Tomorrow is my high school close friend’s birthday! And our other friend and I wanted to celebrate it with her in a special way. Why? ‘Cause this might be her last with us for a while as she’s bound to move to UK for work.
I’ve seen my friend’s struggle as a nurse here in the Philippines especially when the profession suddenly boomed, then faded as quickly as it arose. That time, there were a lot of nursing students and fresh graduates that were having difficulties getting a job due to over supply. International opportunities were closing down, and locally there’s really not much demand for nurses (aside from the fact that the remuneration packages are not at all tempting).
And so my friend hopped from one job to another, from clinics to laboratories, until finally getting in the National Kidney and Transplant Institute, a public hospital. I learned from her stories that working in a government hospital is actually an advantage for a nurse’s experience though getting into one is a game of politics.
So not long after, I wasn’t surprised when she updated us that she is resigning. What shocked me was that she already has a contract to work in the Royal London Hospital! I cannot express how happy and proud I am of her! I know this was her goal all along and she is finally so close to achieving it.
We really wanted this celebration to be special, while at the same time having lots of time to just talk and catch up. So we narrowed down our choice to a pampering session and were considering the usual ones like Wensha and Lasema. We found out that Lasema has closed down (temporarily?) and we were a bit hesitant with Wensha since it’s been getting more negative reviews lately. Good thing we found in spot.ph that there’s a new Onsen spa that just opened in I’m Hotel in Makati, and they are offering it at an introductory price of only Php1,500.00. It was still a bit expensive in my opinion though that thought quickly escaped me when I found out two things: BUFFET and YUKATA. They definitely got me with those.
The Onsen Spa
We booked for massages at 4pm and were there before 3pm so we can still enjoy the other facilities. Most of our free time were however unsurprisingly spent taking pictures instead, and ended up only lounging at the onsen and didn’t get to try their steam and sauna.
One of our hesitations in pushing through was actually the need to get totally naked in the onsen. We were from an exclusive all-girls high school so this shouldn’t be a concern. Haha! But still. Anyway. We got through the awkwardness and surpassed this test of friendship!
Btw, the yukatas are huge! They only offered size L. I was able to find a comfortable way of wrapping it around myself finally, but my petite nurse friend opted to get a kids size instead. It ended up slightly small for her and a bit revealing. We were teasing her that she looked like a character from an ecchi anime.
The onsen was so relaxing; I think we stayed too long to the point of feeling a little dizzy. But afterwards, we went to the massage pods in a different floor and continued our relaxation there. Their signature massage in my opinion was a bit too light. It has the soothing strokes in Swedish but ended with light touches that made me feel a bit bitin. I am not sure if it was really supposed to be like that. So if you’re used to the typical Shiatsu or Swedish, I suggest you just go for those.
After the massage, we were again led to another floor for the tea lounge. As I was still feeling a bit hot (thankfully, the massage pods were not freezing cold unlike other spas), I took the cold tea. Yummy! There’s a calming sensation looking out to the busy streets of Makati through the all-glass wall of the tea lounge while sitting comfortably in La-Z-Boys.
At this point, we already spent almost four hours at the place. And our conversations hasn’t slowed down yet. We continued to the cafe at another floor again and filled our stomachs with fresh and warm food. They were just setting up the place for dinner so we got first dibs on most of what they offer. On the first round, I had pumpkin soup with ginger, vegetable lasagna, some fish, pasta, hainanese chicken, and grilled pork. Next we got desserts. Then got some tempura, lechon belly, and roast beef! My friends also got sushi. And back to desserts again.
The Hotel Pool
This is no longer part of the spa package but since the pool was in the same floor as the onsen, we also took a peak of this eye-catching place on our way back. They were courteous enough to let us have a look around.
You can actually walk through that elevated area with the “caged” couches. And from there, we saw that the pool actually had a transparent floor where you can see the hotel driveway downstairs! OR where they can see your butt upstairs. Hahahaha.
What can I say further? Imagine going for massage at The Spa then having buffet at Buffet 101. Really worth it when you set it at that comparison. And taking advantage of their introductory price is a smart move. You get to experience it first and new and at a probably cheaper price before they formally launch it.
We had a great time! And my nurse friend really appreciated that we chose this activity. It helped unwind her for the next months to come as she prepares herself for the next step in her career.
So go ahead and take this chance! Their promo is only until this March. If you’re celebrating something this month, might as well check I’m Onsen Spa!