Dubai spa review

<em>Time Out</em> turns a frown upside down with a facial treatment at the Jasmine Spa

The frown thrust across my face at the thought of going to Al Barsha probably wasn’t the best of starting points for any facial. But my brow unfurrowed as swiftly as my taxi sped along the jam-free roads and easily located the three-week old Barsha based Grand Millennium Hotel.

Smile lines followed as I walked into the impressive lobby and discovered a plush, bustling hotel that, not unlike Dr Who’s phone box with the addition of some chandeliers, transported me miles from the shaking drills and creaking cranes outside.

The spa itself is small but complete, with a sheltered al fresco pool area and a handful of rooms each boasting various skin-ravishing and fat-galvanising gadgets and machines.

Lacra, the spa’s matronly Romanian manager gave me the once-over with her beady professional eye before deciding I was in need of a Plantomer Lift-Off Mask, a gentle treatment that would soothe, heal, strengthen and deeply hydrate my mug, all apparently due to its high seaweed content. What she didn’t say was that it also strongly resembled Jim Carrey’s mask in the 1994 film of the same name. Lying on my lap like an unbroken orange peel (but in green), I was very tempted to take it home for bad face days.

Lacra was doing everything in her power to ensure those never happened again, however, as she applied (named and explained) the dozens of different creams, lotions and toners and gave me an extra thorough (read: painful) pore-by-pore examination.

Feeling cleansed, revitalised and very, very sleepy, Lacra quickly talked me through the products that would work well with my skin type before sending me on my drowsy way. Never would we have thought ‘building site Barsha’ could be home to such a cosy, yet luxurious, pampering oasis.

Plantomer Lift-Off Mask, Dhs550, Jasmine Spa, Grand Millennium Hotel, 04 429 9999, www.millenniumhotels.com.

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