Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Okeanos spa opens

Midtown saw the opening of Okeanos spa earlier this month. The spa is an updating of the traditional Russian banya experience, though more in the tradition of the Tsars than that of the average Russian (for that, check out the Russian and Turkish Baths, 268 East 10th St).

All visitors arrive a special Russian-style welcome, "a heated buckwheat wrap scented with rich, exotic Russian spices" placed on your shoulders. Afterwards, there is a wide array of treatments to choose from.

Key treatments involve the banya, the traditional Russian steam room. This is to be followed up by platza, the traditional where you are beaten with birch branches... though the website describes it as "the revitalizing experience of bundled birch leaves brushed against sauna-warmed skin." Platza treatments, according to the website start at $50.00, or $35.00 in combination with a massage.

Another interesting treatment is the Siberian Hot Stone (90 minutes, $210.00). "Powerful penetrating heat therapy heals the body with warm river stones placed along the back, hands and feet. Deep massage calms, soothes and restores."

Heidsick & Co. Monopole champagne - the personal favorite of Nicholas II - as well as ZYR Vodka and Petrossian caviar are also available.

See also From Russia with Banya.

Okeanos is located at 211 East 51st Street. For more information, call 212-223-6773.

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