It’s no secret that the beautiful gemstone, Jade, has become a must have item in any woman’s jewellery collection. Associated with the classic oriental look, Chinese women have worn Jade for centuries – superstitious in its ability to heal and bring great fortunes of luck. So when I heard that renowned beauty brand, ESPA, had created a radiance facial treatment using Jade, I jumped at the chance to try it. My thinking? If this stone can transform a woman’s appearance just by wearing it, what could it do for my skin… and after a 90 minute, luxurious treatment, I can honestly say I was glowing.
The spa at the Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong boasts a hi-rise swimming pool, steam room, sauna and fitness centre. The changing rooms are beautifully equipped – and my own locker, robe and pair of slippers greeted me. I headed straight for the relaxation room, where the view was nothing short of breathtaking. Situated on the 116th floor of Hong Kong’s famous ICC building, I felt as though I was in Google Earth. Overlooking the whole of Hong Kong Island, I had the perfect view of Victoria Harbour stretching all the way from Causeway Bay to Kennedy Town.
My trance was broken when my beauty therapist came to collect me for my treatment. Bubbly, but soothing, she was everything I look for in a professional. Walking through the mahogany maze of corridors, I was surprised at how big the Ritz Spa actually was. Comprising of 11 treatment rooms, the spa covers the entire south side of the 116th floor.
Lying on the massage bed, which was cleverly fitted to my posture, I was at complete ease. Before the facial began my therapist really listened to my skin concerns and closely examined my complexion – taking the time to go through the products I’m currently using and explaining why they may not be benefitting my skin. Having told her I suffer regular breakouts, she detoured, wanting to fully analyse my skin using an analysis machine. I was given a mirror to hold and whilst the lights were switched off, my face turned into a rainbow of colours. “The pink dots reveal where your skin is gathering oil and the purple beneath your eyes, shows just how tired you are”. I failed to mention my newfound love of sipping champagne over looking Victoria Harbour in some of Hong Kong’s beautiful bars…
One of the most interesting parts of the facial was the extraction of blackheads across my nose, which left my skin blemish free and much more radiant than anticipated. Taking a short metal pointed rod, my therapist inserted it into every pore on my nose to relieve any build up of grease. Painful? Yes, (you should know that I do have a ridiculously low pain tolerance), but it was more than worth it. To further open my pores, I benefitted from a facial steam whilst my skin was thoroughly cleansed with a cream cleanser for greater product absorption. My therapist proceeded with a gentle massage using ESPA products to not only stimulate blood circulation, but to carefully work the ingredients into the skin. Containing the key components of avocado oil, evening primrose oil, carrot and sesame seed oil – it was like a smoothie for my skin.
Then came the jade rollers. Having been warm and completely relaxed, the icy temperate of the rollers were a shock to the system. Designed to close pores whilst rejuvenating the eye contours and dull complexions, the rollers were moved across my face following a carefully planned route. For ten minutes, they never once left my skin.
After 90 minutes, my treatment was complete. The difference? My skin had a 100% increase in luminosity, but more importantly, it felt clean and soft and thoroughly hydrated. Unlike so many facials, which are more concerned with the act of putting ingredients into your skin, this facial takes the time to first extract the skin’s toxins, making way for the product’s beneficial ingredients.
The spa at The Ritz Hong Kong is a must visit for any of you planning to visit Hong Kong. At HK$1,900 (approximately £157.00) for the Jade Radiance Facial, yes, it’s on the more expensive side – but totally worth the investment. The attention and care from the therapists, combined with the plush surroundings and views of Hong Kong Island make you feel like you’ve had your money’s worth as soon as you’ve entered. It certainly makes my top 10 spa list.
words by Samantha Organ