From the moment I arrived in the quaint town of Oia on the Greek island of Santorini, I knew I was in for something special. Our hotel, 1864 The Sea Captain’s House, was just the right place for all of the requisite relaxation a honeymoon should include-but then I found out they have a spa called Caldera Massages, and I was in sheer heaven.
I was given a tour of the two treatment rooms, which are kitted out in traditional Greek island style from the furnishings to the smooth white walls and stone floors. The massage room is accented with bookcases lined with bottles of oil and apothecary jars filled with a variety of herbs on the floor. The second room has a sunken mosaic tile bathtub for hydrotherapy treatments, and enough room to accommodate massages for two. I was on my own for my Swedish massage (they offer seven different kinds and a slew of other body and facial treatments) with Antonio, and although I’m fortunate to have experienced some of the best spas in the States, this was my first pampering treatment abroad and my expectations for massage are forever changed.
When I stepped into the room, Antonio offered me a choice of seven different aromatherapy oils and explained that I would be exposed while my back was massaged. (I declined the disposable undies since I’m not the least bit bashful). For the front, I would be covered with a sarong, and only the areas he would be working on would be exposed.
My biggest pet peeve when it comes to massage (after a chatty therapist) is squeaky sneakers, and all I can say is that I never even knew where Antonio was standing-he glided around the table undetected without missing a stroke. I couldn’t believe that the only time he paused during the 75-minute treatment was when I flipped over.
Starting with my legs, he worked his way up to my back (derriere included) and neck and back down the other leg. Any trace of soreness from my swimming in the hot springs the day before melted away. Then he moved to my front for a gentle stomach massage before focusing on my arms. The time he spent on my head and face was sublime, and I found myself becoming sad that I knew my treatment was coming to an end. But I was in for another treat when he told me he was going to bring tea, juice and cookies to my private courtyard so I could sit and relax while taking in yet another picture-perfect sunset.
While my days in Santorini (too) quickly came to an end, I was excited to learn that Antonio has developed a line of face and body products with Tony, the owner of the hotel, so I can treat myself to a little bit of Santorini while I’m back home-and even if you can’t make it the Greek isles, you can experience a bit of their charm as well. (They won’t be ready until later this summer, but when they are, expect to hear about them here first!)
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