Batam Spa Day

Yesterday, my friend and I were up at the ungodly hour of 5:30am, heading to Harbourfront ferry terminal to catch a boat across to Sekupang in Batam. Once we were safely across, the spa picked us up and we arrived at the Tempat Senang Spa retreat after ten minutes on the road.

We had booked the full day experience online which allowed us to have 6 hour long treatments, including 2 massages if we wished.  There are dozens of treatments to choose for so you can tailor your day to suit your needs. We drank lemongrass tea as we chose our ideal packages from the spa menu, then we were led to our own private spa room where we changed into sarongs and locked our belongings away.

There were no phones allowed in the retreat which gave everyone the opportunity to relax, switch off, and really get connected to the experience. Here’s the breakdown of my treatments in the order I received them:

1. Seaweed scrub
From the wide range of scrub treatments available, I chose the seaweed option for its detoxifying qualities. As I spend a lot of time outdoors hiking and swimming, I though the anti-ageing qualities wouldn’t hurt either. Starting with a soothing squeeze to warm up my muscles through my sarong, the therapist began applying the scrub one limb at a time. The scrub wasn’t too coarse and it was surprisingly relaxing. My friend opted for the coffee and rice scrub which smelled delicious but couldn’t stop her falling asleep.
Benefits The exfoliation and massage helped remove dead skin whilst improving my circulation.
Optional Once you flip over, you have the option to have your chest and stomach scrubbed too. The therapist will ask you first.
Result My skin was left feeling smooth and soft, and no redness appeared so it was a gentle procedure. If you have sensitive skin, you may wish to opt for the Lavender version.

2. Pedicure
Wrapped up in our kimonos and freshly showered, we headed outside into the warm morning for a pedicure. Sitting by a pool with the sound of running water and surrounded by tropical plants, it was easy to forget that we were so close to Singapore. I spend a lot of time on my feet and work barefoot, so having nice tootsies is important. After soaking our feet in bowls of warm water, we were treated to a good scrub and nail care before a colour was applied.
Benefits Gentle treatment and the comfy reclining chairs allow you to fall asleep.
Optional Their gel colours do not cost any extra compared to the usual polish. Using UV light lamps, the colour will set quickly and be smudge proof.
My soles and heels were soft and pink and my nails were immaculate. The fuscia pink is the perfect colour for a summery vibe.


3. Hair treatment
Crossing the garden to another outdoor hut, we sat in fully reclined chairs to have our hair washed. The chairs are raised so that there is no strain on your neck. Before the treatment began, we were given head and neck massages. I’ve had many whilst getting my haircut, but this was immense. I opted for the Geisha hair treatment to nourish my hair and moisturise the ends which have endured colouring, sun exposure and regular swimming. The treatment included a hairwash with delicious smelling shampoo, another long head massage, a conditioning mask and 15minutes with a hot towel wrap. The hair is rinsed with cool water but as we were in the tropics, it was comfortable. While the wrap is on, the therapist treats you to a bonus arm and hand massage.
Benefits The Geisha treatment, not featured on the website menu, nourishes hair and restores shine. My friend opted for the Cleopatra treatment which helps reduce hair fall and thickens hair.
Optional At the end of your treatment, you can have a blowdry if you wish. I opted to let my hair dry naturally as I wanted to retain the moisture and shine.
My hair felt glossy and soft and my flyaway hairs were smoothed down. My hair no longer felt like straw which was a relief. The smell of passionfruit is still permeating from my hair so I’m not washing it today.

We were taken to the restaurant for lunch, and sat on the balcony upstairs overlooking the garden and pools. We were given cold water and a complimentary lime juice on arrival. The full day spa experience includes lunch, which was a huge plate of Indonesian Nasi Campur delights, with vegetable spring rolls, prawn crackers, chicken satay, rice wrapped in banana leaves, kaffir lime chicken, acar pickle and calamari. Other drinks are optional, such as coffee or alcohol. They also serve deserts for the ultimate treat.

Nasi Campur lunch
Photo courtesy of the Tempat Senang website

4. Facial
Returning to our private spa room, I settled down for my 7-step treatment facial. I opted for the salicylic face peel to deeply cleanse my pores. I was warned in advance that the treatment could leave temporary redness, but that is a small price to pay for beautiful, clear skin. There is a machine that has various instruments for the treatment, including a diamond vacuum, a spritzer that sprays liquid all over your face and an icy wand that is swept over your face to reduce inflammation and redness. I was given 
Gentle treatment and the comfy reclining chairs allow you to fall asleep.
Optional If the extraction vacuum is set too high, tell your therapist. She uses long strokes and does not leave the sucker in one place. It didn’t hurt at all but did feel strange at first. You can buy the facemasks used in the treatment in their spa shop.
My skin did not feel sore or tight. The redness only appeared twenty minutes or so afterwards but lasted for about an hour before fading completely. It looked brighter and although my pores were not completely blackhead free, there was a noticeable improvement in the texture.

