Travel

By Irene Fogarty

mo-sa-à¯c n.

1. a picture or design made with small pieces of colored material such as glass or tile stuck onto a surface. 2. the art of making mosaics. 3. something consisting of a number of things of different types, forms, or colors. 4. the coolest spa ever in Paris that some lucky BeautyNewsNYC writer got to review.

Mon Dieu!
It’s not every day in this job, or many jobs for that matter, that you’re asked to review a spa. Especially a new one that just happens to be in Paris. Quel surprise! So when it happened to me, I was more than excited – especially knowing the amount of brie and Bordeaux I would be consuming in the days to follow.

It was all set up. I was to meet Amelie, the PR girl for the Hilton Hotel, in the serene garden of the new Hilton at 2 o’clock for a “light” lunch before being whisked away to some soft, leather bed where a harem of aroma-therapeutic professionals could do their magic on me, my face that is.

After our delicious lunch and a delightful conversation about the difference in cultures, I was led to Spa Mosaà¯c.

How does one describe Spa Mosaà?
To call the newly opened Mosaic a mere spa is like calling Manolo’s footwear. It’s an exotic energizing haven for mind and body; an afternoon office escape; a “Sorry, I won’t be in all afternoon” message followed by “I will not be checking email or voice mail” auto-response reply; a “what day is it again?” feeling; a “who is J Lo?” happy loss of memory, moment. Get the picture? Well if you don’t take a look at the ones I took. They speak for themselves.

A spa with a concept!
So where do you start to describe a place, a feeling, an aroma, a paradise like this? OK. Let’s start with the pearly gates, the door I mean. As I was led to the spa there was a dark door with a porthole that had a simple but brilliantly designed logo-esque pattern on it: Mosaà¯c, with blocks of different colors that would reflect the pattern of the tile on the walls, which embodies the entire meaning of the place.

Maybe I’ve been doing advertising too long, but I take my hat (or beret) off to beauty companies/spas who actually think of names of products with a concept. Mosaà¯c does this beautifully. If there’s an agency behind this brand, then that explains it all. But regardless, the name itself and its plethora of meanings are all explained, literally, from their walls to their menu of treatments.

Once past the doors, I was led to a Turkish-inspired world where two things come to mind, clarity and simplicity. The design is lavish but not in a gaudy Trump-like way. It’s an indiscreet, subtle yet powerful ambience that draws you in. You immediately want to breathe in the vapors, inhale the eucalyptic aromas and forget about everything but the fact that you’re going to be pampered by professionals who’s only concern is hydrating your skin and making you feel like a goddess for the next 90 minutes.

J’adore Decléor!
Spa Mosaà¯c offers two skincare options: Decléor and Carita. Both are equally effective. The history of Decléor is more plant-based, while Carita is more innovative – probably more suited to older, more mature skin. For me Decléor is a great brand of all-natural, aromatic, soothing skincare products that seem to always refresh, alleviate and give my complexion a better tone. Here’s why. Decléor AROMESSENCE concentrates are 100% pure, 100% natural, 100% active and preservative-free. Known for their use of natural extracts and aromatherapy oils in their aroma-care range, Decléor products are simple and practical with light scents that have you thinking of nature, with a clean and fresh finish.

Most impressive of all, Decléor isn’t just a brand, cosmetic company or a cream. It’s a whole way of thinking. It’s a holistic approach to beauty, perfectly demonstrated in the exclusive beauty treatments available at spas like this one. Decléor has created a philosophy, a mission and a menu of massage delights that are tailored treatments to your individual needs. Thankfully, Spa Mosaà¯c is just one of the havens that offers them.

What’s on today’s menu?
So what needs fixing? Blotchy skin, dry skin, aching muscles, in bad need of a detox? Whatever you want, there’s something in here to help you look and feel better. Take a look at their treatments and see which one you’d like. (No need for translation here: it’s franglais…Renovator, Hydration, Harmony, Firming, Pure, Soft, Extreme…yep you’re fluent!)

