Despite the fact that Tokyo is not as well known as say Bali or the Thai island of Koh Samui for its rejuvenating health and wellness treatments, there are quite a few places where tourists and business travellers can give their bodies and souls a spot of pampering. The first place to start would be with a visit to the famed onsen spa baths or the public baths known as sento.
La Qua is rated as the top onsen spa in the city itself. The facility is beside Tokyo Dome City and its baths are fed by a natural spring 1,700 metres below the surface of the earth. As well as a good soak in the outdoor pools, La Qua has several saunas and the option of a massage.
Oedo Onsen Monogatari is an onsen complex on Tokyo Bay’s Odaiba Island that redefines the meaning of Japanese bath. There are a total of 14 different bathing options at the complex. Maenohara Onsen at Sayano Yudokoro in the northern area of Itabashi also features an assortment of baths ranging from the hot-stone ganbanyoku to the thermal netsunoyu.
A sensory delight, those devoted to them claim onsen baths help with health issues such as bad blood circulation and rheumatism too. Four- and five-star hotels like the Ritz-Carlton, the Peninsula, the Mandarin Oriental and the Four Seasons invariably have onsite spas which come with onsens.
Luxury hotel spas are usually open to non-residents. Together with onsen baths they offer a full range of massages including raku, Thai, hot-stone, ayurvedic and Balinese. Facials, body scrubs, detox treatments and aromatherapy are the other key treatments. A few day spas provide similar kinds of wellness therapies and packages.
The Erawan Thai Traditional Massage is across from Roppongi Hills and, as it says in its advertisements, does things the Thai way. Masseuses carry out four-hands massages, couples massages, aromatherapy and foot reflexology massages with Thai herbs and ointments using time-honoured techniques.