I appreciate when resorts focus on a certain market, style or ambience instead of being all things to all people. Well, Joali Being is 100% focused on well-being:
· “Maldives’ first luxury bespoke wellbeing resort…Here guests are guided on the path to self-discovery and renewal.”
I still remember when many resorts didn’t have spas back in the 90s. Now an entire island is dedicated to being one big spa experience.
Many wellness products and spa “treatments” are couched in all sorts of medical lingo to make them sound more clinical, but Velaa is taking “wellness” quite seriously with a licensed medical doctor offering consultations for things such as:
- Blood testing (Samsung Labgeo, HC10, PT10)
- IV therapy
- Food intolerance profile
- Blood Pressure
- In Body Composition
While guests might come to the Maldives to check out the bioluminescence of the plankton in the Maldivian waters, they acan also check out their own bioresonance at Joali Being. The “Amazing Hotels: Life Beyond the Lobby” episode about the Maldives hopped over to Joali’s latest property to see the latest tech for diagnosis and informing wellbeing. The host Monica Galetti visits its Areka Wellbeing Center to try out its “bio-resonance device which reads the energy produced by the living cells in her body.”
Sun Siyam Iru Veli isn’t the first spa treatment with a view, but it is the one of the best I have come across. Both the glass floor portal and the head rest are open enough for easily opening your eyes and gazing at the aquatic life passing by. And the ocean underneath has several fish-attracting coral croppings to maximise the visual interest. [NOTE: I titled this post “Clear View” to distinguish it from another fine spa view at Coco Bodu Hithi, but which it obstructed a bit by the design on the glass and the flower arrangement on top]
A treatment room with a view.
While most visitors to the Maldives come for the solar-powered heat therapy, Joali Being also offers the counterpoint treatment of cryotherapy:
- “An innovative extreme-cold therapy that boosts cellular activity to support weight management, with up to 800 calories burned in a single session. Performed in our cryo:one chamber.
A spa treatment, especially in the Maldives, isn’t just about the targeted part of the body, but is also an immersive experience of relaxation and comfort. With massages, I do sort of appreciate a lovely location, but frankly when you are face down with your eyes closed, there is not much opportunity to enjoy them. So for massage treatments, the sensory luxury is all about touch – the feel of the plush table and of course the expert therapists.
Ritz Carlton Maldives’ spa simply exudes sensual softness in every details. You change into super silk soft robes. The face rest not only featured a spongy cushion, but also it was covered with an ultra soft chamois. The same chamois texture that covered the entire bed. And Dankaj, my masseur, provide a treatment that was fluid and tender while being firm enough to coax the tight muscles out of their tension (I find male masseurs to often be too mechanical and firm) with just the right pressure like the right amount of chili in a curry.
Some spas are on the island and some spas are overwater, but at Kuda Villingili the spas have their own very own island complete with overwater treatment rooms.
A strong spine is literally the backbone of healthy living. My interest is in sport and I am always struck by how (literally) central the importance of posture was for so many activities. I heard our ballroom dance teacher giving me the exact same tips about “shoulders down and back, pelvis forward, back straight”, that I gave my rowing students. Of course, back pain seems to be the most common affliction of aging which again all boils down to the spine. Ritz Carlton Maldives hosted Lorelei “Yoyi” Bulan who is a spine health expert during our stay. She walked me through a number of demonstrations and exercises (see videos) to gently activate, limber and strengthen my spine. Relieving stress discomfort at the literal “core”.
When we first started coming to the Maldives in the 1990s, most resorts didn’t have spas. A few 5-star properties we stay at had a therapist on staff who could do a treatment by appointment often in some jury-rigged, tucked away part of the island. But now, spas are don’t just offer relaxing massages, but rather an array of treatments as extensive as a typical breakfast buffet. And to help navigate this bewildering set of options at Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi is the Maldives first “wellness concierge”:
- “Aqua Wellness Centre, featuring a brand-new Hydrotherapy Pool, Maldives first-ever wellness concierge as well as unique spa treatments, all surrounded by a lush botanical garden facing the Indian Ocean. The brand new 7,735 square-foot elaborate Aqua Wellness Centre features a custom-built Hydrotherapy Pool, ice fountain, steam room and sauna. Set atop the crystal Maldivian waters, the 2,906 square-foot outdoor pool is designed in zones, where each station of the pool targets a different part of the body. The zones – which include jet bath, air jets, shower jets, and massage lounger.”