Review: Hong Kong sounds feature in audio therapy package at Grand Hyatt’s Plateau Spa
The Plateau Spa’s latest massage treatment blends the sounds of Hong Kong, providing a sensory journey that will send you straight to la-la land
The Plateau Spa at the Grand Hyatt has tapped into the sound-therapy trend – think gong baths and singing bowls – sweeping the wellness industry by partnering with French audio experts Devialet to present its “Voyage des Sens” spa experience.
The treatment (HK$1,300/60 minutes) comprises a full-body massage, set to a soundtrack produced and recorded by Devialet with help from Thai-based Karma Sound Studios (studio founder Chris Craker is an ex senior vice-president of Sony Music), with audio inspired by the sounds of Hong Kong, from the Po Lin Monastery, Dragon’s Back in the southeast of Hong Kong Island, to an erhu player in Causeway Bay and the Yuen Po Street Bird Garden.
The session starts with noisy street sounds, much like where I just came from in Wan Chai: people chatting, horns honking, traffic lights blipping … is that the faint bark of a dog? Once horizontal I’m transported to a beach – and my childhood growing up on the coast of Tasmania: birds are chirping, the crashing waves and blowing wind intentionally synchronised with therapist Michelle’s long and gentle strokes. Now I’m in a rainforest just in time for a thundery afternoon downpour.
What’s that noise … a bird squawking or a monkey’s mating call? I don’t care because I’m drifting, momentarily tuning into more sounds – the clinking of glass wind chimes, a chanting monk.
The session wraps up with the deep soothing sound of a beating heart that envelopes me like a warm blanket, or maybe I’m confusing it with the actual warm blanket I’m wrapped in, or maybe it’s the Gold Phantom speakers that create low-frequency sound of 15Hz – levels, I’m told, that you don’t hear but feel. Anyway, I don’t care how I got into this Zen-like state. I’m happy. I don’t want to leave the massage table.
The most mind-blowing part of this treatment is the feeling of being totally immersed in the crystal-clear sounds, where you can pick up every crunch of a sand particle, every splash of water hitting a rock, while simultaneously zooming back to a time and place.
It’s a relaxing, meditative pamper session, so don’t enter expecting a deep rub for your tight muscles or to be invigorated.
Not even the sugar rush from a post-treatment green-tea mango pudding could snap me out of my euphoric state. Devialet’s aim was to “explore the imaginative potential of audio storytelling, to allow the relaxed mind to travel deep into its meditative state”. Mission accomplished.
Plateau Spa at Grand Hyatt, 11/F, 1 Harbour Road, Wan Chai, tel: 2584 7688.
Voyage des Sens (HK$1,300/60 minutes) is available until March 2018.