all for $1,300 (weekdays and weekends). That tingly deal is available until September 30.
Plateau, 11/F Grand Hyatt Hotel, 1 Harbour Rd., Wan Chai, 2584-7688.
I love foot massage. You love foot massage. In fact, anyone who doesn’t enjoy a reflexology session, that quintessentially Hong Kong pampering pastime, must be dead inside or something. But there’s a new sectional massage trend coming out of Japan—and it’s focused on your head. I went to try a session at Odo, which has a stable following of Japanese expats, and now founder Rumi Odo is looking to introduce the concept to a wider audience. She explained that, as a result of office work, most of us store tension in our scalp, neck and eyes, and therefore it makes sense to pay special attention to our head area. The head spa process begins with a half-hour ultra-relaxing head massage where you get to lie down in a dimmed treatment room. Odo asks you to select one of five scented creams, which she imports herself from Bali. Afterwards, you’re brought out into the salon area where your hair is steamed for 20 minutes or so, allowing the cream to penetrate deeper into your hair follicles, and then your hair is rinsed and gently dried. A session with a 30-minute massage is $350, while a 45-minute massage is $450. There are optional extras available, such as a hair consultation before the treatment, where Rumi will look at your scalp with a microscope and assess its health ($50), or if you want a more thorough rinse, you can add on a shampoo for $100. I’m totally besotted with the treatment. Head massage is always my favorite part of a spa treatment, but I find that they’re often too short and patchy in quality, with too much hair-tugging and not enough tension-relieving. The space is small and Rumi is a one-woman show, so be sure to make an appointment first.
Odo Head Spa is at 9/F, Pennington Commercial Building, 17 Pennington St., Causeway Bay. Call 9010-1586 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for appointments.
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