Each year, the Prestige Hong Kong editorial team and a carefully selected panel of judges selflessly put themselves at the mercy of spa therapists and beauticians, simultaneously lathering themselves in creams and salves while layering on shadows and glosses. We invited three society mavens who know a thing or two about being beautiful to help judge the awards. This year, Faye Tsui, Helen Ma and Cindy Yeung were our guest judges.
Valmont’s signature facial is our new obsession. Four masks, extensive massage and even a quick eyebrow touch-up are all included in this magical experience. At the heart of Valmont’s product development is sensory relief, so every formula contains a slightly muted scent derived through botanical extraction. Combine this dedicated approach to complete relaxation with the brand’s renowned Butterfly Movement massage and you get nirvana and an unparalleled glow when you return to the outside world.
Treat yourself to a luxurious manicure and pedicure at The Mandarin Salon at Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong. Sip on a delicious drink and enjoy the stunning Victoria Harbour view while your nails are polished to perfection. If you’re in the mood for something a little more fun then pick a design from the salon’s thick stack of nail stickers.
Waxing is a pain, figuratively and literally, so we understand why everybody tries every available option before settling on a regular therapist. At Sense of Touch, you’re in safe hands no matter which area you want depilated. The treatment’s superior wax and the lightning hands of the therapist result in a fast, painless and fuss-free procedure that you won’t feel the need to postpone.
Using high-tech machinery, fat tissue is attacked and literally melts from the body via lymphatic drainage in this quick solution to stubborn cellulite and unsightly weight. Sessions last only 15-45 minutes, making this the quickest, most painless diet you’ve ever had – and in the most pleasant environment, too.
This three-part treatment includes a full-body ginseng body scrub, Chinese Meridian Massage and China’s famed cupping treatment to help you release any tension your body might be harbouring. Drawing from Eastern medicinal remedies, the two-hour session will have you emerging from the Landmark Mandarin with your body smooth, supple and reinvigorated.
The Melo Spa at Hyatt Regency Hong Kong, Sha Tin is an oasis of calm and comfort. Here, you can relax and rejuvenate as expert hands assuage your stress using a range of softly scented lotions. The Garden of England Rose treatment sees a nourishing trio of rose, camelina and poppy-seed oils applied to the whole body, which – together with a firm massage that alleviates pain and soothes even the most tired muscles – leaves you beautifully moisturised and with radiant skin.
Harried and stressed with nary a moment to relax, let alone spend quality time with your partner? The Landmark Mandarin Oriental Spa has just the ticket. This treatment allows you to reconnect with your partner and relax. Retreat into the spa’s sanctuary suite and indulge in a private steam sauna and aroma bath followed by the Oriental Essence massage. Sequester yourselves in the space afterwards for some additional relaxation and emerge refreshed two-and-a-half hours later.
To step into The Mandarin Barber is to step into a less hurried era – and one, moreover, with a genuine air of old Hong Kong. Indeed, I can think of few better or more relaxing ways for a guy to start a day (the others I won’t go into here) than to wander into this lovely, clubby old bolthole for a leisurely shave. After I’m swaddled from the neck up in steaming-hot towels, a charming old chap gently and painstakingly runs a razor across my face for the best part of 30 minutes – and with Chet Baker crooning moodily in the background, time almost stands still. I have a goatee, which he tidies up beautifully, and though on leaving I didn’t think this was the closest shave I’ve ever had, the following morning my face and neck still felt unusually smooth. This is a treat that’s worth indulging in time and again.
You’d be surprised how Diva Lashes can change the look of your entire face while still looking completely natural. A keratin lash-lifting treatment, it doesn’t involve any falsies or additions, so there’s no worry of fallout or patchiness as the weeks go by, but the whole eye area appears more open and bright. The effects also last as long as your lashes do – and each lash typically lives on your eyelid for some six to ten weeks.
We gave a 10 out of 10 to the Four Seasons’ spa for this 120-minute healing treatment, which uses manual massage, crystals and sound therapy to open chakras and release emotional tension. There’s no better way to achieve peace of mind and allow universal energy to penetrate the body so it can heal itself.
Hidden away in the hills of Sai Kung, Fivelements Spa is on the grounds of the Hong Kong Golf and Tennis Academy. This three-part treatment involves a private sauna session in the spa’s detox suite followed by a full body exfoliation using a mineral rich “black diamond powder” made from carbonised Balinese bamboo. This powder is known to absorb toxins and impurities and replenish skin with minerals. Finally, the treatment ends with a divine back, neck and shoulder massage designed to promote circulatory and lymphatic movement to faster rid your body of waste. Return to the city with your body feeling good as new.
The hottest treatment in town for instantly effective lifting, tightening and firming of the face, eye and neck areas, Hifu (which stands for high-intensity focused ultrasound) is no pleasant experience, but we loved it at Sense of Touch’s spa in Crown Plaza in Tseung Kwan O, which features a Zen environment and stand-alone rooms in a courtyard, as well as experienced therapists who guide you every step of the way and communicate all your data and needs immediately to an on-call doctor (that is, if you don’t choose to have a doctor do the treatment in the first place). The results are just amazing.
Facialist of the Year
Facials are available on every street corner. Some can be fantastic, some can be run of the mill, but what really keeps customers going back is the therapist that administers the treatment. High rollers and beauty editors alike are in love with the hands of Joey Mok at Joyce Beauty. Be it the Tatcha treatment or the Omorovicza facial, Joey’s expertise and attention to detail (no pore goes unexamined) – tailoring each treatment to the client’s needs – are unparalleled. Your face leaves with every blemish banished and every blackhead extracted, and the effects afterwards are to die for.