Gayatri Bhaumik checks-in for a wellness staycation at Four Seasons Hong Kong.
As Hong Kong begins to ease the restrictions that have governed the territory during the COVID-19 pandemic, the city’s hard-hit hotels are gearing up to welcome guests back.
With international tourism unlikely to return this summer, the city’s top properties are encouraging Hong Kong residents to splash out on a staycation. And Four Seasons Hong Kong is well ahead of the curve with no less than eight different packages set to debut in June.
The hotel is aiming to cover all demographics with its smorgasbord of offers. A bespoke collection of packages under the banner ‘Escape to Reconnect’ allow guests with different interests to experience the hotel.
So, whether you’re a family looking for some quality bonding time, a foodie wanting to try the property’s three Michelin-starred restaurants, a spa maven hoping to indulge in some pampering, or a busy urban dweller looking to check in just for the day, you’ll find something that suits.
I slipped into the hotel on a Friday afternoon to try their new wellness package. It was lovely to see the lobby buzzing and the restaurants full – a contrast to when I visited two weeks earlier for lunch at Caprice.
(My staycation took place just before the wellness package had been fully launched, so some of the inclusions will be different by the time you go to book it – the updated details can be found below).
The Four Seasons Spa is easily one of the best wellness centres in town. I enjoyed the 60-minute Second Skin Facial that uses French-made skincare products by Biologique Recherche. By the time I walked out of the cosy treatment room, my skin was well-restored from the havoc that daily mask-wearing had wreaked.
The Spa has also recently introduced private Vibrational Sound Therapy sessions, which is a great experience if you’re looking for a little bit of calm. My 30-minute session began with a rather intense sage cleansing. If you haven’t tried it before, the practitioner waves a sage bundle around your body to ground your energy and help connect you with the earth. This was swiftly followed by a singing bowl meditation that left me more relaxed than I have felt in months.
It may sound like new-age nonsense, but go in with an open mind – I was surprised by just how many benefits I reaped from this experience.
The suite life
I check into one of the hotel’s Harbourview Suites; they are huge! Far too big for just one person (oh, the perils of life as a travel journalist). The spacious living room is decked out with a four-person dining table (perfect for the next morning’s in-room breakfast), a plush sitting area facing a wall-mounted TV, an expansive worktable with outlets and stationery galore, and of course, a well-stocked minibar.
The equally expansive bedroom is dominated by a (very comfortable) super-king bed dressed in crisp white linens. It also features two armchairs, a large flatscreen and a walk-in wardrobe. Through grand double doors, the marble-clad bathroom makes getting ready for bed (or the day) a breeze. There’s a double vanity with a small screen built into the mirror; a separate shower and deep-soak tub; and plenty of Bulgari amenities to keep you squeaky clean.
It’s all tied together with plenty of natural light filtering in through floor-to-ceiling windows that look across Victoria Harbour towards Tsim Sha Tsui.
Guests can also enjoy one-on-one time with the property’s award-winning experts. The Masters of Craft series is an add-on experience available to all hotel guests and allows you to learn to cook with the chefs at Michelin-starred restaurants Caprice and Lung King Heen or practise wellness rituals with the spa’s therapists.
I chose to take a cocktail masterclass with Lorenzo Antinori, the head mixologist at Caprice Bar. From start to finish, the experience was a barrel of laughs, but it’s clear that Lorenzo takes his craft seriously (and expects wannabe bartenders to, too!).
My first task was to learn to make a Gin Fizz. I don’t want to boast, but I passed with flying colours the first time around and was invited to create my own cocktail based on the proportions and techniques I’d already honed mixing the Gin Fizz.
After a few minutes of careful deliberation over ingredients and precise attention to technique, my still-unnamed concoction of vodka, pineapple juice, lime cordial, muddle apricot, and ginger ale got Lorenzo’s seal of approval and an invitation for a guest shift behind the bar (he may have been joking!).
I ended the evening with a friend, happily ensconced in one of the Bar’s cosiest corners, enjoying well-made cocktails (done by Lorenzo, not me!) and a hefty charcuterie board with panoramic harbour views. This is the kind of place where you can easily while away several hours.
With everything that’s been going on in Hong Kong – and the near certainty that none of us are going to be travelling this summer – hotel staycations are going to be much sought after. What I liked about the Four Seasons deals is that they’re packed with fabulous extras.
If you’re looking to destress (homeschooling has been brutal, after all), opt for the Wellness Retreat. I checked out feeling completely rejuvenated after the meditation (and the best night’s sleep I’ve had in weeks) and with glowing skin thanks to the highly effective facial.
What: The Wellness Package includes one night’s accommodation, Well Feeling breakfast for two, one 60-minute Ayurveda Lifting Facial by Subtle Energies, one 60-minute customised body massage, thirty-minute guided meditation session for two, thirty-minute Tibetan Singing Bowl session for two, thirty-minute nutrition consultation with culinary experts for two, welcome amenity by Sweaty Betty, explore Well Feeling menus at all hotel dining venues, add a Masters of Craft experience for $1,290/person.
How much: From $6,100.
When: Until December 31, 2020.
Book now: Four Seasons Hong Kong.
Asia Family Traveller was a guest of Four Seasons Hong Kong.