Whether tis nobler in the mind to suffer slings and arrows of cruel breakout sessions or recline on a chaise with cucumbers over the eyes and chilled lemon water.  Ok, Shakespeare it’s not.  What IS pure poetry is the Spa at Mandalay Bay.

I’m not a gambler.  Blackjack, slot machines, roulette and poker hold no attractions for me.   I just don’t see the point.  If I’m going to plunk money down on a table, I want to receive something tangible in exchange – like top-of-the-line spa treatments.  I hit the jackpot at this place.

My colleague Stefanie and I used the time left open when a Las Vegas client canceled a meeting before our conference was slated to begin.  We had arranged our flights around this meeting, and we would be at loose ends for a few hours.   We could join in one of the pre-conference sessions, or we could duck into the spa.   It took us about 2 minutes to pull up the spa menu on the hotel website and book two hours of pure bliss.

After a light lunch at the Raffles Restaurant at the hotel, we sauntered down to the spa.  Clad in our robes and with spa sandals that fit, Stef and I gratefully sank into the hot pool.  Travel tension and stress melted away while we gazed at the carved pillars and golden ambiance.  The waterfalls that fuel each of the 4 pools (two hot, one warm and one cold) provided a melodious and relaxing sound.  Padded chaises were all around the pool, occupied by ladies in various stages of unconsciousness.  We resolved to be just as relaxed in the next couple of hours.

We were soon called for our treatments.   I had a coconut milk scrub first up on my dance card, followed by an aromatherapy massage and a Moroccan Oil scalp massage.   Stefanie had her massage and scalp treatment up first, followed by a cocoa butter hydration wrap that she hoped would help get rid of the dry skin and hair caused by the New Jersey winter.

The scrub and massage were superb.  I had a therapist named Sharon as my guide to relaxation, and she’s great.  If you’re reading this blog post and thinking of making a reservation on your upcoming trip, be sure to ask for Sharon.  She had a knack of  figuring out exactly what needed work during my treatment, and she didn’t break my meditation by talking too much.

The best part of the treatment was the 25 minute scalp massage and hair treatment with Moroccan Oil.  I have hair like that found on a buffalo, or perhaps Medusa, and I use that stuff every day – it’s the only thing that tames the snakes that spring from my head.  I hoped it would help with hydration and make my hair something approaching shiny.   What I ended up with was a brain that had ceased all cognitive function and hair that rivaled the Luxor Hotel for shine.  It was THAT good.

I practically crawled to the steam room after the treatment was over, and inhaled hot steam and drank cold lemon-water in about equal amounts.  When I emerged, the oil had been completely absorbed by my hair and skin and Stef said I looked 10 years younger.   An hour on the chaise with cold cucumbers on my eyes listening to the waterfalls completed the experience.   Soon we were ready to face the rigors of the next two days.

We both agreed it was one fantastic way to start the trip.  And yes, I DID look 10 years younger.  Amazing what stress relief does for a person – inside and out.

I need to do this more often.