I am one of those perennially busy people that rarely has time to book a leisurely afternoon at the spa, and so, on occasion, I have availed myself of Dubai’s many home-centric services. It is an indulgence, to be clear, and one that I took a small measure of joy from because it meant I could get a manicure or pedicure from the comfort of my home, dressed in my PJs. But one day, I tried something different, and after the most awkward experience of my life I swore I’d never book a home service again. With the caveat that I’m aware that this is the firstest of first-world problems, I booked a home massage after a string of cramped flights and strenuous travel. I had never done it before and was looking forward to the experience. I won’t name names but the service sent someone who turned up over an hour late. I opened the door widely, expecting her to be carting a massage table but she had turned up empty-handed. “I’m sorry, I forgot to bring the massage table,” she explained, ducking past the threshold. My mind raced to resolve the strange equation. “What should we do?” I asked, bewildered. “We can do the massage on your bed,” she stated with no hint of humor.
I was a little too dumbstruck to protest, so I led her back to my bedroom. It felt bizarre and way too intimate, but the aching muscles in my back insisted on carrying me forward into one of the weirdest experiences ever. Uncomfortable doesn’t begin to describe it. I won’t go into great detail save to say that at one point I heard my husband chuckling loudly in the other room. When I asked him later why he was laughing he said he had walked by and it was the funniest thing he had ever seen. I looked at my bed later and there were oil smears all over the duvet, making an outline of where my body had been. It was hysterical. All I can do now is laugh about it.
When I heard that Solace had launched a new Holistic Luxury Balinese Home Spa experience, I was hesitant at first. When I learned that Solace was the brainchild of Panchali Mahendra who is one of Dubai’s experts in hospitality and is the Marketing Director of Atelier House Hospitality, my hesitation soon gave way to enthusiasm. Solace promises highly experienced professionals and an ultra-luxurious home spa experience unlike any other. They offer a suite of facials and massages to choose from and Balinese therapists who curate a personalized wellness program suited to your needs. I was game for another go.
I booked a couple’s massage, and much to my delight, our therapists turned up with massive massage beds. The beds were so beautifully made and so solid that I was surprised they had the strength to cart them up to our apartment. My husband and I stood back as they arranged not only the beds, but an aromatherapy station, candles, mood lighting, flowers, a sound bowl, and more. Suddenly, our living room was no longer the place where my husband and I shouted at NBA games together on the couch; it had transformed into a gorgeous spa oasis.
I selected a lavender-scented oil from Apothecarybymamta – which is one of the hand-picked local brands Solace uses in their services – for my treatment. It felt surreal to get a massage from the comfort of my home, and not just any massage, but a terrific one that was guided by expert hands that found and unwound every knot in my back and shoulders. As someone who adores massages, I realized quickly that I was in good hands, and something about being safe at home served to deepen my relaxation. I was lulled into one of the most tranquil states I had ever been in When it was all over, I was in a dazed stupor. They made us some delicious HaiyaTea to sip on as we sat on our couch like two smug and pampered cats.
With a bevy of home spa services to choose from, I was instantly of the mind to book Solace again. My fears had been erased and replaced by the assurance that Solace knows exactly what it’s doing and delivers on its promise to bring the benefits of a world-class facility into your home. If you want to give it a try – and I recommend you do – Solace is open daily for bookings between 10:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. via @solacespa.ae or by calling (+971) 050 684 3121. You can also book via their Instagram page @solacehomesp. Prices start from 325 AED per person. Massage beds included.