Let’s not kid ourselves. Living in Bangkok with its constantly cool happenings and vivid social scenes can be exhausting. The city has plenty to offer and much to love thereby, yet there are times even the conscientious city dweller will admit they’re one Sun Salutation away from losing the plot. Yet they don’t. And do you know why? They’ve cracked both code and muscles and gotten hold of these secret two words: spa resorts.

Spa resorts in Southeast Asia are no recent discovery. We flourish in wellness on this side of the globe, between traditional Thai massages and ancient Ayurvedic practices. It’s something the region is particularly good at (besides foodculture, and shopping, though we digress), and it’s something that makes up a big part of our lives. After-work massages are a thing in Bangkok. Oil treatments and yoga are the norm in Mumbai. And you can’t really say you’ve been to Bali if you didn’t come back at least internally more beautiful.

Regardless, it can be difficult and sigh-fully time-consuming to know and plan just where to head, or even where to start. Therefore, we’ve taken it off your busied list and put together a host of spa resorts in Southeast Asia for you to check out every month. From mountain to beach retreats and secret hideaways, unwind with a capital ‘U’ and practise the art of relaxation at these haunts. Inhale the wellness. Exhale the worries. And then definitely thank us later.

Featured image credit: Anantara Peace Haven Tangelle Resort; Hero image credit: Revivo Wellness Resort

1
Refresh Retreat, Song Saa Private Island, Cambodia

There is no privacy like the privacy of your own overwater villa on a quiet, private island; you can’t fight us on this. And if an ethical and luxurious private island resort sounds right up your leafy street, head to the pioneers in the region for this kind of sanctuary, and check in to Song Saa Private Island this May. Located near the coast of Cambodia’s Sihanoukville, the intimate haven is offering an ongoing Refresh Retreat this year, inspired by the Song Saa signature ‘stillness’ treatments. The focus of the retreat is on mental clarity and stress-release and includes spa treatments in nurturing environments. After consultation with the sanctuary manager, you’ll get to indulge in a classic karuna kaya massage, manipura massage, personal yoga/meditation sessions, a rainforest facial, stillness bath ritual, and nightly turndown bath ritual. Daily spa treats will be provided from the kitchen too, and those opting to add on two more nights to the typically five-night programme will also get a night spa ritual and eye treatment as part of the course. City chaos and urban stresses? Never heard of ’em.

The Refresh Retreat is available throughout the year.

Song Saa, Koh Rong Archipelago, Sihanoukville, +855 92 609 488

2
Cleanse & Detox Circuit, Revivo Bali, Indonesia

Where massages and meditation are often in the spotlight when we talk about wellness, more and more spa resorts are turning their attention to healthy nutrition and detoxification, too. Following their grand opening last year, Bali’s Revivo Wellness Resort is bringing together all kinds of wonderful wholesomeness along this tangent, combining spa, fitness, and dining programmes. Whilst there are retreats available year-round, guests visiting Revivo in May can take part in a special Cleanse & Detox Circuit, leaning about healthy ways to cleanse and detox the body. Designed to boost energy, eliminate toxins, and restore vital organs, engage in aqua and aerial yoga, enjoy a Nutrio lunch, and relax in the hydro pools. Set amidst the breezy hills of Southern Bali’s Nusa Dua, the retreat sits inside a dense tropical rainforest, for a detox experience of the most deeply informative kind.

The Cleanse & Detox Circuit program is available until 31 May, and takes place every day from 10am to 6pm.

Revivo Wellness Resort, Jl. Des Sewangan, Kelurahan Benoa, Kec. Kuta Selatan, Badung, Bali, +62 361 3011011

3
Meaning of Life Retreat, Amankora, Bhutan

Nestled inside the majesty of the Himalayan mountain landscape, many visit the Kingdom of Bhutan to immerse themselves in the natural beauty and cultural charm of the small country located between India and China. Inviting participants to feel this magic and gain deep insight into themselves, Amankora is hosting a ‘Meaning of Life’ retreat exclusively this May, taking place across four of the luxury wellness resort’s lodges at Thimphu, Gangtey, Punakha, and Paro. The retreat includes two nights at each lodge, and encompasses everything from morning meditation and prayer sessions to temple visits, lectures, and one-on-one life awareness coaching. Surrounded by a tranquil nature and a residing age-old wisdom, it’s a wellness retreat of the most humbling and inspiring kind. Furthermore, guests can also indulge in Himalayan forest bathing, prayer flag bathing, and Himalayan forest therapy, for a wholly Bhutanese wellness experience.

The ‘Meaning of Life’ retreat runs from 5-13 May. Himalayan forest bathing, prayer flag bathing, and Himalayan forest therapy are available throughout the year.

Amankora, Paro, Thimphu, Punakha, Gangtey, Bumthang, Bhutan, +975 2 331 333

4
Chakra Crystal Balancing, Anantara Peace Haven Tangalle Resort, Sri Lanka

Where some choose to detox from within the body by eating (or avoiding) certain foods, others choose to detox from outside the body. Ideal for those who are more chakra than charcoal smoothie, engage in a chakra crystal balancing massage at the Anantara Peace Haven in Sri Lanka this month. With a name as dreamy as its location is romantic, the resort lies towards the southern tip of the South Asian island, overlooking the Indian Ocean. Here you’ll receive this signature massage, which involves selecting crystals that best resonate with your inner values, and placing them at different points on the body. The holistic therapy also uses singing bowls to further realign body and mind, and brings together a long-practised Ayurvedic treatment and ancient healing ritual. Unwind within your private luxury pool villa post-massage and pre-cliffside-dinner, and revel in the magic of this coconut-palm-fringed sanctuary.

The Chakra Crystal Balancing Treatment is available throughout the year.

Anantara Peace Haven Tangalle Resort, Goyambokka Estate, Tangalle, Sri Lanka, +94 47 767 0700

Lisa Gries
Managing Editor, Bangkok
Lisa loves to travel, and is always on the lookout for the world’s best nap spots. She’s a serious Asian art history nerd, and has a knack for languages and coffee table books. She hopes to publish her own novels one day, one of which will likely be called ‘All The Great Conversations I Had In A Bangkok Speakeasy.’ It’s a work in progress.