Bali Bliss: Our Experience At The Ritz Carlton Spa

The incorporation of a sound element during the Thalgo facial took the client experience to the next level.

With its tropical weather, fresh food, friendly people and endless heritage and culture (plus an impressive focus on sustainability and waste reduction) what’s not to love about Bali? It is for some of these reasons and more that Bali is home to some of the most impressive and memorable day spas and wellness resorts we’ve seen yet. Absolutely breathtaking and aesthetically unique in their own right in terms of style, offerings, colours and structure etc., the luxurious spas of Bali also boast a very special something – an incredible attention to detail, and those ‘special touches’, from the friendliest of welcomes to every slow and deliberate touch, the abundance of hand-brewed tea and healthy snacks to the customisable treatments. Above all, you can see plain as day that every therapist you encounter has a genuine desire to please, to deliver the very best they can, and to ensure that every visitor leaves as happy as can possibly be.

The SPA+CLINIC team were lucky enough to visit ‘the island of the gods’ to experience this incredible spa culture, in order to bring you insider details of what we truly believe may be some of the best spa locations in the world – starting at the world renowned Ritz Carlton. Online Editor Mala McAlpin and Editor Nadine Dilong tried two of the Ritz Carlton Spa’s famous Thalgo treatments, this was their experience:

Below the cliffs of the hotel’s main entrance, the Ritz Carlton Spa offers an oasis hugged by lush greenery, and we pass several large and beautiful coy ponds and peace-inspiring statues before entering the reception area. Water is a source of cleansing and renewal across cultures, and in Bali, the ocean has long played an important role. Honouring this belief in both its setting and services, the Ritz Carlton has also chosen a marine-based skincare brand for its spa, Thalgo, which has been harnessing the ocean’s ingredients and their extraordinary potential for over 40 years. We are instantly refreshed with some iced ginger tea and essential oil-infused cold hand towels in the waiting room whilst completing our consultation cards, before our ultra-friendly therapists come over to greet us by name and introduce themselves. We are then ushered back through another Zen garden or two and up a flight of stairs to the treatment rooms.

Thalgo Indoceane
Inside the large and ambiently lit space, I am led to the well-appointed dressing room and encouraged to swap out my outfit for a thick waffle robe, disposable underwear and a pair of woven bamboo slippers, before my therapist walks me through the Thalgo products about to be used on me for the treatment. I then take a seat on the lounge for the foot ritual that precedes every treatment. This includes a warm water bath decorated with rose petals, the application of a sea salt scrub, followed by a dowsing and massaging of a whole fresh lime – an unusual but authentic touch. Once dried, I am invited to make myself comfortable face down on the Balinese sarong-adorned treatment bed. After my therapist has checked that I’m happy with my positioning, the temperature of the room and the volume of the music, the treatment commences, signalled with a soft bell chime.

The Indoceane body treatment, which utilises all Thalgo products, sees the therapist apply an oil solution to the skin first before using a salt and sugar scrub to gently but effectively exfoliate and improve circulation and lymph flow. The back of each leg is done one after the other, then my back before turning over. A soft pillow is placed under my head immediately after I turn, and a subtly fragranced eye mask placed over my eyes. The fronts of legs are carried out, then upper torso including breasts (after permission was sought prior of course!) before I’m back in the dressing room to shower. A divine softness and floral scent lingers on my skin from the scrub. Once I’ve returned to the freshly-made bed, I’m face down again for a divine back massage. Pleasantly hot, fragrant patchouli based oil is drizzled over my skin before my therapist commences with a medium pressure massage as per my request. She kneels over me on top of the bed to ensure pressure is evenly dispersed, using a combination of hands, forearm and elbow strokes. Once the treatment ends (again, signalled with a soft bell chime) I am invited back downstairs for a different variety of detox tea and some handmade sesame, seaweed and caramel biscuits.

Thalgo Heart Of The Ocean
After the beautiful foot ritual, my therapist guides me to the very comfortable treatment bed and continues to wrap my hair in a cloth – not just to protect it from the products used during my facial, but she starts the treatment by gliding her hands over the cloth around my head, which also covers my ears. This creates a sound akin to that of crashing waves at the beach, a small detail that sets the tone for this facial perfectly as Thalgo is a French skincare brand famous for their micronised Marine Algae, sourcing only the highest quality ingredients found in the ocean. My face is double cleansed before dead skin is lifted using a physical exfoliation product with soft beads. Gentle but thorough circular motions leave my skin squeaky clean, and after about 45 minutes, a thick soothing and hydrating mask is applied and left to work its magic while my therapist indulges me in a relaxing scalp, neck, and shoulder massage. The mask is removed using a soft and lightly fragranced towel before a protective moisturiser rich in antioxidants is applied to set me up for the day. My skin is left feeling intensely hydrated and supple.

We are then invited to enjoy the rest of the spa’s facilities before we head off on our way. We are shown to the locker rooms, where we are given an innovative electronic bracelet instead of locker key that allows guests to wear it into water and not misplace it. The lockers are filled with robes, slippers, and towels, and we change before exploring the rooms beyond. There are several hydrotherapy options available to hotel guests – first is the Hydro Vital pools, with several different installations including massage jets, resistance corridor, outdoor showers and more. Then there is the Balinese pool, a particularly lush private area surrounded by lounge chairs, canopied beds, and lush forest – where we’re lucky enough to spot a few playful monkeys. We head inside to the Prana Relaxation Lounge, which is filled with individual ergonomic chairs and sheer dividing curtains, plus iced tea, water, and even dried chickpeas to nibble on – the perfect end to our Ritz-Carlton Spa experience.

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