A Crystal Treatment
Cruise and spa guru Veronica Matheson takes a trip aboard Crystal Symphony as it sails along the coast of Alaska.
EVERYONE wants Hari, the Singaporean massage therapist on board Crystal Symphony whose magic fingers pamper guests as we sail along Alaska's celebrated Inside Passage.
Hari is not a clock watcher, his massages usually run well over time, and word has quickly spread around our cruise ship.
Interestingly, every time Hari signs a new contract with Crystal Cruises he insists on working in the same room that has no windows and only the softest of lighting. Most of the other massage rooms on board look out to the ocean.
"I love this room's energy and never tire of it, no matter how busy I am. Besides I don't need outside distractions when massaging guests."
Hari was a hotshot in IT, but made his sea-change several years ago after waking up one morning and deciding there was more to life than solving computer problems for a pharmaceutical company.
"I'd grown up among healers in Asia and felt very comfortable in such a caring environment. I took a massage course on Queensland's Gold Coast, and then headed back to Asia to learn more and incorporate the best therapies into my massages on Crystal Symphony."
Anyone who has had one of Hari's massages will recognize influences from Thai, Ayurvedic (Indian) and Shiatsu (Japanese for finger pressure) as well as from other cultures. "They are all ancient therapies that have survived the test of time," says Hari.
Hari is one of a number of caring massage therapists in Crystal Symphony's feng-shui(Chinese for balance) inspired large spa area which is infused with great energy, lots of light, and treatment rooms that mainly look out on the calming ocean. Not surprisingly all are kept busy as the on board spa has a reputation for delivering great service, especially on days at sea.
On this cruise through Alaska's breathtaking scenery many passengers opt for a spa treatment then relax in the on-deck Jacuzzi for a bird's eye view of snow capped peaks, and to watch glaciers "calving" huge chunks of ice that break off the main glacier to form individual icebergs.
The only problem is that those floating in the ship's jacuzzi have to leap out quickly when someone spies a whale breaching or a dolphin dancing in Crystal Symphony's wake.
Treatments: There are so many wellness treatments available in Crystal Symphony's large and busy spa that cruise goers could have a different massage every day of their cruise, in this case a 12-day round trip from San Francisco (US) to Vancouver and Vancouver Island (Canada), and on to Alaska's celebrated Inside Passage.
More: Crystal Cruises diverse range of ocean itineraries can be found at: www.wiltrans.com.au