Harris Waterfront Resort Batam – ESKA Wellness Spa and Salon
Day 2 saw us taking the hotel shuttle bus to Nagoya town. It was at least a 30 minutes ride and as our group was big, we took up the whole bus. The hotel only has 2 timings for the shuttle service, one in the morning and another in the afternoon.
Raymond obviously missed being a tour guide and had to take the opportunity to play one before the bus driver came and reclaimed control of the bus.
We were early for our scheduled spa and massage session at ESKA Wellness Spa but Lina thought it would be good for us to go and confirm with the receptionist our appointment. I went with her and we checked with the receptionist. Our bookings were confirmed and we told the lady we would come back after we had our lunch. There were many walk-in customers and the spa was obviously raking in big money.
After a bit of shopping at Nagoya Hill Mall and a quick lunch at A&W (this fastfood chain is everywhere on the island), we crossed over the road to ESKA. There, we picked the package we wanted and as we were waiting, there was another group going through the menu. After about 10-15 minutes, we were led to our respective rooms.
Hubby and I, Mel and cousin, Nic and girlfriend, Irene and hubby Steven were taken to the top level which happened to be the rooftop covered with skylight. There are 4 couple rooms up there and each room has a jacuzzi tub.
The masseuses took their time getting ready the tub so I took the opportunity to snap a few pictures. I was impressed with the setting because it seemed unique and quite an experience to have a spa and massage at the rooftop. However, that fascination soon turned into something short of a nightmare.
Complaint one: Imagine both of us lying almost naked under the skylight with just a piece of sarong preserving our dignity. If there was a plane flying overhead, the people up there could clearly see us through the skylight. However, what we didn’t know wouldn’t hurt us so that wasn’t so bad.
Complaint 2: It started drizzling while we were just getting started on the massage and the awning had to be lowered to prevent the rain from beating down at us. All throughout the massage we could hear the prayer blaring from loudspeakers placed all over the island and since we were at the rooftop, it was louder for us. But that wasn’t the bad part. It was the sun beating down on us through the skylight after the rain that had hubby almost giving up the massage halfway through.
We were like 2 pigs being laid on the table to roast under the hot sun. I almost drifted off to dreamland despite the heat (or maybe I was drifting away to oblivion due to the heat) when hubby called out my name and startled me. He complained about the heat as he sat up on the bed. He was almost raging mad being left up there under direct sunlight without even a fan to cool us down. Thankfully the masseuses came and soon we were able to dip into the jacuzzi tub.
Complaint 3: the masseur attending to me was very inexperienced. She seemed to take the cue from her partner who was attending to hubby. At one stage, she was supposed to cover my eyes when I flip onto my back for the front massage. Instead of folding the face towel and gently covering my eyes, she threw the cloth over my face LOL Then I heard her partner talking to her, probably showing her how to do it correctly, and only then did she remove the cloth, folded it before covering my eyes properly.
Usually I enjoy having a temple and head massage but not this time. This masseuse seemed intent on killing me at the onset of the massage, applying so much strength on such a delicate part of the head such as the temple and the areas behind the ears.
We weren’t the only ones with complaints though. Alvin were made to wait 40 minutes for his back and shoulder massage. He was so angry that he left the place in search of another massage parlour but couldn’t find one with an available slot for him, so he returned and demanded to just have foot reflexology. They got him a guy who was earlier seen working in the salon. As if it wasn’t bad enough that the guy wasn’t a professional masseur, he even tried to short-changed Alvin by 15 minutes.
It seemed like the majority, if not all of us, were short-changed by 15-25 minutes, being made to wait in our rooms while the masseuses were making preparations. When we complained to the lady boss, she beat a hasty retreat and told us to just tell the receptionist. As if that would do us any good! They were only interested in making money, taking in customers even when they were fully booked, and couldn’t care less about their image. No more ESKA Wellness and Spa for us. This has to be the worst massage experience for us.
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