Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Where Did All That Salt Come From?

My latest policy has been that it doesn’t matter what or where the Conference Hotel is located, I will book in there whenever I go away on business. This is a result of many hours of frustration trying to find my way to various locations.

Take this morning for instance – armed with a map, excellent directions and a “Garmin” I still managed to get lost for over an hour in a 1km radius from the Hyatt Hotel in Joburg. I have to thank the Parking Attendant for not going into panic mode as I sat there sobbing in his car park..

As a result, tonight it’s the Radisson Blu Hotel in Sandton. First glance is this is a block of concrete, set in the middle of a constant building site and further confused by the fact the reception is on the 13th Floor. It’s a bit too angular for my liking and being a closet si-fi addict, the warped mirrors, metal spheres and strange egg like objects outside the lifts, resemble props from a scene from the “V” series and I half expected them to crack open and goodness knows what to come out. I do realise the architectural fashonista’s will be shouting me down as an ignorant know-nothing from up North as I am sure this style is the height of “now”, but it’s not really my thing. Redeeming qualities were however their outstanding pillows which are a completely different size and the fact my television greeted me by name (I am not telling stories)

With the afternoon to spare and still in search of the ultimate experience, I headed for the Amani Spa in the hotel, for an Indian Head Massage. What a treat. Rozelle my beauty therapist was built like a sylph with the strength of a body builder – a total chill (so I thought). After my treatment she took me for a tour of the Spa and there is where I found The Salt Room. Now this is the ultimate restoration – mind and body. It is the first Salt Room in Africa (being a European concept) and the idea behind it is that as the room gently heats, it purifies the air and is wonderful for respiratory ailments, colds and flu, ear ache just to name a few – but more importantly has extreme relaxation properties. Well I wasn’t leaving without trying it and I have say, with thick white salt on the floor like sea sand and ionized salt walls with rows of purple lighting, you have to be forgiven for feeling like you had arrived in a mystical cavern far from home – well that was the whimsical thought I had before I fell asleep...

So it just goes to show, first impressions aren’t always right and the best surprises are often the ones that aren’t immediately obvious!

Radisson Blu Hotel, Sandton, Johannesburg - http://www.radissonblu.com/
Amani African Spas - http://www.amanispas.co.za/

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