Multiple treatment rooms are booked around the clock by desperate city slickers looking for a bit of down time. Patient masseurs and therapists work tirelessly on their charges, shuffling them along in order to get the next client in their clutches.
Bakwena Day Spa in Centurion is a completely different experience. You’re made to feel like royalty from the time that you arrive until you walk out the door. After a bit of a tense drive to the spa for our half day package – the website’s directions were a bit confusing and the satellite navigation was no help – we arrived a few minutes late. However, all of the tension soon melted away. Instead of being marched to a treatment room, we were sent to a sunny space for a relaxed breakfast and a much-needed cup of coffee.
Rather than sporting the usual white minimalist look that most spas favour, Bakwena’s decor is bright and cheerful. Purple and green towels, flowers and draping make the rooms inviting and unintimidating, and are accentuated by whimsical words of inspiration on the walls and tables. A cute, quirky touch was a heart with the word “love” on it that stares up at you from below the massage table when you’re lying face-down.
The spa’s half day package includes a scalp, neck and shoulder massage, a foot, ankle and calf massage and a full body massage incorporating hot stones. The highlight was definitely the neck and shoulder massage. In a room where you can hear water babbling outside, the massage is perfect for tense shoulders, and we left for our next treatment in a sleepy stupor.
A nice surprise was the outdoor area where you have your foot massage, which includes a sugary scrub and a massage with vanilla cream.
The staff were friendly, efficient and really seemed to take pride in their work. You are given a card to rate each massage with the relevant spa worker’s name next to it, and the three people that gave me my treatments – Kabelo, Josephine and Sylvia – were all given rave reviews.