FIRM MASSAGE: BALIMA DAY SPA
by Sarah Scaddan
I am a lover of a firm massage and when I say firm, I mean a ‘face contorted in pain and the only words in my head are expletives’ type of firm. If a masseuse gives me gentle rub me all over with sickly smelling oil and I never once have to hold in a scream, that is not a massage to me. That is a rub. And I resent paying Swiss prices for a rub.
Since moving to Geneva it has been a mission of mine to find a spa that provides a firm therapeutic massage in a nice environment. I want the serenity of a South East Asian spa, the customer sevice of, err, anywhere but Switzerland, and of course, firm hands. After much trial and error, I discovered Balima Day Spa in Rive and I have never looked back.
Balima was founded by Rhoshinta Larasati and Javed Dar, who shared the frustration of what Geneva had to offer in Geneva in terms of value, price and variety. Rhoshinta grew up in Bali where beauty therapy has been an everyday ritual for women for generations, long before luxury spas existed. Rhoshinta has a background in retail and Javed in sports therapy and wellness. They opened the spa in April 2016 and the name Balima is a mixture of Bali, and Lima which is the number 5 in Bahasa referring to the five elements of nature in eastern philosophy.
WHAT’S TO LOVE ABOUT THE PLACE
- The space – the decor is tasteful and appropriately Indonesian, with beautiful bespoke wooden furniture and orchids galore. If you can’t go to Bali, this is the next best thing.
- The welcome – Javed & Rhoshinta take the time to look at your client profile before you arrive, so you are greeted like an old friend. Both speak immaculate English.
- The personal touch – before your treatment you have time to sample all the oils available so you can choose the one for your mood that day.
- The variety – alongside classic western spa favourites, Balima offers a selection of Balinese rituals which combine traditional techniques with innovative Indonesian healing. There are also house specials including Pijat Urat, a 90 minute treatment combining diagnostic reflexology, body mapping & manual therapy to unearth positive energy flow. A four hands massage is also being introduced to the salon soon.
- The therapists – whoever I have had the pleasure to be treated by has been professional, knowledgeable & has had super human strength.
- The cost – prices start at 135chf for a one hour massage. Worth every franc.
- The service – hot or cold drinks are offered pre and post treatment. You can relax there as long as you like afterwards, to psyche yourself up for re-entry into the real world.
- The ease – there are spa’s in Geneva where it is a full-time job trying to make the appointment. At Balima, calls, online booking or emails are answered immediately and English is no problem. It is open 10am-8pm most days of the week.
So what are you waiting for?
NOTE: Balima offer a range of massages with differing levels of pressure – so if you prefer a less firm massage, they are of course on offer too!
For further information: Balima Day Spa, rue du Vieux-Collège 12, 1204 Genève.
by Sarah Scaddan, travel planner at www.inspiremytravel.com.