As an avid music fan, I was intrigued by the Muusa treatment, which promises a customised soundtrack in time with the therapist's strokes. The therapy was pioneered in Italy and is limited to a few spas; Hong Kong day spa Sense of Touch debuts this treatment in Asia.
The Muusa creators point out that soundtracks can never be replicated, even if you have another Muusa massage with the same therapist, as every massage is different. Once the treatment is over, you take home the music created during the session on a CD - the idea being to relive the tranquil spa vibe back at home.
Arriving at Sense of Touch's spa in Repulse Bay, I'm given four options. There is the 90-minute 'Awaken Your Senses' with a coffee scrub blended with peppermint, followed by a sandalwood and lemon grass-scented massage paired with celestial choirs. The three 60-minute treatments are 'Infinite Harmony', which uses warm basalt stones, geranium and lavender, and natural rhythms to reduce stress; a camomile and sandalwood massage, 'Everything Flows', that embraces ethnic sounds; and 'Seventh Heaven', long massage strokes with delicate piano. I'm booked in for the latter and already feel less tense after lounging on the white leather sofa in reception with a glass of chrysanthemum tea.
I enter the candlelit treatment room, where a bed with white cotton drapes beckons. After I inhale the scent of lavender oil, the therapist strokes along my back, while soft, tinkling piano plays against rustling winds and flowing rivers. At first, I think the sound of birds is part of the tune but am pleasantly surprised when I later realise it's coming from outside the spa.
The music - tracked by sensors attached to the therapist - falls almost silent as she places pressure on my spine then sparks back into life as she sweeps down my back. But as her movements become more repetitive so does the tune. My personalised soundtrack begins to sound like relaxing CDs you hear in most spas, and isn't quite the dramatic backdrop I was expecting.
Some days later, I put on my CD at home and attempt to recreate that blissed-out spa feeling. Listening to the meditative sounds of the gentle keys once more and imagining the therapist's hands reviving my stressed-out muscles is certainly enjoyable, but I can't help wishing that I could actually feel my shoulders being pummelled.
The Muusa treatment is available at Sense of Touch, Repulse Bay, The Repulse Bay Arcade, 109 Repulse Bay Road. Tel: 2592 9668, senseoftouch.com.hk