Granted, the best cure for a hangover is to abstain from drinking, but not everyone is blessed with that willpower. Sense of Touch spa in Lan Kwai Fong has cottoned onto that fact, recently launching a new treatment, the Sweetest Hangover. The two-hour treatment is a trio of steps combined to detoxify, relax and rejuvenate - a big promise for seasoned drinkers.
Fortunately the treatment is confined to one room, so it doesn't require much effort on the part of the delicate recipient. Step one is 20 minutes in a deep Japanese soaking tub using preservative-free seaweed harvested from Ireland under the country's Voya brand. As the seaweed oils seep into the warm water, it reputedly restores lost minerals and vitamins to the body. It takes a minute or two to get used to the large chunks of floating algae, but the darkened room and neck-deep water is an ideal trigger to start the relaxation process.
Once out of the bath, it's onto the treatment bed for a full-body exfoliation scrub using a cane sugar paste infused with peppermint. Scrubs are often messy and more tiresome than beneficial, but this one was applied deftly and vigorously to leave a slight menthol tingle.
After a quick shower, there's a choice of three one-hour massages: de-stress (using deep-tissue massage on tension points); relax (a more gentle Swedish-style massage); and detox (lymphatic drainage to release toxins and water retention). The massage oil is a calming blend of seaweed oil infused with essential oils of lavender, peppermint and lemongrass. The de-stress massage was pleasantly painful, focusing on back, neck, shoulders and temple. And it worked - my excess-induced headache dissolved by the end of the treatment.
Sense of Touch has a number of salons across Hong Kong, including in Repulse Bay and Sai Kung. The Lan Kwai Fong branch is in a central spot, but there are resultant drawbacks. Strains of Journey and AC/DC from neighbouring bars waft clearly into treatment rooms. And with limited space, there's no quiet room for unwinding pre- or post-treatments. But treatments rooms are clean, and staff members are attentive and friendly.
There's also a good selection of products for sale from brands such as Aromatherapy Associates, Elemis, Dermalogica and Becca.
The Sweetest Hangover, 120 minutes, HK$1,590; 52 D'Aguilar Street, Lan Kwai Fong, Central, tel: 2526 6918