Luxe and luscious at ESPA Spa at the Peninsula Beijing

July 25, 2010

Photo courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons user DearEdward

BEIJING, CHINA – Start by rubbing with ginger, baste well in salt and oil, and then warm fully in a thermal chamber. It may sound like a recipe for roast chicken, but actually it’s all part of an indulgent day at lap-of-luxury ESPA Spa at the Peninsula Beijing.

The ever-so-sophisticated facility has built its reputation on pairing the Peninsula’s trademark classic luxury with tasteful nods to the local spa culture. In Beijing, this means that massages and body treatment “ceremonies” incorporate Asian holistic philosophies–you can indulge in a Chinese Meridian Massage to balance your yin and yang or slough off negative qi with a salt and oil full body exfoliation. To get your energy flowing even more freely, relax in the “thermal suite” with saunas, crystal steam rooms, and massage showers.

Though these treatment opportunities are lovely, at ESPA it’s the luxe facilities and add-ons that really “wow.” You’ll find 12 plush treatment rooms that evoke imperial-style luxury with dark woods, intricate carvings, and delicate silk cushions. There are even private spa suites for two available, which come with a steam room and double bath. The cushy relaxation room boasts ultra-soft beds with down quilts. All this was much appreciated when I visited, just a half hour after I had checked into the hotel, following my 14-hour flight from New York. (If only I had such pampering when I returned home!)

If you’re looking to get in a little exercise, you’ll love the modern gym and indoor heated swimming pool, which is glassed in for natural light. And for those who want to beautify, there are facial, hairdressing, and manicure services. Don’t just pop in for a quickie massage–come for an afternoon (full-day “spa journey” packages are also available) of luxuriating. And be sure to arrive at least an hour before your treatment so you can take full advantage of the facilities.

When you’re being rubbed, oiled, and warmed with such expert care in such swish surrounds, I found it hard to do anything other than breathe – seriously. And if feeling a bit like a roast chicken has aroused your appetite, not to worry. There’s an onsite Asian tea room serving healthy spa bites and restorative juices and teas, not to mention the delicious Huang Ting serving up Cantonese delights just a few floors away. A light meal was the perfect endcap to a classic Peninsula indulgence.

Read more about ESPA Spa in our Beijing Guide.

8 Jing Yu Hu Tong
Peninsula Hotel
Wangfujing, Beijing
(86) 010-6510-6090

RL contributed to this post

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