More than ever, people find it hard to switch off: tuning out to-do lists, focusing on the present, or blocking out daily stimulants and distractions – yes, we’re looking at you Instagram – is something many of us struggle with in a tech-centric world. The Four Seasons Hong Kong’s spa offers an antidote with its comprehensive programme of wellness therapies which help reconnect guests with themselves and the world around them. One treatment, on their permanent spa menu, that truly delivers on this front is the Vital Energy Crystal Healing massage experience. CompareRetreats.com editor Rebecca Cairns explains what to expect from the therapy, and the benefits of the treatment.
The Vital Energy Crystal Healing treatment is part of the Four Seasons spa’s holistic healing treatment menu. The two-hour massage therapy combines crystals, touch therapy and singing bowls to harness healing energies. While the therapy has its roots in Ayurvedic medicine, you don’t have to know anything about the practice to reap the benefits of the treatment.
Like the other Four Seasons spa treatments, guests can enjoy full use of the spa facilities in the Vitality Lounge prior to the treatment: a sauna, steam room, rejuvenation pool and relaxation room with a selection of herbal waters and refreshing teas. Towels, robes and toiletries are all provided. It instantly sets the mood for a relaxing few hours.
Only two therapists on the Four Seasons staff are experienced enough to perform this holistic therapy. I met Shyju in a spa suite overlooking the harbour, where I was asked to choose a crystal from a selection on the massage table. Each one carries different ‘energies’ and promotes a different quality: the one I chose boosts self-confidence, and I was told to hold it while my feet were washed in a warm rose petal bath.
The foot bath is followed by a full body aromatherapy massage, which begins and ends with sound therapy using the Tibetan Singing Bowls. This is really what sets this treatment apart. Tibetan Singing Bowls have been used for over 2,000 years to aid relaxation and help induce a meditative state. It’s been suggested they reduce stress and anxiety, lower blood pressure, stimulate the immune system and provide deep relaxation – all the things you need when you’re over-stimulated and over-worked.
As someone who struggles to meditate, I was surprised at how quickly the singing bowls worked in slowing my mind down: for the duration of the treatment, I was in a meditative state which made the entire experience all the more restorative.
The massage itself dealt with a lot of my physical aches and pains. Where many masseuses have worked on my muscle knots with a continuous kneading technique – an experience I don’t think anyone enjoys at the time, but can feel the benefits after – Shyju instead would press down hard without moving on these tender points, release pressure and lightly massage, and repeat the process. I found it a far more relaxing experience, in keeping with the general theme of the treatment. Additionally, the oils used smelt incredible and didn’t irritate the sensitive eczema patches on my skin.
This treatment provides a unique mentally and emotionally restorative experience through stimulating multiple sensory layers: the smell of the aromatherapy oils, the touch of the massage, and the sound of the singing bowls, in addition to the beautiful setting of the spa room.
If you’re the kind of person who finds relaxation and switching off difficult, try out therapies like this one that includes sound therapy: it gives your mind something to focus on, and the vibrations themselves have a strangely relaxing effect. The Vital Energy Crystal Healing is an antidote to busy modern life – and luckily, it’s available in a zen urban spa right on your doorstep.