Being a mama means keeping a ridiculous number of plates spinning at any one time, and often to keep everything else afloat we neglect looking after ourselves. But without taking some time to relax, unwind and either detox, de-stress or purely pamper yourself, you’ll end up a frazzled wreck no good to anyone. So, to inspire you to schedule some solitary time, we’ve rounded up Asia’s best spa retreats ideal for weekend getaways (or longer!), because every mama deserves a little Me-time.
The Comprehensive Detox
Eating on the go and relaxing with the help of a glass of wine after the kids have gone to bed; sound familiar? Sometimes our bodies are crying out for a detox with niggling symptoms like tension headaches, skin breakouts and poor sleep patterns. At times like these it’s definitely time to reboot the system.
Kamalaya Wellness Retreat, Koh Samui, Thailand
Nestled alongside a secluded bay in Koh Samui is the unbelievably serene Kamalaya. With winding paths, lotus ponds and flowing streams, the whole place oozes a sense of calm and relaxation. Various programmes are on offer including sleep enhancement, weight loss, and a 3-day Introduction to Detox, but their ultimate retreat is the Comprehensive Detox. Seven days of eating wholesome, healthy cuisine, endless massages and treatments and not a thing to be done except pamper yourself. Recommended for when you have reached total burnout. See our full review of their programme here.
Chiva Som, Hua Hin, Thailand
With a loyal A-list following, Chiva Som is the perfect blend of holistic wellness, beautiful surroundings and a hefty dose of pampering. The impeccably designed resort houses luxurious bedrooms and facilities that on their own will have you un-hunching your shoulders and unwinding in no time. But throw in their range of wellness breaks, encompassing yoga, detox and relaxation and you will come away transformed. Impossibly easy to get to and incredibly hard to drag yourself away from. See our full review here.
The Farm at San Benito, Philippines
The Farm is an award-winning medical and wellness retreat set in the midst of a coffee and coconut plantation just two hours south of Manila. The programmes are all individually tailored but can include medically guided detoxes, emotional retreats and all-round healing. Special seasonal programmes are offered alongside blissful escapist surroundings and delicious vegan food. The perfect quick escape for a spot of restorative pampering.
If maintaining your health isn’t the issue and you’re simply in need of an escape where solitude is positively encouraged and relaxation practically enforced, then these options are for you.
Como Shambhala Estate, Ubud, Bali
You couldn’t get much more detached from the “real” world than at Como Shambhala’s rainforest perch. Renowned as one of the world’s most luxurious wellness retreats, the philosophy here is all about reviving and soothing through a simple but well-perfected back-to-nature approach. In-villa massage rooms give you a feel for the pace of the place, but for those looking for some distractions, daily classes – ranging from yoga to rock climbing – are on offer. The 5-star standards, magical location and delicious health-focused food will have you back in fighting form in no time. And kids are welcome when guests stay in one of the resort’s gorgeous villas, with babysitting services conveniently on offer. See our full review here.
Fusion Maia Resort, Hoi An, Vietnam
A short flight to Da Nang and suddenly you’re sitting astride a stretch of pristine white sand beach; Fusion Maia is the perfect luxury escape. Aside from gorgeous, indulgent rooms with private pools, daily fitness activities and delicious food, the biggest selling point has to be the unlimited daily spa treatments that are included in your room rate. So, that means zero guilt when it comes to squeezing in an extra manicure, or perhaps a much needed facial with one of their expert therapists. Be a planner and get your bookings in early to make sure full schedules don’t dash your spa dreams. See our full review here.
Capella Hotel, Sentosa, Singapore
The joy of Sentosa Island is that it’s just that, an island. You can treat Capella Singapore your own private getaway. Capella’s 30 acres of beautiful lawns are dotted with a mixture of charming colonial and more striking modern buildings. With roaming peacocks and its own beach, you’ll escape to another world (definitely one with no to-do lists, screaming kids or dinners needing to be cooked!). The pièce de resistance for any frazzled Mama is the Auriga Spa. For the ultimate in relaxation book in for their Pamper Me Auriga package, which includes a 2-night stay, personal spa consultation, daily breakfast and a blissful 2-hour treatment.
