Asia is the home of the relaxing spa. Book yourself into one of these gorgeous wellness resorts next time you're heading East on holiday
Part of the famed Banyan Tree spa group, this secluded villa retreat opened in November 2012, inspired by the artistic heritage of past Vietnamese dynasties, with one- and two-bedroom villas set on the shores of Canh Duong beach. Signature massages incorporate local ingredients such as turmeric, pandanus and ginseng, based on centuries-old techniques updated for modern tastes.
When the Banyan Tree Spa opened Asia’s first luxury spa resort – Banyan Tree Phuket, Thailand - in 1994, it pioneered the tropical garden spa concept with its Eastern therapies and holistic focus on spiritual, mental and physical harmony. The first of its kind in Asia, it reintroduced an exotic blend of time-honoured beauty and wellness practices that have been passed down from generation to generation.
Meditation, yoga and Asian spa therapies combine to give you a taste of luxury relaxation without rival: the creme de la creme of Far East spa resorts.
Worth a detour too is the Banyan Tree Koh Samui, Thailand, nestled in a series of cascading terraces on scenic Lamai Bay on the island's south-eastern coast. Expect 10 treatment rooms and an extensive range of Asian-inspired body and beauty treatments including The Rainforest range of hydrothermal experiences.
More information: www.banyantree.com
This ultra-luxurious coastal retreat is the ultimate place for a detox, cleanse and relax spa break.
You'll get an individual health and wellness consultation, three nutritious spa cuisine meals a day, a daily foot massage and fitness activities including yoga, Pilates, tai chi, body balance, water aerobics and kick-boxing as well as holistic health lectures, stress management and mind training.
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Thailand's Tao Garden, an integrated medical spa in the foothaill of the Himalayas, fusing Eastern & Western holistic medicine and therapies. It was set up by Master Mantak Chia, one of the world's top 100 spiritual leaders.
If you're looking for a holistic spa break, to re-balance your body, mind and spirit, then an ayurvedic break could be right up your chakra.
Barberyn is one of the pioneers of Ayurveda in Sri Lanka, and has two luxury resorts on the island. Both promise to tackle the stresses of modern life, so perfect for a healing, get-away-from-it-all spa trip.
More information: Barberyn Ayurveda
Why choose an Ayurvedic spa?
In quiet north Goa, on a secluded beach amid tropical forest, the Ashiyana is the region's 'most comprehensive yoga resort'. Perfect if you're looking for a truly mind-clearing break, with masses of choice as to classes and teachers. The day spa offers wonderful complementary treatments with a personalised wellbeing menu.
Look out for the Ashiyana's sister retreat opening in Brazil later in 2013.
More information: Ashiyana Yoga Retreat
The Fivelements, a luxury healing resort, is a former winner (2011) of Destination Spa of the Year in the SpaAsia awards, so expect an experience to remember.
Expensive but worth it - you are guaranteed to come away from this relaxation paradise more grounded, chilled out and at peace with yourself. You'll be eating raw and/or vegetarian food and enjoying traditional Balinese treatments and classes led by the best practitioners.
More information: Fivelements Bali
Top 10 spa mini-breaks
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