The venue: For us city-dwellers, Shangri-La Dubai is an ideally located space to get to after a long day at work, situated so conveniently on Shaikh Zayed Road. The CHI Spa, on the fourth floor, sits next door to the hotel’s busy gym. While the reception area can get a little noisy and jarring because of its proximity to the gym, once you enter the main area, CHI turns into an oasis of calm, with its oriental trimmings and soothing music. The relaxation area, right next to the locker rooms, is a beautiful, mosaic-tiled section, equipped with three plunge pools, set to varying temperatures, as well as a steam room and a sauna.
The treatment: We picked the Brightening and Plumping facial, a luxurious 75-minute treatment, which reportedly uses mainly Biologique Recherche products, the French biological skincare brand, coveted by beauty addicts, including yours truly. The therapist began with a two-step cleansing ritual, followed by a light facial massage and toner. A mask was then applied and left on for about 15 to 20 minutes — the products used all have at least 50 per cent active ingredients, containing high concentrations of botanical, marine and biological extracts, which means you’ll feel a light tingle, while the products work away at your skin. There are no added scents in the products either, which is a plus, because artificial scents tend to be distracting and can induce headaches. While the mask is left to do its job, the therapist indulged me in a quick head and neck massage that lulled me into a light nap. The masque was then followed up with serums, which are massaged thoroughly into the face, neck and decolletage. This is topped with a UV serum and then you’re good to go.
What we liked: The therapist at The CHI was extremely skilled and dealt with my skin with expert hands. The treatment itself worked wonders. Winters tend to play havoc on my skin, so easy to dry and flake. Post treatment, my face visibly brightened, like a bulb was switched on under my skin, especially a couple of days after the facial was done. Typically congested areas like my T-Zone also cleared up and were left feeling light and fresh. Almost like magic, I also saw a smoothening of my fine lines and breakouts reduced over the next couple of weeks.
What we didn’t like: No complaints today.
Go for: If you have commuter’s skin and you’ve noticed spots, lines and a dull complexion, and you’re in need of a fix-it-all, this facial is perfect for you.
The details: Dh710 for the Brightening and Plumping facial; at The CHI Spa, at Shagri-La Dubai, Shaikh Zayed Road.