Spa Virgin

Are you a first-time spa goer? Don’t panic The SPA Traveller is here to help with our essential guide to spa etiquette…

As spa breaks are becoming more popular for hen weekends and girls’ getaways you may have been invited along, but if it’s your first time, you may be feeling more apprehensive than excited.

"A good spa experience is more than just the treatment, it's the whole encounter from when you arrive to when you leave..." so to ensure you enjoy your experience all you have to do is follow our guide:


Spa Etiquette

• A spa is quiet place where people go to relax and rejuvenate.

• Turn off your mobile phone and Blackberry when you arrive. A ringing phone in the spa defeats the relaxation benefits and prevents you from switching off from the outside world.

• Prior to beginning your treatment you will probably be asked to fill in a health consultation form.

• Free your mind of all your thoughts and immerse yourself in the treatment you're about to enjoy. Let your mind and body take the break they need!

• You need time to relax and unwind. Try to arrive at least 30 minutes before your spa appointment so you have time to check in, change into your robe and slippers, and relax. All clothes are placed in a locker and most spas provide paper pants which are worn during your treatment or you can wear a swimming costume.

• Take advantage of the luxury facilities most spas have, especially the saunas and steam baths, and hot and cold plunge pools. Most leading spas also offer relaxation areas and chill out zones for you to unwind and relax before and after treatments.

• Shower before your spa treatment to remove sweat if you've arrived late, and to wash off any heated pool or chlorinated hot tub water.

• A hot shower can also relax you before your spa treatment and make it more enjoyable.

• During your treatment you will be covered with a sheet or warm towel and only the part of the body being massaged will be exposed. .

• Thai massage is mostly done with all your clothes on, and is often recommended if you feel uncomfortable with nudity during a Swedish massage. However, it is not the best choice for first-time spa-goers.

• If you schedule two treatments together, get a massage before your facial. A body treatment should go before your massage.

• If you’re uncomfortable with anything during your treatment – massage pressure, music, the temperature, don't suffer in silence - make your feelings known, as this way your therapist can adapt her technique to suit your needs.

• Ensure your therapist thoroughly explains the treatment you're having and the types of products being used.

• You can talk during the treatment or remain quiet and snooze. The therapist will follow your lead.

• Book your treatments well in advance. If you're going on holiday, don't wait until you get to your destination to book your treatments or you may be disappointed and not get the times or treatments you want. And, some treatments may be fully booked and you'll miss out...

• Think carefully about what you want to achieve from a treatment, so you can maximise the experience. For example do you want to target cellulite, de-stress or de-stress.

• Tipping: If you liked the treatment 10-20 per cent is generally accepted. If you are on all-inclusive spa package, ask if the tip was included in the package. Tipping is expected in North America and on cruises, but not so in Europe, Africa and Asia where it is solely at your discretion. Gratuities or 'service' charges are often included automatically in the bill in the Middle East.


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