AROMAPLASTIE…60 mins
RENOVATEUR PURETE ECLAT…60 mins
RENOVATEUR HYDRATATION INTENSE…90 mins
REGULATEUR…90 mins
NUTRI-SOIN…90 mins
HARMONIE DOUCEUR EXTREME…90 mins
EVIDENCE…90 mins
RENOVATEUR LIFT FERMETE… 90 mins
PRO-LIFTING…60 mins
VITAL YEUX….+20 mins
RENOVATEUR DOUCEUR EXTREME…90 mins

And the specials?
SOIN-MASSAGE “Sensations Mosaà¯c”…105 mins.
This is the Eiffel Tower of all massage treatments. It involves a ménage-a-deux, that’s 2 Decléor professionals, 4 hands, that take turn to pamper you with an experience of various massage movements (Thai, Balinese, and Swedish), hot aromatic oils that seep into your skin, and the best of Decléor or Carita skin treatments. Then to finish, a brilliantly choreographed finale with hot and cold stones placed on your feet and face as a ying-yang balance from head to toe leaves you feeling you’re walking on air.

If you can find anything near a price like this (less than $250) in New York, I’ll gladly review it!

Calme-Toi!
I’ve been to the Zen-like spas, with the running water noises, the spiritual sounds and the “Om” echoing in every room – but this was different. My “cabin,” what their brochure so aptly calls a “haven of peace, harmony and relaxation,” had a Japanese simplicity to it, with a princess and the pea-like bed placed at a feng-shui angle, soft low lights and a sleek looking sound system that teased me into a dream-like state. I immediately shed my clothes, threw on the comfy bathrobe and hopped under this amazingly light yet all-engulfing, swaddling quilt – probably made of foie-gras feathers! It brought back memories of when my mother would tuck me in as a child and hypnotically tell me I was “jaded.” Now all I had to do was wait for a fairy godmother to come in and place her golden hands on my face. It was only 3 in the afternoon but I never looked forward to jumping into bed as much as I did that day.

My treatment: “RENOVATEOR LIFT FERMETE” 1 hr. 45 mins.
The whole procedure took place like the elves in some fairytale, who silently appear, do their magic and leave. And I was too lost in my world, to open my eyes and get a glance of them. All I knew was that some force in the room was slowly relaxing me, my face, my shoulders, my hands, my feet. Words like tension, stress, anxiety all disappeared from my vocabulary.

After minutes of relaxation, I felt my skin texture was carefully refined and clarified with Renovateur. My therapist placed her hands along the décolletage and began a long ascending sculpting massage that relaxes your features and erases signs of fatigue.

I could almost feel the toxins being emitted from my weary bones as I felt a warm rejuvenating sensation with each stroke.

Specially designed micro masks (like cotton clouds drenched in some soothing elixir) were applied to my eye contours and lips to smooth fine lines and brighten skin. While you wait, your therapist will complete the treatment with a hand and foot massage that is pure delight. As she pulled on each digit, weeks of over-indulgence were exiting from the tip of each filange. And while that’s going on, your complexion is given the most amazing lifted effect – not to mention your spirits.

What I remembered best though, was the aromas of the oils. I loved the refreshing Decléor essential oils that they slathered so generously over my face. The oils released relaxing and soothing aromas, while simple rocking movements along my body’s energy meridians gave me deep relaxation. I was being enveloped in a deep sensation of serenity – when was the last time I felt that?

As the dream-like massage came to an end, I was basking in the delight that I had in fact made it to heaven. It was only until the therapist sweetly whispered that I could stay as long as I wanted, that I realized I was somewhere else – heaven on earth.

Mosaà Amenities
On top of all the treatments, you can get all the regular spa beauty therapies and treatments from manicures to pedicures, waxing etc. I had to check the place out…and I came across more than I ever imagined. They have, excuse the pun, left no stone unturned.

- Sauna
- Steam room
- Hydrotonic shower with massaging jets
- Fitness room
- 10 cabins for face and body treatments, massage
- Dry floating bed

Decléor Delirium
Perhaps the best way I can summarize my whole Mosaà¯c experience is to describe how I felt leaving. I was in such a cerebral state of mind, I couldn’t quite come back to reality. As I tried to utter a thank you to the Decléor divas in French, I was too incoherent to get English out, no mind attempting a simple “Adieu et Merci.” The gratitude was written all over my face.

an image

Indulgence you can’t feel guilty about
So next time you’re strolling down the Champs Elysée, why not treat yourself to a little indulgence other than cheese and wine? Drop into the Spa Mosaà¯c in the Paris Hilton – you’ll not only feel better about the way your skin looks, you’ll also leave with a rejuvenating lift on life too. Now where else can give you that for less than $200?

Spa Mosaà
Hilton Arc de Triomphe Paris

51-57 rue de Courcelles
Paris 75008 France
Tel: +33 1 58 36 68 09

Spa Manager: Karen Galo
http://www.spamosaic.com

Opening Hours:
Mon-Sat: 9:00 a.m. – 8:00 pm

Originally published November 2004
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