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Lend me your ears

Lend me your ears
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First Published: Mon, Sep 15 2008. 12 03 AM IST

The ear spa at CosmicMandala15.
The ear spa at CosmicMandala15.
Updated: Mon, Sep 15 2008. 12 03 AM IST
EAR SPA AT COSMICMANDALA15, MUMBAI
Okay, we’ll be honest. The only reason we paid any attention to one more “urban day retreat” with “globally inspired therapies” was because we spotted a phrase which we had never seen before on a spa menu — “ear spa”.
CosmicMandala15 is located in a 140-year-old heritage building in south Mumbai’s Madame Cama Road. It has five treatment rooms — separate ones for foot massages and facials, one for Thai massages, a bamboo-walled tent room and a regular indoor room.
The ear spa at CosmicMandala15.
The therapists have been trained by two Thai teachers from the WatPo Thai Traditional Massage School. They use Eminence organic products for most treatments. The decor is familiar — lots of Buddha paintings and heads everywhere. The experience is similar to a home which has been converted to a spa.
I was a little alarmed when managing director Heymal Kampani showed me the long wax candles that are used for the ear spa treatment. It is a hollow tube of wax; quarter of an inch is inserted in the ear, and the other end is set alight. It’s supposed to help relieve insomnia, migraine and clear the sinuses, though Kampani stresses it is in no way a miracle cure.
I also signed up for the Holistic Purifying Back Work, which included a scrub, wrap and massage for the back.
The good stuff
They’ve made the most of the space, utilizing the open terrace for foot massages and a domed room with gaddi-type massage beds on the floor for traditional Thai massages. Before the treatment, I was given a delightful foot wash complete with rose petals and salt scrub.
The ear treatment was rather interesting. You hear a crackling-sizzling sound and feel mild heat in the ear. The therapist massages your outer ear as the candle burns for around 10-12 minutes. There was no discomfort and I realized, when she moved to the other ear, that my sinuses were clearer and I could breathe better on that side.
CosmicMandala15 also reinforced my belief that a scrub-wrap is the best treatment to have at a spa. For the Holistic Purifying Back Work, I was scrubbed down with a green tea scrub. After that a thick layer of a similar mask was applied, banana leaves layered over it and steaming towels spread over the leaves.
The spicy clove, mint and ginger-flavoured herbal tea laced with honey, which was served after the therapy, was also great.
The not-so-good
CosmicMandala15 misses some of the small details which make a good spa great. The complimentary foot wash could have been done in the treatment room; instead it was done in the foot reflexology area, which means you have to walk there and back to your room in your robe, in plain view of the reception area.
The towels that were used to take off the scrub and wrap were cold, despite being taken out of a microwave-type towel warmer. And since the area is not soundproof, staff at the front desk should be encouraged to speak softly.
Talk plastic
Rs1,000 for the ear spa and Rs1,800 for the Holistic Purifying Back Work. Massages are around Rs2,700. A tax of 12.3% is added to all treatments.
Call 022-22043737 for details and appointments.
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First Published: Mon, Sep 15 2008. 12 03 AM IST
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