From nibbling fish to sake baths—the ways we treat ourselves have become stranger over the years. As more and more experiments are done, people have been discovering new and strange ways to make us become healthier, more beautiful human beings.

Spas are not exempt from these strange new discoveries. Today, more and more small-time shops, including that parlor just around the block, are offering spa treatments to just about anyone who comes in. Therefore, spas need to differentiate themselves from these by creating more innovative ways of offering treatments. Gone are those simple facials and massages. Now, you may have to choose from dozens and dozens of different kinds of treatments. Targeting specific parts or certain problems, treatments are now more tailored to an individual’s specific needs. Yet what is interesting is that many of these bizarre treatments actually have their roots from traditional ways and cultures. Many people wonder whether these treatments really have health benefits or not. Still, they will be fascinating to anyone.

Gondola Massage in Venice

Many people dream of riding those beautiful gondolas in Venice. After all, it is said to be the ultimate way to experience the beautiful city. But what if you could also get a massage while riding one? In modified gondolas, you will be treated to a 40-minute massage, as you pass through the Venetian Lagoon. You have your own gondolier who stirs the gondola, and if you’re worried about privacy, the massage focuses on your face, feet, and upper body, ensuring that the lower part of your body is covered at all times. And to protect your skin from the harmful rays of the sun, a special type of oil that has SPF protection is used. You can enjoy this at the Hotel Cipriani’s The Cassanova Beauty and Wellness Center.

Alpha Oxy-LED Light Spa Capsule in England

At Tunbridge Wells in England is the Med-Spa Clinic, offering a full body capsule strangely reminiscent of that tanning bed in the “Starship Enterprise.” Your body is blasted with LEDs or light-emitting diodes which give off deep heat. This will make you perspire a lot. Together with the mattress that vibrates—used to exercise your muscles, as well as super-oxygenated air—to speed your metabolism, it should help you lose weight. If you’re claustrophobic, you might want to think this one over.

Reiki on Horseback in Wyoming

Reiki is a Japanese practice which stems from the belief that healing energy that is passed from a practitioner to the client will promote a balanced spirit and body. The Japanese practitioner is a person, but Christina DiBartolo, owner of Rockin’ Heart Ranch, herself a certified Reiki Master, believes that it does not always have to be that way. For her, horses also carry an innate healing energy. In her ranch at Jackson, near Wyoming, you can experience this by riding a horse all by yourself or with the owner, guided by her to let you tap into that energy. The result is said to be a cure from emotional anxieties to physical aches.

Japanese Sake Bath

For sake lovers, this is the ultimate spa experience. Who would have thought that being bathed in your favorite liquor would be possible? At a spa resort called Yunessun Hot Springs Amusement Park and Spa Resort in Hakone Kowakien, this sake bath is the most famous among the many “amusement baths” available, like ones in green tea, coffee, and wine. In this communal bath, there is a huge cask where sake flows from. One of the health benefits is the amino acids found in sake, which are also said to be powerful moisturizers, having been used by geishas before they put on their makeup.

Arctic Ice Room in Las Vegas

Sick of saunas? If you don’t like feeling baked inside an oven, this one’s for you. There is a communal glass-and-tile room where you can sit on a heated bench, and inhale mint-infused cool air that is chilled to 55 degrees Fahrenheit. Up to eight people can go in at once, and together you can share your delight at the snowflakes that drift slowly down from the ceiling (crystals, really, made from soap and water). Many people believe that extreme cold, especially after going into sauna, can reduce hypertension and tighten pores, so you might want to pass by the sauna room first, to increase the health benefits. In Las Vegas’ Caesars Palace is Qua Baths and Spa, which offers this snowy treatment.

Chocolate Facial Therapy

Fans of this sweet delight will surely go crazy over this treatment—just make sure not to eat what’s being lathered onto your face! It’s a 40-minute treatment, slathering your face with creamy, melted Swiss chocolate that’s oxygen-infused, to help the sweet treat’s natural vitamins and antioxidants go deep into your skin. This will help fight aging, promote healing and rejuvenate cells. The Aquapura Douro Valley Resort and Spa in Portugal’s northeast offers this one-of-a-kind sweet treatment.

Harmony Balls Massage in Mexico

Casa Dorada Los Cabos Resort in Mexico’s Baja Peninsula is home to Saltwater Spa, which offers a massage that was taken from Chinese tradition. For fifty minutes, the massage makes use of silver “baoding” balls which are rolled all over your body. This is supposed to stimulate your body with its rolling pressure. Plus, the balls’ 48 different tonal vibrations will help soothe your mind.

Manaka Tapping Treatment in Texas

If you’re one who wouldn’t dare try acupuncture despite its healing effects, you might find this a suitable alternative. It’s quite similar to acupuncture, but without those needles. It’s a 50-minute treatment which uses a manaka—a wooden hammer that originated in Japan as far back as sixteenth century, which taps wooden pegs on certain points in your body. The gentle taps are done to the beat of a metronome, giving you the same health benefits of acupuncture—relief from body pains, stress, and will give your body an over-all balanced energy. You can avail of this at The LakeHouse Spa at Lake Austin Spa Resort in Austin, Texas.



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