When I lived in the UK I thought the height of male grooming was going to the barbers once every four weeks instead of six. That changed when I moved to Dubai and the local barber shop asked me if I would like a shave and a manicure I nervously said yes, and this changed my life.
Despite it being common place, I still cop some stick from some of the more “traditional” boys, but looking after oneself after a tough week flying around the Middle East is a truly great way to kick off the weekend. I can’t be the only one who thinks so, as there are a number of men’s spas in the vicinity of where I live. I thought I would take the lid of what it is like to go and visit one.
Just along the JBR walk is a very upmarket Men’s Spa called 1847 Pressing the secret button on the side and the door glides open like something out of Star Trek. Along, with a stylish reception and waiting area the feeling is one of a high tech sanctuary.
Before going, it is wise to make a booking and there is a rather extensive menu to choose from. From regular hair dressing, facials and manicures to some rather tempting sounding massage treatments such as the “hot stone massage” it can be a little bewildering. After five weeks on the road I opted for the exotic “Four Hands Massage” it sounded highly indulgent and I hoped it was going to be worth it.
After a short wait, the massage therapist ushered me upstairs to a very smart treatment room and instructed me replace my clothes with the large towel on the table and that she would be back shortly with the second therapist. I asked if they had the disposable underwear, the answer was met with a giggle and a point at the towel. Now, I hope as a seasoned expat I would have left the British prude part of me at home, but sat on the treatment table wearing only a large towel does put thoughts of doubt through one’s mind.
A gentle knock on the door and the two therapists appeared. They asked me to lie down on my front and without fuss I was positioned for treatment. Then there was an interesting sensation when the large towel I was wearing was replaced with something that felt about the size of a face cloth. This was then folded in three which “I think” just about covered my posterior. Any thought of embarrassment was instantly dismissed as the therapists set to work. Almost in perfect sync each therapist took one half of my body and administered an intense massage the full length of my body. With liberal amount of oil and increasing pressure it was hard to tell how many hands were actually on me – but it felt to be just the right amount. When it was time to turn over – again my modesty was expertly protected. Though I was not sure how I felt about the comment “Would sir, like a larger towel?” would it have been bragging to say yes?
The front side massage continued in the same vein, I was totally relaxed and continued to enjoy the treatment. The positioning of the small towel was good over the crown jewels – though I was slightly perturbed at the “tucking” that was certainly needed to protect everyone’s dignity, but it did catch me off guard with the first “tuck”.
All too soon the hour was over. I was asked if I would like to shower, based on the amount of oil on me it was a sensible choice. I was left feeling revitalized and having gone to the gym earlier that day it was a fab reward for the morning’s effort.
Overall – 1847 is a real special treat. The environment is modern and welcoming. The therapists are polite, attentive and professional. It is a little expensive – but hey it’s ok. After all – what did that ad once say? “Because you’re worth it!” 9/10