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Zen in the city
Bodhi Spa, hosted by the prestigious GRT Grand Chennai, is all about finding peace and reviving the mind, body and soul

Well-recognized for its services offered in jewellery and hospitality, GR Thanga Maligai (GRT) Hotels and Resorts thought it was time to take on another milestone and stick a different feather in its cap. Keeping in-sync with their acclaimed tradition of hospitality, the esteemed hotel group took a step further to cater to the wants and needs of their business and leisure guests and hence, Bodhi Spa – a complete wellness concept was instilled into its service model.

Bodhi Spa at the GRT Grand, Chennai currently hosts the largest place among the hotel group’s nine leisure spaces. Spanning across approximately 5000 sq. feet, the spa, just like the hotel’s very famous Azulia (an award winning Mediterranean restaurant), is its guests’ most favoured spot to unwind and rejuvenate at.

Spa Mantra routed down south of the country to find what the city of Chennai was missing out on until now!

The Zen Approach

Conceptualized and developed by the GRT Hotels and Resorts, Bodhi Spa, a new wellness project came into being in December 2012. This spa brand currently operates in Radisson Blu GRT Chennai, GRT Grand Sunway Pondicherry and recently, the GRT Grand Chennai.

Bodhi is a Sanskrit word which means awakening, enlighten or self realization of one’s self. And hence this is considered the primary goal of the spa and its offerings. The spa therapies are designed as for an urban spa that can help de-stress the body, rehabilitate the mind, and aid in soul relief.

A lot of effort and time was dedicated to bring out an excellent and well-choreographed brand such as Bodhi; right from the conception of the logo that has a creative of tree leaves to choosing a colour like moss green to denoting freshness and newness as well as the hotel’s commitment to be eco-sensitive. The five leaves connote the five senses one aims to engage every time you experience the spa and its treatments. At GRT Bodhi Spas, therapies are created to tap the physical, mental and spiritual balance through the spas’ rituals and experiences.

Designing spaces for peace/ Designing Peace by Piece

The architecture and interior designing was conceptualized and developed by Shilpa Architects while the project was handled by the Chief Architect, Sheila Sriprakash and assisted by Pavitra xxx to bring alive the philosophy of the GRT Bodhi Spa in its décor. This commendable task was to put together the five senses with a Zen stance that spells the need for total awareness. GRT Bodhi Spa takes their commitment to nature to a whole new level. The spa oozes eco-sensitivity with its eco-friendly or natural products like granite stone or marble are used in its décor.

Ambience: The moment one walks into the spa, its irresistible fragrance captures the heart and soul. This is fragrance is a specially-formulated natural essential oil, which is poured in diffusers to spread a therapeutic aroma and the mood in the spa. Water bodies as design elements within the spa and fitness area are deliberately used to denote the fluidity of life and the ever-changing states of mind. It also creates engagement to the sound sense to create the peaceful ambience. The spa has visually implemented water bodies like a salt sea water aquarium, an indoor pool with a jacuzzi etc.


Lighting:  Low power warm LED lights, which do not produce heat, are used in the spa thus saving on the HVAC. Natural light is encouraged as far as possible in the GRT Bodhi spa design.


Finishing: The flooring and cladding were made with natural materials like wood, marble, granite etc. while the paints are lead-free and eco friendly.


Art work: The hotel promotes local artisans and artists to help the community hence traces of these can also be seen in at Bodhi. Natural dyes and chemical free water colours in the paintings are used to make the surrounding to feel like a green spa.


Fabrics:  The bed covers, towels, therapists’ uniform, guests’ bathrooms, slippers and upholstery are tailored with natural, organic fabrics.


Furniture: Most of the supplies and products are indigenous and some ergonomic furniture and fixtures were imported from Italy and other countries. Most of the spa design elements are inspired by local flavors, especially the art and the artifacts.


Music: A soothing spa CD was compiled for the spa from xxx that can be played and heard during the therapy.


Before & After Replenishing Spaces: The relaxation area for pre-treatment and the Super Food counter are the spa’s most innovative spaces. The relaxation area overlooks the salt sea fish tank and the super food counter is open to guests for a light spa cuisine and juices once the treatment is done.