Espa, Sentosa, Singapore
The favorite day spa in Singaprore: Espa, which is also located on Sentosa. With 10,000 square feet of grounds to explore, vitality and plunge pools, steam rooms and rock saunas, it is the perfect place to spend a day centering yourself. Schedule an incredible massage with one of their wonderful therapists and then simply spend the rest of your day lounging around the facilities. You will feel completely at peace in the tranquil jungle set up.
Further Afield and Full of Adventure
If you have a little more time to play with and have something of an adventurous or yogic nature, then it may be worth flying a little further from home for your spa retreat.
Shreya’s Retreat, Bangalore, India
Head back to where Yoga began and the peaceful setting of Shreya’s for full immersion into this luxury vegetarian resort that quite literally practices what it preaches. Days are tranquilly spent ambling between yoga and meditation classes, in between pampering spa treatments. This wellness retreat is all about spiritual healing and will transport you to a whole different world free from everyday worries. There are just 12 accommodations spread across the lush property, and junior yogis are welcome, particularly in the 3-Bedroom Cottage. See our full review here.
MesaStila, Yogyakarta, Indonesia
This holistic retreat is perched atop volcanic coffee plantations and promises a mountainous retreat from life’s daily woes. Wake each day at MesaStila with views of mesmerising scenery, while away your time at the spa, or just read on the various canopy-covered daybeds before feasting on delicious Javanese and Mediterranean food. And for a true touch of local healing, meet with the village’s Jamu lady as she comes by the villas every afternoon offering free local herbal medicinal concoctions made from the likes of eucalyptus and tamarind.
Close to Home
Unfortunately, dream as we might, sometimes we just can’t find a way to get away alone for longer than a night or two. Fear not, that’s no reason not to schedule some spa time, all less than a stone’s throw away.
Banyan Tree, Macau
Just an hour’s ferry ride from Hong Kong (but don’t forget your passport!) is the blissful Banyan Tree in Macau. Macau itself doesn’t conjure up images of relaxation but check into the Banyan Tree and you will feel like you’re on your own tropical island. Each room has its own private lap pool and a Thai sense of therapeutic calm. But the main selling point is the spa. With spa pavilions located amongst peaceful bamboo courtyards with expert therapists, it’s the perfect one night stop to switch off and unwind before returning to the daily grind.
Day Spas, Hong Kong
OK, let’s be realistic, being able to coordinate time away from the kids when you’re at your most in need of it isn’t always possible. There’s going to be times when a day is all you can free up and times when at the last minute, you’re thankful for even a few hours pampering time. At these times we suggest you reach out to that old Hong Kong faithful, the hotel spa. With incredible massages, excellent facilities and dining options on site, these are great places to spend a day focusing solely on yourself, even if you are only a taxi ride away from life’s imposing demands. Our favourite spas that offer up wonderful packages and that have fantastic facilities for you to enjoy after your treatment are as follows:
The Four Seasons
We have tried and tested a lot of the Four Season’s treatments and have never been disappointed. While booking in for a package won’t get you access to their coveted harbour front pool, it will give you access to their sprawling relaxation area. Curl up with a magazine and ginger tea in the relaxation room, soak in the giant Jacuzzi or unwind in the sauna and steam. Then after all that pampering, enjoy a healthy lunch pool side at their outdoor café which serves up great food in an unbeatable setting. See one of our reviews here.
If you equate spa time with pool time then I-Spa at the Intercontinental is definitely the option for you. They have a range of full day spa packages that include 3 hours of treatments, a healthy lunch and give you access to their pool and gym for the whole day. Whilst you could spend your time lapping the main pool, we recommend camping down by the iconic infinity pools that have a prime harbour side spot looking back over HK island. Escapism at its best.