July 7, 2008

Finding Your Sixth Sense

By Su Aziz

SU AZIZ rejuvenates under blue skies and near the sea.

Something has to be said about women's pain threshold. It is very high! There is a crick between my neck and shoulder that has been bothering me for the past few months. It's a constant dull ache.

The pain refuses to go away no matter how much these muscles have been kneaded, pummelled and coaxed into submission. Honestly, I have given up trying to get rid of it. However, a great warrior will always stand up for one more fight. Or at least one more massage. Don't snigger, I am no warrior, I admit.

Away from the hustle and chaos of a city, tucked on an island known as Bintan in Indonesia, is Angsana Resort Bintan's Angsana Spa. Yes, I am fully aware that it also has a branch on Jalan Sultan Ismail in Kuala Lumpur but nothing beats the setup it has on Bintan.

It has a healing process for all your senses.

Its three glass-walled treatment villas overlook the South China Sea as far as the eyes can see and is only interrupted by splotches of little green islands and the bluest of skies. While you stare into the infinite bluegreens of the sea and skies, your mind clears automatically, leaving space for only what is before you and the incredibly smooth hands of your masseuse. Now, that's your sight and psyche healed.

As you inhale, there is only a scent of salty freshness that humans have yet to simulate. You will remember that smell. For it reminds you of all that is good and clean.

Just then your ears prick to the sounds of crashing waves and the discreet music of traditional Indonesian instruments. Therein, lies the healing process of your hearing and sense of smell, away from the sound and smog of the city.

As the masseuse goes on with her long, continuous, languid strokes of Ibu's Secret massage treatment, you will appreciate the sense of touch.

The strong strokes with her thumbs kneading deep into your flesh, undoing knots and relieving aches, will be addictive. For me, it was a momentary relief of the said crick.

Ibu's Secret is its signature and one of its more popular massages. This deep tissue massage is adapted from traditional Balinese technique to aid blood circulation and relieve tension. It is further enhanced by the warming qualities of tumeric and Eucalyptus oils.

Once your five senses are restored, your sixth sense is then sharpened. Your awareness of your environment and sensitivity to its beauty will evoke an appreciation for all things natural, instinctively seeking all that is good for your well-being.

Sounds too good to be true? Believe me, it is possible and all it takes is that 55-minute high speed catamaran ride from Singapore to Bintan! Sometimes, one has to travel to heal, rejuvenate and be whole again.

The Angsana Spa on Bintan offers a variety of massages for either 90 or 120 minutes. For those travelling in from a long haul flight, I would suggest the Dreams massage treatment which relieves jet lag. Treatment rates start at approximately RM200. The spa accepts either Indonesian Rupiah or American dollars.

Besides massages, there is a range of body scrubs, wraps, baths and facials.

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