Head over heals
Taking time out is a must during any holiday, and there are plenty of places to leave you feeling well and truly pampered in Temple Town.
If exploring all the wonders of Angkor has left you feeling in desperate need of some rest and relaxation, then try one of Siem Reap’s plethora of spas for a dose of unwind time. For centuries, massage has been used as a form of relaxation with archaeological evidence stretching back to many ancient civilisations, including in China, India, Japan, Egypt, Rome and Greece.
You’ll find a host of treatment and massage options, from Swedish, Thai, Balinese, Japanese and Chinese to Hawaiian and traditional Khmer. Ranging from cheap massages to spas where you can splurge, you’re sure to find somewhere to make you feel on top of the world and ready to hit the temple trail all over again.
To soothe the soul, head to the sumptuous Bodia Spa (Heritage Suites) and watch the sunset from the newly-created tropical garden roof terrace while enjoying a foot massage. Alternatively, indulge in one of the spa’s many treatments, which include the Bodia Classic Oil Massage (60 minutes for $32) and the couple’s package, ‘In The Mood For Love’ ($125 per person). Beautifully designed natural décor complements the 100% natural treatments, which are made in-house. The tranquil spa boasts 16 single rooms and five doubles.
Frangipani (615, Hup Guan Street) has dedicated itself to the art of healing by taking inspiration from its surroundings and incorporating some of the ancient secrets of Asian beauty. Offering a tranquil environment with running water and tropical plants inside, the spa offers a variety of massage treatments, body wraps, scrubs, facials and waxing. Firm favourites on the menu include the Tropical Massage (60 minutes for $25) and the Tropical Facial (60 minutes for $42). All treatments, except waxing and those under 30 minutes, include a complimentary foot bath.
Islands Massage (Old Market area) has become a cheap and cheerful favourite with tourists and expats alike. Combining traditional massage techniques with alternative remedies, the air-conditioned salon offers a reasonably priced range of relaxing therapies, including the body, foot and four-hands massage. Islands Massage is open daily from 10am to late.
In Khmer, sokkhak means tranquility, and the Siem Reap spa of the same name offers just that. Combining nature-inspired decor with a soft and warm atmosphere, Sokkhak Spa (Soksan St) has hand-picked products containing botanical and marine homemade ingredients. Massages on offer include the Khmer herbal compress (60 minutes for $28) to purify, relax and relieve aches and pains, and the four-hands massage (60 minutes for $44), a unique treatment from two therapists.
Kaya Spa (Pi Thnou St) is located in a beautifully renovated colonial house in front of the Old Market. They provide you high quality traditional massages and special treatments such as aromatherapy, candle, stone or khmer massages, facial treatments, body scrubs, manicure, pedicure and more. If you like the products they use, you can also visit their boutique and discover a full range of 100% natural wellness products for the skin, body, hair and home.
Drift away with Samadhi Yoga by Navutu Dreams Resort (Navutu Road), which holds a variety of daily yoga classes to help put you in a serene state of meditative consciousness, surrounded by lush rice fields and sugar palm plantations. They also have an elite staff of masseuses and wellness experts on hand, with the focus on whole body health and healing – their signature treatments are aimed at making you your best self again.
For those on a tight budget, Temple Massage (Pub St) offers 60 minute foot massage for only $1.50! You’ll also find body oil massage amongst other options here, in ambient surroundings with superfast Wi-Fi, so you can surf while you soothe.