For the average, time-strapped, office-bound executive, trying to get a beauty appointment at either of the enclaves – Sentosa Island for the lushest luxury spas, and Orchard Road for most up-to-date aesthetic clinics – would mean having to take an entire day off, or sacrificing precious lunch periods for a popular, day-time slot. Want to go for a facial or a round of Thermage after work? Fat chance: Most salons, spas and clinics shut their doors at 7pm.
In the past few years, several enterprising aestheticians and doctors have noticed this problem, and have began to locate their services closer to the financial belt. The Sloane Clinic has opened the Citysphere branch, at Raffles Place, while a few other aesthetics salons have done likewise.
Now, two new beauty venues have upped the ante. And unlike their predecessors, they aren’t operating satellite clinics or small-scale establishments. They are supersizing with massive floor space and top-of-the-line services, which are catered to the convenience of the executives around their neighbouring skyscrapers. With the arrival of these behemoths, the message is clear: The CBD is officially the hot new place to get beautiful.
It’s not just massive – it also boasts facilities that are usually found only in sprawling outdoor spas. At over 10,000 sq feet with 22 treatment rooms (including three VIP couple suites) spread over two floors, the establishment has a heated indoor pool, a crystal steam room, a wood-panelled Scandinavian-style sauna, and even an organic cafe serving fresh juices and healthy fare.
It doesn’t skimp on toiletries either. Spa Club uses products from award-winning spa brand Ila, which counts Hollywood A-listers Gwyneth Paltrow and Natalie Portman as loyal fans.
The menu is extensive with over 60 treatments, from the spa’s signature Lava Bambu Massage, which uses a porcelain massager shaped like a stick of bamboo to work out muscle knots and kinks, to the state-of-the-art Spa C Hydrafacial, a skin-resurfacing treatment using high-powered jets of water.
“To cater to busy working executives, we stay open until 2am every day so customers don’t have to worry about rushing from work to treatments before closing time,” says founder and CEO Gerald Teo.
Another thoughtful perk: The spa offers limousine transfers to and from any location within the Central Business District on demand.
Spa Club is at #01-00 Fu Yuen Building, 75 Beach Road, tel: 6339-9238.
This aesthetics centre resembles an art gallery. There are quirky light fixtures and furniture by Moooi, the Dutch design house helmed by artist and designer Marcel Wanders – the man behind the packaging for Cosme Decorte AQMW products. The 5,000 sq ft all-white space is wide, spacious and well-lit with a minimalist feel and clean lines, while novelty art pieces grace the walls of every one of its 25 treatment rooms.
This flagship (there are three other Only outlets at Scotts Road, Holland Village and Dhoby Ghaut) offers services ranging from body sculpting and facial rejuvenation to laser hair removal and even teeth whitening. As co-founder Jermaine Teo says: “It’s a one-stop beauty location.”
The services offered are specially curated by Teo’s husband Adren How, who began as a medical aesthetic product distributor and is presently the CEO of Only Group. They are meant to be not just effective, but also quick for time-strapped executives.
With 25 rooms and an army of trained therapists, waiting time is also greatly reduced – only about five to 10 minutes during peak periods – so you can have a facial and still have time for actual lunch during lunchtime.
Only is at #09-00 RB Capital, 22 Malacca Street, tel: 6220-4434.
This article first appeared in Female May 2012.