Just a little ways off from Madinat Jumeirah’s Al Qasr Hotel, designed to replicate a Sheikh’s summer residence, is a tranquil sanctuary dedicated to the wellness of the mind and the body. One can reach Talise Spa by car through a private road, by a abra, a water taxi from Al Qasr, or by golf cart from the main entrance. Whichever you choose, the effect is magical – as you make your way towards the entrance of the spa, you pass through a variety of luscious plants and palm trees evoking the calming ambiance of a tropical oasis. Upon entry, friendly staff attentively greet you and bring you refreshing hand towels and soothing cucumber water. I’ve always found the lobby of Jumeirah’s Talise Spa to exude an air of pristine order, calm and professionalism. The venue is more than just a spa – it is a wellness center dedicated to the thorough examination of how to effectively balance the mind and the body. Wellness scans, a full-time naturopath, yoga classes and a variety of spa treatments make Talise Spa the epitome of care for the mind and the body. I finished my cucumber water and made my way through the multitude of unique treatment rooms designed in the manner of small, private oases, to arrive for my treatment – a Balance Facial.
There’s an incredible aura of calm and tranquility which takes place as one makes their way through the club’s stunning gardens and tropical landscapes. Perhaps the feeling is further heightened by the fact that Dubai is so devoid of natural surroundings that we become so used to the hub-bub of daily city life. The surroundings certainly provide such an escape and seem to take one far away from the UAE’s often chaotic and frenetic energy.
Upon entry into my treatment room, a Thai therapist asked me a series of questions related to my physical wellbeing. She then examined my face thoroughly in order to decide upon the proper application of cleansing creams and ointments. The Balance Facial, she told me, is a deep cleansing facial designed for congested or imbalanced skin types – thus perfect for me. The facial uses Sodashi products – a 100 per cent natural skin care line free of chemicals which use therapeutic grade plant essences and extracts to provide balancing, nourishing and purifying results. The facial also incorporates Argiletz Clay in order to assist in refining pores to leave the skin feeling clear and balanced. I was sold.
My therapist was lovely. You could see she knew her trade inside and out and went so far as to advice me on proper diet and skin cleansing techniques. She first cleansed my feet and then brought me over to the treatment table. She first began by cleansing my face with a cream-based wash and toner. Then she applied a face polish and a Jojoba face scrub which felt tantalizing and refreshing. My face was then treated to a purifying clay mask which was left on for 20 minutes while she in turn proceeded to give me a relaxing scalp and hand massage. The face mask was removed and my skin was cleansed once again and then provided with a lymphatic drainage massage which, I was told, assists to decongest the skin and reduce inflammation. Balancing moisturizer was applied on my face and neck along with eye cream which the therapist swore by and asserted that I must wear every single day.
When we finished, I was handed a mirror to examine the result. I was hesitant as more often than not one comes away from a facial with a host of brutal-looking red marks and splotches where the skin had been worked and scrubbed in order to get clean. Here was skin was the opposite – it looked balanced, cleaned and it glowed beautifully. A few days later the same glow was still apparent and it has been ever since. I am, of course, following my therapist’s urgent recommendations to use eye cream day and night, a good toner and cream cleanser and drink hot lemon water every morning to purify the system.
This was an exceptional facial – one of the best I’ve had in years. The staff was exceptionally knowledgeable and attentive and the surroundings were dreamlike and calming.
Talise Spa, Al Qasr, +971 4 3666818. The spa is open everyday from 9am to 10pm. www.jumeirah.com