Jenny Hewett tries the Elemis Absolute Spa Ritual at Anantara Spa on the Palm Jumeirah.
This two-hour treatment begins with a flower foot ritual and your choice of either a deep tissue or stress release massage followed by a customised Elemis facial.
Step by step
Having underestimated the time it would take to get to Palm Jumeirah’s East frond, we arrive late. The welcome area is massive and Thai-style elephants line the somewhat clinical open-air hallway to the treatment rooms. Though having called ahead to notify the spa, our tardiness is not met with much reprieve, nor is there any time for pleasantries. The therapist, however, is sporting a much sunnier disposition and begins a foot-cleansing ritual. After going over the biggest concerns, we decide on a stress release massage using frangipani oil with medium to strong pressure. She impressively explains the techniques she will use (no forearm strokes or knuckling) and begins on our legs, then moves to our back and arms. Now face up, she starts prepping us for the Elemis facial. After cleansing and positioning the steamer she begins the extraction, then a wax-like mask is applied, which is peeled off like a second skin. She finishes with a scalp massage before we’re led to the relaxation room for ginger tea and dates, which really hit the spot.
We’re much more relaxed than when we arrived and our newly hydrated skin glows all afternoon.
• The ginger tea is to die for.
• The Elemis products are gentle on sensitive skin.
• The spa feels a little sterile and disjointed; it’s not the most idyllic.
• Though we arrived late, the welcome was cold and rushed, as if staff were greatly inconvenienced.
• It seems considerably overpriced.
Dhs1,300 for 120 minutes. Anantara Dubai The Palm, Palm Jumeirah (04 567 8888).