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Balance Your Chi
We review the CHI Spa at Shangri-La

A spa outing is always relaxing and reinvigorating but when I headed to Bengaluru’s first CHI, The Spa at the newly open Shangri-La Hotel, I also understood how a spa experience can be holistic as well. This luxurious sanctuary is located on the hotel’s third floor and offers a steam room, sauna, Jacuzzi, lockers, showers and grooming areas. The spa has nine treatment rooms and two special couple’s rooms to administer the nourishing treatments by skilled by therapists that will invigorate the body and soothe the senses.

Decor Talk
The CHI spa is done up in warm tones of brown, beige and cream and the reception has a feature wall with a 3D circular sculpture that looks both like a blooming flower and a flaming sun. The carpet is a multi-dimensional facet of the design, which blends geometry and whimsy. The treatment rooms are edgy, layered spaces with clean lines that induce a sense of relaxation. The decor is interspersed with Asian artefacts, warm woods and specially designed ambient lighting that casts a calming glow on the overall space. The suites and treatment rooms are complete with their own private bath, shower, steam, relaxation lounge and changing and vanity areas.

The Personal Touch
In traditional Chinese philosophy, “chi” or “qi” is the universal life force that governs well-being and personal vitality. It is believed that “chi” must flow freely within the body for people to remain in good health. The holistic treatments are based on ancient techniques that are shared across the many diverse Asian cultures. Each ritual at CHI is designed to create a truly personalised spa experience. A harmony of ancient traditions, therapeutic disciplines and Asian practices will together nurture, rebalance and renew the inner spirit. CHI treats its guests to an ethereal healing experience using the vital forces of Ayurvedic science, inspired by the traditional Indian healing philosophies and designed to restore balance and harmony to the mind and body. CHI incorporates the “five elements” of wood, water, metal, earth and fire. As I settled into my comfortable chair on arrival I was greeted by Spa Director Dr. Jazzy Nepram who then did a brief consultation to determine my specific needs and ensure that I could choose the treatments best suited to me. The idea is to customise the treatment so that you can get a tailor made experience. Sipping on warm refreshing organic tea, I was asked to smell three oils – one in a blue bottle, red bottle and orange bottle. “The oil will choose you,” she said. If you want to feel rejuvenated the oil in the red bottle is used. The oil blue bottle enhances relaxation and induces sleep and the oil in the orange bottle is used for a sense of balance. Incidentally I was drawn to the smell of the oil in the orange bottle.

The Treatment
I choose to have the Aroma Vitality treatment a gentle and soothing massage that combines the elements of Swedish massage techniques, Shiatsu and reflexology. Combining the therapeutic qualities of Oriental aromatic essential oils, this massage is designed to strengthen the body’s vital energy to renew the balance of energies in the body. The entire session lasted 90 minutes. The ritual began with a foot scrub where my masseur Mai used sea salt for cleansing my feet with warm water. After this I was asked to lie on my stomach and the massage started with my back. Mai used a combination of synchronised movements using her palms fingers and hands to smoothen all the stained muscles which took me to a deep state of relaxation. The techniques used are all aimed to balance the seven body chakras and as the massage progresses I could sense that the strokes were indeed deeply relaxing and the movements quite unique. Using the oil I choose she focussed on my back and shoulders (as I had requested) and applied the right pressure to release all the knots and at the end my skin was refreshed and smooth. Post a warm shower, I could sense a holistic sense of wellness that came from this absolutely delightful experience.

Other Treatments
CHI also offers a host of facials, such as the Radiance Facial that stimulates circulation, eliminates toxins and brightens the skin, and massages, including the Swedish Massage or the Indian Head Massage – all of which are specially designed and customised for all guest needs. While you are here you can also check out their other signature treatments CHI Balance a gentle yet penetrating palm-pressure massage focuses on balance, clarity and inner peace. Techniques also include acupressure and co-ordinated movements that originated in tai chi, with an energising massage for the stimulation of the yang and a relaxing massage for calming the yin. Pure synergy element oils are used to harmonise the Chi flow. Likewise, the CHI Hot Stone Massage combines all the benefits of thermotherapy with gliding massage strokes to create a deeply relaxing and healing treatment.Warm stones are used to ease the muscles and restore the body’s energy and vitality. The CHI Rescue Release is a focused massage customised to quickly relieve muscle tension in targeted areas. You can choose or combine the CHI Reflexology and Back massage as part of this. In all time spent at CHI the Spa will leave you full of vitality and vigour. A must visit!

Fact File
Name of the Spa: CHI, the Spa
Established: 2015
Founders: Shangri-La Hotels & Resorts
Architect: Wilson & Associates
Area: 15256 Sq.ft
Treatment rooms: 9 Treatment Suites; 1 Ayurveda Treatment Suite; 5 Single Treatment Suites
Number of estheticians: 8
Signature Treatment: Aroma Vitality, Chi Balance
Timings: 10AM – 10PM
Address: Shangri-la Hotel, Bengaluru, No. 56-6 B, Palace Road, Bengaluru – 560052

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