With their gilded interiors and lavish treatment menus, the opulent spas of the UAE are everything a seasoned spa junkie could wish for. But in a step away from what some may view as “excessiveness”, Swedish wellness brand, Raison d’Etre, has opened its doors in Dubai in the form of the LivNordic Spa & Wellness.
As with many of Scandinavia’s unique traditions, the Swedish spa culture is intimately connected with nature and the seasons. The contrasts between the perpetual winter darkness and the constant summer light are reflected in the LivNordic concept. “It’s a blend of age-old Nordic health traditions combined with the latest in spa and wellness technologies,” said the spa director, Carolina Moquist, as she showed me around the property.
The spa focuses on the traditional Nordic bathing rituals, incorporating a birch wood sauna and an icy plunge pool to alternate between. I’m told it gets the blood pumping, tighten pores and boost the immune system. It also features a breezy grooming area where you can get a spa mani/pedi or quick blowdry using all-natural and organic product ranges like Rahua; as well as a high-tech gym with breathtaking, panoramic views of the marina.
The spa menu is simple yet comprehensive. It’s divided into three variations of treatments depending on what you’re looking for, each with apt Swedish names. Stilla– calm, Ren– clean or Djup– deep. I decided to go for the Arctic Detox from the cleansing Ren selection. It began with an intensive full body scrub to slough away dead skin and initiate the detoxification process. After a quick shower, we move on to the Swedish Detox Massage. Don’t be fooled by the name, this step is a far cry from the snooze-inducing massages you may be used to. It combines quick-paced kneading and rhythmic tapping to rev up the metabolism and invigorate the body. Next came the cupping stage. As with the other processes, cupping is not uncomfortable but it’s not meant to be particularly relaxing either. Silicon suction cups are attached and swept along the skin to manipulate the muscles and encourage lymphatic drainage. Two hours later, the treatment was complete and I felt surprisingly revitalised. My limbs felt lighter and my skin was visibly smoother and brighter.
Later, I headed to the chic yet cosy relaxation area (think simple stone-grey walls, wooden floors and accents, warm faux fire places and impossibly snug Scandinavian woollen blankets- bliss!) where I was treated to a delicious blueberry tea and dried fruits and nuts to replenish and ease myself back in to the real world.
All in all, this spa provides exceptional treatments and services carried out by skilled professionals, using high-quality natural products; catering to all aspects of health and wellbeing- without the usual glitz and fuss. A must-try for minimalists and indulgent beauty lovers alike.
Details: LivNordic Spa & Wellness, Cayan Tower, Dubai Marina, Tel: (+971) 4 551 6414
Click through the gallery for a closer look inside.