Novi Era Larasati, Spa Manager of Amoaras Relaxation Spa at the Holiday Villa hotel.

By Marione B Lineses

Before I let myself unravel the Indonesian beauty secret, I take a small sip from my cup of ginger tea. This piping hot liquid warms my system (and it’s beneficial for digestion too), a great start to the back to nature concept of Amoaras.
I am introduced to the treatment called Lulur scrub, a 17th century old Indonesian tradition that’s creating a buzz in the world of beauty and exfoliation. Lulur is Indonesian term for scrub, a beauty ritual of royals in the Central Java province of Indonesia where brides-to-be were treated to this beautification process for around 40 days before the wedding ceremony.
“In our country, this is our queen of the body treatment”, says Novi Era Larasati, Spa Manager of Amoaras Relaxation Spa at the Holiday Villa hotel. Novi is an Indonesian spa expert who has been in the industry for 13 years working in various Asian countries, before coming to Doha.
The scrub concoction consists of tamarind, turmeric and some Indonesian roots that are finely blended and mixed with water to form the granulated solution. “We import the ingredients from my country because the roots are only available there,” Novi adds.
The royal Javenese Lulur starts with a quick foot scrub in water strewn with rose petals. After the ritual, I am ushered to the room and prepped for a Javanese massage. Given some choices of oils to supposedly invoke various effects, I pick the orange scent. True enough, the deep tissue massage helps to ease tense muscles, loosens up knots and the blood blithely surges to my enervated system.
After an hour, the skin is slathered with organic Lulur scrub. Usually I eschew a scrub at spas, finding it rather awkward, but this particular procedure intrigues me. The cold granulated preparation on the skin feels cool and refreshing. The scrub is left to dry for five minutes before it is rubbed off and already my skin is feeling refreshed.
Then plain yoghurt is dabbed lightly for a few minutes, to help moisturise and polish the skin. The result is a softer, silkier feel. A nice cool shower, while others may prefer to lounge in a warm bath that has been tossed with aromatic flowers, wraps up the treatment.
Today the Javanese royalty’s beauty secret is not a mystery anymore as Lulur scrub exfoliants can be purchased in commercial packaging made in Indonesia. Amoaras Spa is one that offers the authentic royalty treatment, in such a way that from the actual scrub being used to the massage therapists themselves, all come from Indonesia.
After an hour and a half, I say goodbye to my dead skin cells, and head home to my husband and two little girls with a refreshed countenance. As a mother, I needed to reboot my energy and take care of overlooked areas once in a while and this manja (Indonesian term for pampering) serves perfectly well.

Related Story