My 1st (and probably last) Hammam Experience

So I had just dropped our kids off at the Mini Club at our Turkish resort and I am on my way to meet my husband. He ends up meeting me halfway, and the first words out of his mouth are “so while Nathan and I are ATV’ing, I booked an appointment for a massage for you” (our twins are too young for the ATV adventure). “What?!” was my only response. “So on Thursday you drop the twins off at the Mini Club and head right over to the spa”. I literally asked him “well you didn’t pay yet did you?” – thinking, if he didn’t pay, I probably wouldn’t have to show up; it wouldn’t look good, but I wouldn’t be out any money. “I did, so you have to go” – let’s just say he knows me well… So here I am, three days away, and already nervous about this massage. He tells me it’s a 90 minute session, and includes a skin rejuvenation type of scrub. Sounds easy enough.


Three days go by, and it’s now the morning of my massage. Who am I to know what is going to happen (this is a massage right?!), so I shower, put makeup on, (so I wouldn’t have to go back to my room afterwards to “get ready”), and head out the door. Twins at the Mini Club, I head over to be pampered!!

As I walk in, I get a small cloth folded up, and told it is for me. Okay. I head into the massage room with the lady whom I am assuming is going to give me the massage. I assumed I would have to take my shirt off, but she asks me to strip right down. This is different (I have never ever had a massage before, so its not like I really know what is normal or not..). She tells me to use the small linen to cover myself, as we walk to another room. This room is HOT. It’s probably at least thirty five degrees. It has two marble tables, one on each side of the room. She places a towel as a pillow on one of them, and takes the linen covering me, lays it down as a sheet, and tells me to lie down. The table itself was also very hot. It felt nice (the heat..) on my back. As if I am comfortable enough lying on this table naked, she tells me to stay there, and leaves the room.

I get some time to actually look around the room, and beside each marble table is a faucet and sink (kind of like ones you find in your garage, but much fancier!) and a couple of buckets. But they didn’t seem like just any faucet and bucket, they looked like a chrome type with designs all over the sides. They were very beautiful.

At least five minutes later, the lady comes back in wearing a type of linen I am lying on – which is weird considering she was fully dressed before. Now I am getting confused. I hear the water running, and all of a sudden she is pouring hot water all over me. For someone who has lukewarm showers, this was not an easy thing. She rubs this black coffee smelling type of rub all over, and then (my eyes are closed so I can’t see anything, it’s all by feeling), uses this extremely hard glove to scrub it all in. To say it was an uncomfortable feeling, was an understatement. This glove thing stung. It HURT… But from my understanding, it is taking away all the dead skin cells, so it needs to be rough. Finally, from neck all the way down to toes she is done. Then I hear “flip over” and she starts again on my back. Arggg.

Finally done, thinking I can get going, I feel like feather-like softness on my back. Now what?!?! Turns out it was soap. Without realizing it, she is literally now washing my entire body. It was being bathed by a complete stranger. Body, face, hair, everything. If I had known this, I would not have put makeup on in the morning… Thank god it was waterproof, but imagine it wasn’t?! I would be looking like a racoon at this point.

FINALLY she is completely done this part. She wraps me in a towel, and sends me out to a “quiet room” to relax. It has dimly lit lights, candles everywhere, soft music, and a TV showing a video of an aquarium. It was definitely a relaxing room.


The lady walks by me, completely ignoring me, so I stay sitting, wondering if I should follow her or not. I take the latter, and she eventually comes to get me – no longer wearing a linen, but fully clothed. At least this made me know the water part was over…

I went back into the original room,  and once I laid down, it was actual massage time. This was a full body massage, literally starting at your toes, all the way up to your shoulders  front and back. This is more along the lines of what I was originally expecting.  After about forty-five minutes, she was completely done – and I was so relaxed I could pretty much fall asleep. She left the room for “time to just relax” – shut the light off, and let me just lay there. How often do I just get to lie down and not hear screaming kids in the background? Never! This was amazing!

Finally time is up, and it’s time to leave. Am I happy to be leaving? I’m not 100% sure. Would I do it again? The massage part yes, the scrub part, probably not as much.

Finished the quiet off with a glass (or maybe two..) of wine in the hotel lobby alone, for my last twenty minutes of quiet! I actually took the time to Google the whole experience, and found out the real name is called a Hammam. It goes all the way back to the Roman Empire – of which a public bath was a normal, and popular thing to do. They are very popular (on smaller terms, not so public) today in Turkey and Morocco. Some even have a cold bath (or pool) so after the hot, you get the opposite of cold to stimulate your blood flow. And, most have a separate area for males and females, and the masseur cannot be of the opposite sex.

Am I happy I did it? YES!! I am 1000% grateful for my husband for getting this for me. I love the fact that he gave me this ninety minutes to myself, with nothing to worry about – on something I would NEVER ever pay for myself. I love him so much! ❤

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