Heavenly Offering

Since the hotel caters to mainly business transit guests, the menu is based on an urban day spa design and relates to the common needs of stressed business professionals mostly and vacationers to a smaller extent. Bodhi offers treatments only in the spa in the privacy of the fully-equipped therapy chamber, including wet areas with herbal steam baths and rain showers.

Some of the regional location has an influence on the spa menu for example one of the therapies is Madras Malli, which uses the Jasmine flower as the inspiration for the therapy with Jasmine bud extract essential oils, Jasmine flower scrub followed by a milk bath scented with fresh jasmine flowers. Also, Ayurveda forms a base for some therapies which has resulted in adding mud baths and hydrotherapy facilities in the design.

The spa goes hi-tech with today’s latest gadgets. For example, the consultation, feedback and health form is filled up on a tablet, which can be traced on the hotel or spa intranet. This ensures that the customer’s information is never lost/misplaced and makes it hassle free for the customer’s next visit. Like any other spa in the city, the spa also accommodates an iPod in each room.


Guidance & Procedures

Seven therapists are multi-skilled and trained on the GRT Bodhi Spa menu. The salon has coiffeur specialists for female and male styling. The therapists undergo a rigorous training in the GRT Bodhi spa school set up in the Radisson Blu GRT Chennai. This training is conducted over two months. The training is imparted in the class room on a ‘one-on-one’ basis by spa trainers. The spa also brings in an English teacher to work on soft skills simultaneously etching them the standard ‘talk lines’.

Counseling sessions are held by consultant professionals to train the mind and the attitude. Intensive training and trials are done on the Bodhi spa therapy menus and the products used. The spa therapist is finally certified after an exam, which consists of practical therapy practice and knowledge of the products and other fundamentals.

The Verdict: A quick stay with a variety of leisure options within a business traveler’s reach is something every city hotel is striving to achieve. GRT Grand Chennai has accomplished this by its 3600 approach by adding the city’s finest wellness and fitness center along with their existing hospitality services that befits its discerning clientele. Spa Mantra was overwhelmed by Bodhi Spa’s wonderful menu that had the most calming packages and services. We wish the new spa brand and hotel all very best in the future!


Spa Mantra’s rendezvous with the man who knows all about the luxurious Hotel GRT Grand Chennai, U Sasikumar, General Manager of the hotel…


What is/are GRT Grand’s culture/s like?

The service culture, goals, principles and beliefs are the foundation of the work we do to ensure a guest is highly satisfied. This is supported by a deeply-instilled ethic of personalized service, hospitality and warmth of our human assets who non-verbally convey “We Care”. This allows the hotel to satisfy the needs and tastes of customers and to maintain our position as the first choice for our customers with our service philosophy of “promise of more”.


From the architectural point of view, what does the hotel reflect?

GRT Grand is unique in many ways. The lobby reflects the grandeur of the atrium with natural light coming in symbolizing the warmth and hospitality. The architecture also reflects the friendly and professional service provided by the hotel.


What are some of the hotel’s major highlights?

The services offered by Hotel GRT Grand are designed to meet the hospitality need of every business and leisure traveler. Plush accommodation, multi-cuisine restaurants, an all-embracing banquet and conference facilities, the hotel caters to every need of the guest.


‘AZULIA’, a signature restaurant of Hotel GRT Grand provides authentic Mediterranean cuisine

from 10 different countries. ‘Box Office Collection’ at GRT Grand offers a collection of all time favorite movies for the guest to choose from and watch at leisure in the room.

Why did the hotel insist in creating a leisure/ wellness center like Bodhi?

With high-stress lifestyles taking its toll, people are looking for ways to unwind and relax, and what could be more relaxing and refreshing than a day at a spa! The spa is an entity devoted to enhancing overall well-being through a variety of professional services that encourage the renewal of mind, body and spirit.

What makes Bodhi spa different from the others?

Bodhi, is the first spa to have an indoor swimming pool with state of the art fitness equipments and exclusive customized therapies to suit the preferences of guests.


Does GRT have spas in any of your hotels & resorts? Do they run under the same brand umbrella (GRT) or is Bodhi your official spa brand?

Yes, Bodhi is the official spa brand of GRT Hotels. It is operational in Radisson Blu GRT Chennai, GRT Grand Sunway Pondicherry and is now newly opened in GRT Grand Chennai, soon to be opened in GRT Temple Bay in Mamallapuram.

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