Outer Body Experiences

Traditionally, when fashion month is over, and spring is making its first attempts at breaking, I get a full body and face treatment: a deep tissue massage to relax, a facial to clean my pores, a sea salt body scrub to remove all the dead winter skin and prepare for the pending vitamin D rush of summer, and anything else those nifty spa people can think of to restore the pink color of my ghostly looking skin. I’ve tried a few different places in the city, some better than others, but Shibui Spa at the Greenwich Hotel in Tribeca was by far the best experience. Carine Roitfeld swears by it, and I’ve witnessed a slew of other celebrity customers sneak in. The subterranean spa is designed like a Japanese Onsen – if you’ve been to Tokyo and visited Hakone, you know what I mean. “To enter Shibui is to be embraced by wood, water, and stone—much of it with a storied past,” the website says. It’s quiet, warm and dark; the perfect setting for a sleep/sun/vitamin-deprived human being.

“Our treatments are rooted in the same simplicity and reverence for nature,” they go on. “The products we use are plant-based and, whenever possible, organic. Our practitioners, who are experts in ancient as well as contemporary healing techniques, approach their craft as art—with devotion, dedication, and compassion.” My treatment was three-fold: first I soaked in an elemental detox bath. Then I was scrubbed with a dry sisal brush for about ten minutes. After which I was massaged with oil for an hour and we finished with the facial. And let me tell you, these Japanese ladies have magic hands. I had a few outer-body experiences when I was down on that bed. I felt refreshed and blissfully happy, as one should be after being pampered for three hours! I didn’t get a chance to hang out by the pool but I suppose there is always next fashion week…

Robe from the spa; Vintage denim two-piece suit at Avalon Vintage in Los Angeles; Burnt orange turtleneck by Sportmax; Hair calf ‘Eloise’ booties (sold out) by Ralph Lauren; Down puffer jacket by Peter Pilotto; Toasted Almond bag by Brahmin.

Photos by Felix Wong.

April 1, 2014

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4 Responses to “Outer Body Experiences”

  1. avatar
    Dani K. - Reply

    What an esthetically beautiful story. Just looking through the photos made me feel thike I was having a vicarious spa thrill. Do they sell those lovely kimonos at the spa? I want one! This was a great tip – for those of us who are fortunate to get to NYC periodically – a spa like that is rare! I’m going for sure. Thanks for the great tip!

  2. avatar
    absolutelymrsk - Reply

    By far the best hotel in nyc and maybe in the world! the service, the interior design, the overall vibe, the location, … . visited a few years ago and was in awe with the overall experience! good not get enough of the drawing room and their cappuccinos! didn’t go to the spa, but i certainly took a swim! and i must say, you have missed something, i almost fell asleep in the pool! okay, you made me want to come back

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