Vietnam gets high-end spa

La Residence has opened its new spa - the first high-end spa in the former imperial capital of Hue - at the end of April, with a suite of facial and body relaxation treatments. By early fall, the spa will be fully functional, featuring hot stone massage, water treatments and myriad other wellness products. In Vietnam, the only other Comfort Zone Spa now in operation resides at the Park Hyatt in Ho Chi Minh City.

“The debut of a Comfort Zone spa at La Residence crystallizes the entire experience we’ve been striving for in Hue,” said Eric Merlin, managing director of Ho Chi Minh City-based Apple Tree Group and part-owner of La Residence. “Now we have the spa, a fine-dining French/Mediterranean restaurant, a fitness center - all operational and as marvelous as we’d hoped they’d be.”

La Residence Hotel, considered the finest hotel in all of Vietnam, was built in 1930 as part of the colonial governor’s residence in the former French colony of Annam. Its former guests include Bao Dai, the last emperor of Vietnam.

The hotel’s bowed façade, its long horizontal lines and nautical flourishes are hallmarks of the Streamline Moderne School of art deco architecture. Inside, the hotel’s 122 rooms and suites, restaurants, lounges, bars and conference rooms are detailed in complementary art-deco furnishings and décor that evoke both the 1920s and 1950s.

The spa at La Residence was inspired by the same art deco aesthetic, including original stained glass designs, and is enhanced by complementary music, oils, candles, incense and tea. The spa indulges 380 square meters, with seven treatment rooms - two for women, two for men, and three for couples. Beyond the treatment rooms, the spa features Jacuzzis, saunas and proximity to the most elegant outdoor pool in Vietnam.

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The spa’s manager oversees a team of seven therapists and three attendants, all of whom went through a thorough and rigorous training regimen by Comfort Zone’s expert handlers from Italy.

“The style is Italian, but the traditions are Oriental, Indian and Arabian,” said Nicolas Josi, the hotel’s Swiss general manager. “These therapists, they touch well. They move well. They are not pulling, not stretching. It’s pressure, light pressure - a sensational blend of traditions.”
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