milk + honey = One Sweet Spa
Coming to Austin every year, I notice gradual changes occurring in the downtown area. New shopping areas have been popping up, particularly around 2nd street. The other day, I went with my girlfriend to see the new stores. A few design stores carried some nice decor, but what really caught our attention was milk + honey. I had remembered reading about the place in one of the Austin magazines (I think it was 512), and decided to go inside.
The interior of the spa looked very nice, with a modern, yet earthy feel. The color scheme of the decor was appealing, but not too overpowering. Overall, it looked like very much like other spas I had seen.
However, what caught my attention was the spectacular service. My girlfriend was in the mood to get a pedicure, so we inquired about availability. With it being SXSW as well as the weekend, the man behind the counter informed us that there were no vacancies for that day or the next. We left, disappointed.
As we walk to our car, the guy comes out of the spa, quickly walking towards us. He lets us know that he hadn’t read the appointment book correctly, and that if we wanted to do the pedicure now, there was some availability. I left my girlfriend there, and went back to my hotel.
While I was gone, I thought about trying out the spa as well. School has been stressful the past few months, and I needed some sort of relaxation. I wasn’t looking for just a massage, but something different. After a quick perusal of their services brochure, I noticed there was a “Services for Men” section. From the choices, the Sea Salt Scrub was the most appealing.
With that in mind, I returned to the spa 45 minutes later to pick up my girlfriend. At the same time, I booked my Sea Salt Scrub for Monday. We paid, and then left.
I came back alone on Monday, and after entering the spa was escorted to the men’s locker room. I changed into a robe and slippers, and sat in the waiting room area. The waiting room had a variety of reading material, as well as refreshments. The furniture, while very modern, was comfortable.
I was then taken to a room and the treatment began. A sea salt scrub is essentially an exfoliation method that uses “sea salts” as an abrasive material to scrub away dead skin. The result is healthier, glowing skin. Although the feeling of the salt scrub was a bit displeasing at first, it started to feel really good after a few minutes. I would say that it was relaxing and invigorating at the same time.
The scrub (and wash afterwards) lasted for about 30-35 minutes. After it was over, I moved to another table and was given a 25 minute full body massage. It too was, as expected, very relaxing. However, by that time I was already convinced the treatment was worth the money.
What struck me most about milk + honey was this: usually, when you go to a spa in downtown or some high traffic area, the service is bad or its really expensive. I was surprised to see this wasn’t the case here. Throughout the entire treatment, I was regularly asked if everything was okay and if I needed anything. After the massage was over, I was left alone to relax for a few minutes. I didn’t feel rushed at all. Once I opened the door, the lady who gave me the treatment was waiting for me with a glass of water. It had a very friendly feel to it, and I was very comfortable. I think the comfortableness (is that a word?) of a spa is really important, and something you don’t necessarily get every where.
In all honesty, I can’t think of anything that could have made my experience at milk+honey better. I would have to wholeheartedly recommend this spa to anyone that is coming into Austin from out of town and staying in the downtown area. Business people that regularly visit Austin for meetings or work will find milk+honey to be a gem that’s a close walk away from their hotel. I’m sure there are other great spas out there, and if anyone knows of some place post them in the comments.
At least for me, I know that I’ll be using milk+honey’s services again when I come back next year for SXSW. That is unless they open up a Houston location..