Alibyo Boutique Spa: A Traditional Filipino Spa Experience
It’s past 5 PM when I arrived at Alibyo Boutique Spa, without knowing what spa service I should get but excited nonetheless to pamper myself anew. I have been preoccupied with career and charity work these past few weeks so finding a time for this out of my busy schedule is already a luxury for me.
So let’s get started, shall we?
Happy Hour Special
Right before entering the spa, you’ll find their ad prominently displayed outside, promoting their 20% happy hour discount special.
From what I’ve learned, the term “happy hour” is commonly used in bars and restaurants to market their alcoholic drinks at reduced prices on a certain period time during the day (usually later afternoon to early evening).
I think it’s rather weird to use it on a spa but if I get to save a few bucks for the same service, who am I to complain?
Alibyo means “Relief” in Bisaya
Here in Cebu City, it’s very rare to find spas that offer authentic Filipino spa and wellness services. Most only offer the typical Thai, Swedish and Japanese (shiatsu) but Filipino-style therapy like “hilot” is usually sidelined to folk healers in secluded part of the province.
But I’m glad that there are a few exceptions like Alibyo Boutique Spa who dared to rise above the crowded spa industry by promoting something uniquely Filipino. What’s interesting is that all their services are called in Visaya with an English equivalent, such as Hilot (oiled body massage), Pisil (dry body massage), Bang-gud (foot spa) and Lugod (body scrub), to name a few.
Foot Reflexology and More
Since I usually have a body massage, today I’m going for foot reflexology to bring relief to my hardworking feet. It’s only P250 and with 20% off, it will only cost me P200. Not bad, right?
Before we got started, my masseuse washed my feet in a huge brown bowl of lukewarm water and scrubbed them with coffee ground. Yes, you heard me, they used coffee on my feet. Amazing!
She then ushered me inside which felt more like being led to an old haunted Spanish mansion because it is eerily quite and dark inside with only a few patches of light to guide me. I was a little creeped out, to be honest.
I settled in one of their huge leather reclining chairs while my masseuse massaged each foot with oil and long firm strokes to loosen up the toes down to the heel. She would alternately press the end of a wooden stick to stimulate the back of my feet and release tension particularly on the reflex points. As a bonus, she also did a short dry massage on my arms, neck and back which is more than I could ask for.
For those who are not familiar with foot reflexology, each reflex point on your feet corresponds to a specific area of the body. For example, the tips of the toes is massaged to stimulate the head and neck area–eyes, ears, nose and mouth. I’m not going to discuss in full details as to what organ is connected to which area of the foot but if you want to know more, click here.
Feeling Relieved here at Alibyo Boutique Spa
When I had a foot reflexology at Patria de Cebu last year, I remembered squirming in pain but thankfully, I had none of that experience here in Alibyo. In fact, today’s experience was not really out-of-this-world spectacular but it still managed to effectively bring comfort and relief for my feet, one of the often abused part of the body. I like the way my masseuse would ask me if the massage was okay or if it needs more pressure. I went home with a big smile on my face, ready to walk again with my brand-new feet.
For those who are interested to book an appointment with Alibyo Botique Spa, you may call them at (032)418-1810. They are located at the ground floor of RCDC Bldg., Gov. Cuenco Aven., Banilad, Cebu City near the Talamban Flyover and Banilad Town Center.
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