Koh Phangan is dubbed the island of paradise for many reasons - one being the variety of spas and traditional treatments available for those looking the ultimate relaxation. The Bay Residence team recently met island local Gabi, who is responsible for Reservations and Customer service at The Sanctuaryin Haad Tien. We had a chance to talk about the spa and life on Koh Phangan - take a look at what she had to say!
Does Sanctuary Spa offer any treatments that are special, signature or unique?
We offer northern Thai traditional tapping massage - or “tok sen”. This is a centuries-old practice that involves rhythmic method of tapping to clear blocked and negative energy and relaxes the muscles.You can choose from a relaxing session focusing on the line and points of the body, or a treatment that focuses on problematic area - especially injuries that cause pain in other parts of the body. This type of healing follows the lines of the body to identify the root area to work on. It can be quite a spiritual experience!
We also offer an array of body scrubs. These are especially good for customers on cleanse packages who want the full pamperingexperience as well as a skin detoxification.
Tell us about Haad Tien - what’s nearby?
Haad Tien is sandwiched between Haad Wai Nam and Had Yuan. This Tri Bay area is remote with minimal road access. Getting here is quite an interesting journey - especially during the monsoon - but we think that makes the landing all the more glorious. Its an odd phenomenon really because all three bays can be walked across in under fifteen minutes, yet the energy, the sand, the waves are completely different. You just have to come see for yourself to have a felt sense experience of the rawness and the feminine gentleness. A beautiful location.
Why do you think Thailand is becoming such a destination for wellness - retreats, classes, courses etc?
Thailand is the land of the free - the land of smiles. She opened her arms to welcome foreigners long before neighbouring countries did. And now Thailand is beginning to follow trends from the west, where people are increasingly health conscious and spiritually inquisitive.
Do you think this lifestyle is particularly popular on Koh Phangan?
Koh Phangan is a special place; in some ways it’s like a microcosm of Thailand. There are mountains, countryside, beaches, parties, temples, schools, spas and bars, not to mention love and other drugs. Here you can both detox and retox!
Tell us more!
Koh Phangan has everything for everyone at whichever crossroads, however old or young. She’s intriguing - she’ll will tempt you with cakes if you are on a cleanse and test your patience during the monsoon. I can’t really explain her particular magic - maybe it's the granite crystals - but it’s definitely a place of breakthroughs whether physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, sexual or social.
How do you feel about the recent partitioning of the island into zones?
I think the zoning will help add to the understanding that Koh Phangan is not just a party island. She will encourage you to radically love yourself unapologetically, whatever that will look like for you. It could be doing yoga everyday for a week’s retreat, pampering yourself with spa treatments; or maybe hiking up a heritage waterfall in the footsteps of former kings. And if you have the profound urge to boogie - Koh Phangan has great tunes for you too.
What are your top picks from Sanctuary Spa?
My top pick would be the Bali Scrub. A deep relaxing and cleansing cleansing scrub that will result in your cells being filled with gratitude.
When you get a day off, how do you spend it in Koh Phangan?
I usually clean my room and do laundry :). Once that is done there are two options; stay on the bay or head towards the other side of the island. There are always activities going on- the Hula Hoop Jam in Haad Yuan, a Reggae Party in Wai Nam, or simply some self-love and nurture at the spa! I also make a point to visit friends, indulge in a sauna at The Dome, or dine at the Art Cafe or shop in Thong Sala. But this weekend the plan I’ll be hopping on the ferry to Koh Samui to catch the new Star Wars!!
Want to check out Sanctuary Spa? Just ask us we will be happy to arrange transport for you straight from Bay Residence. Alternatively, sit back and let us arrange for massages, beauty treatments, private yoga lessons and more in the comfort of your own Bay Villa as you overlook the serene Haad Salad bay.
Many thanks to Gabi and the Sanctuary Spa team for your time and photos.