Jayne Nankivell waves work stress goodbye with a Khurula Body Ritual at the Amani Spa Radisson Blu Waterfront, Cape Town
As I enter through the glass doors of the Radisson Blu Hotel Waterfront, Cape Town, I am struck by the view of the rippling Atlantic Ocean stretching all the way to Robben Island and beyond. It’s not my first visit to the hotel – I have sipped many a post-work pina colada out on the wooden deck of Tobago’s Bar & Terrace, while watching the yachts float by and the seagulls frolic in the rim-flow pool – but the beauty of this charming nautical scene never ceases to amaze me.
Today’s visit involves a different kind of relaxation, namely a Khurula Body Ritual at the hotel’s luxurious Amani Spa. Upon arrival, I receive a glass of chilled water to drink and am escorted to the changing facility by my bubbly therapist, Tracy. The spa interior reflects its seaside location, all sandstone, mosaic mirrors, white wood and subtle hues of blue and green coming together to create a calming mood.
Dressed in a fluffy bathrobe and comfy slippers, I follow Tracy to the Bliss room. My treatment promises to bring khurula, or inner peace, and includes a full-body massage, as well as a mini facial.
As a ‘welcome touch’, a warm facecloth is placed on the soles of my feet while light pressure is applied to my limbs and back. I feel myself unwinding as Tracy begins the massage using a balm made of shea butter and organic coconut oil with a rich, natural scent, intended to leave my skin feeling nourished and hydrated.
Her technique is a fluid combination of figures of eight, kneading, knuckling, and long smooth strokes, starting at my calves and moving upwards along my back, neck and arms, releasing tension in the muscles and also increasing circulation. She tackles the knots in my back firmly, using her forearms, but the pressure is pleasant and just right for me to slip into a dreamlike state, all the stresses of the office now a distant memory. I turn over and the routine is repeated along the front of my body.
Once the massage is complete, Tracy gently rouses me from my tranquil state to explain the condition of my skin before beginning the facial. I’m not surprised to hear that it’s dehydrated and a little bit sensitive, considering I spend at least eight hours a day in an air-conditioned office (not to mention my caffeine addiction).
The Amani Spa group offers exclusive German cosmetics brand Babor, known for its clinical precision and its active, yet surprisingly natural ingredients, ideal for skin such as mine that tends to react badly to chemicals. The facial starts with a deep cleanse using an oil-based emulsion that quickly removes make-up and daily grime without that tight feeling I sometimes get from gel cleansers.
Next up is my favourite step, exfoliation. An enzyme powder enriched with papaya and pomegranate is painted on to my face, neck and décolletage with a fan-shaped brush, then gently rubbed in and rinsed off to reveal unbelievably soft skin with no burning or redness.
To combat my skin’s dehydration issue, Tracy suggests a multivitamin ampoule, which she expertly pats on with fingertips to increase its absorption.
The facial ends with the application of a creamy, lightly scented moisturiser that is quickly absorbed by my skin, leaving no traces of greasiness. When Tracy finally hands me a mirror, I’m delighted to see that my skin looks as good as it feels – plumped and glowing.
As I exit the spa, the spectacular ocean view beckons once more and I head for a cocktail at the bar. What better way to end off such an indulgent experience?
Photography: Courtesy images