5. Swedish massage
Although this was technically my only massage treatment of the day, I had already enjoyed hours of full body therapy. I went for the relaxing Swedish massage, but having spoken to a regular at this spa, I would choose the Hawaiian Lomi Lomi next time. Using coconut oil, the therapist used long strokes with her palm, starting on my back, then my arms, then my legs before flipping me over.
Gentle treatment and the comfy reclining chairs allow you to fall asleep.
Optional Only the aromatherapy massage offers different oils. My friend chose this and had lemon for hers which I was able to enjoy in our shared room too!
This was the most relaxing massage I have ever had, and if you are a regular to my blog, you’ll know that I’ve sampled many massages in Asia. I managed to fall asleep and after the treatment, my muscles were relaxed and not tight.

6. Mud wrap
My final treatment was a mud wrap. Out of all the spa sessions, unfortunately this was my least favourite. The A/C was blasted above me and the room cooled to 20 degrees Celcius, presumably to dry the mud. It was lathered on but was really cold, and I giggled in discomfort as it was applied. Being sensitive to cold, I asked the therapist to cover me up. The sarong stuck to my body and towels were laid over me as I waited 15minutes for it to dry. As I turned over, I was not looking forward to having the front of my body slathered in the grey mud. At the end, my therapist gave me a head massage before I showered off. The water was not warm and the water pressure was weak, so I stood shivering as I furiously flicked pink mud all over the tiles.
Benefits The mud acts as a detoxifier and cleanses the skin. 
Optional If you’re sensitive to the cold too, I would go for the hot wrap or choose the hot herbal compress which my friend enjoyed.
My chest came up in a slight rash for about an hour after the treatment, showing that something had happened. This morning, I inspected my back and it seems that the treatment actually did wonders.

Following the final treatment, we changed and headed back to the welcome lounge. The spa shop is next door and sells the natural products used in the treatments, from aromatherapy oils, eye pillows, scrubs and even the patterned Indonesian kimonos. For the eco warriors out there, you can purchase locally made soaps and metal straws with cleaners to avoid plastic waste. It would have been good if the spa provided water in jugs in the room rather than the plastic pots with plastic straws.

We settled our bill, drank some more complimentary water and then were taken back to the ferry terminal for our return journey home. The staff were so friendly and welcoming and the lunch offered us the authentic flavours of Southeast Asian cuisine. The resort itself is full of tropical flowers and decorated in a traditional rustic way, with stepping stones over water, ornate carved oak doorways and wooden cabins for the treatments. I would highly recommend spending a day there, or even two if you want to try out their boutique bedrooms.

Information at a glance
How to get there We booked the 07:50 Batam Fast ferry from Harbourfront to Sekupang, returning on the 17:10 ferry. Remember, it is an international trip so bring along your passport / visa if required, and allow yourself enough time (1-2hours depending on whether it is peak timing) to get through immigration. You need to go through security so bear this in mind when you are packing. It cost S$49 per person once tax was applied. You can take advantage of the duty free shops too!
Immigration The spa warned us that visitors have been turned away for talking too loudly or using their phones in the line for immigration. The signs at the ferry terminal say the same. Be quiet, respectful and follow instructions for a smooth crossing.
Spa prices Visit the Tempat Senang website for the latest prices of their spa packages. We paid IDR 2,250,000 (S$212) per person including taxes and services as we went on a Monday, so were awarded a 20% discount. There are many special offers to take advantage of, such as an early bird booking, the Lotus spa day and their Sunday slash deal for a complimentary overnight stay.
What to wear Bring along your swimwear if you would like to have a dip in one of their pools. With 6 treatments, we did not have time but the spa does recommend you avoid metal accessories if you use the sauna or milk bath treatments. The spa provides you with slippers, kimono robes, sarongs, fabric underwear and towels so you do not need to bring anything. Try to remove jewellery in advance if it will get in the way of your treatment.
Lockers The spa provides each guest with a locker and key so your mind can remain at ease throughout the whole experience.

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