The best massage in Hanoi – Omamori Spa

The best massage in Hanoi and maybe the best massage I have ever had.

Omamori Spa

Ngõ 5 – Huỳnh Thúc Kháng, Láng Hạ, Đống Đa, Hà Nội, Vietnam
Open daily 8am – 8pm

I didn’t have any other massages in Hanoi to compare this one to but had a few in Ho Chi Minh City. I love a massage and was excited that the prices were so cheap in HCMC but as you travel north the prices increase. Even though there are so many things to do in Vietnam you have to at least have one massage. In HCMC city I was paying average of 100,000 Dong for a foot massage in Hanoi average prices were more like 400,000 Dong. Even still it’s a lot cheaper than in the UK but funds were getting low and I couldn’t justify having a massage when it wasn’t as cheap.

However, whilst reading my Vietnam lonely planet guide it mentioned a spa where the masseuses were blind and claimed to be a more sensual massage as it was done purely by touch. It was also cheaper than the city prices and I was intrigued by it. I checked the reviews on Trip Advisor and they all claimed to be amazing. We had some free time on our last day as we had done all the sightseeing and our flight wasn’t leaving until the night so we decided to get a taxi to this spa.

The Omamori Spa is out of the city centre we got a taxi it took around 25 minutes and cost 80,000 Dong so even with the added cost of the taxi the price was still cheaper than what the spas in the city were charging. It is down an alley at the side of this café, there is also a signpost and as we arrived someone said are you looking for the spa and then pointed it. If you are looking to have a massage in Vietnam you have to try this place out as it was an amazing spa in Hanoi.

This is a image of the entrance where you need to go down to get to the Omamori Spa. It looks like it will be a dead end but so worth going to get the best massage in hanoi

If you get to this café go down the alley to find the entrance to the Omamori Spa

I didn’t use the local buses but noticed this bus stop at the end of the alley.

This is a bus stop with information such as bus numbers to ask for to get to the Omamori spa in hanoi

Bus stop information to get to the Omamori spa

They were so welcoming when we arrived giving us some tea and asking us to sit whilst they explained the treatments on offer. There English is good but limited to what they are explaining as if you ask something not connected with the treatments they don’t really understand.

seating area at the omarori spa which is 4 cushions on the floor around a glass table decorated with trees and birds

Relaxing area before our massage in Hanoi

There were four types of massage on offer

Omamori
A unique Vietnamese massage focusing on deep tissue combined with acupressure. Especially helpful for chronic tense and contracted areas such as stiff neck, lower back tightness and sore shoulders

Swedish massage
Long kneading strokes and friction techniques on muscles

Hot stones
Melts away tension

Partial body
Focuses on the back helps ease pain, release endorphins, improves oxygen flow to muscle and promotes relaxation

Foot massage
Deeply relaxing and therapeutic for those suffering ankle injury. Foot, calf, and upper leg massage. Using the foot as a detailed reflexology body map it can treat pain and relieve tension and stress

I decided on the Foot massage for 140,000 Dong (approx. £5.05) for 45 minutes and my friend has the Omamori 290,000 Dong (approx. £10.25) and I am so glad as it was the best massage in Vietnam and I had a few.

After we had chosen which treatment we were going to have we were taken to the changing area. I was asked to remove all my clothes including my bra and put on a robe. I was only having a foot massage took me about 5 minutes to question why I needed to remove all clothes for a foot massage and she just kept saying yes so this is where the language barrier occurs. In the end, I just took off my leggings and said OK and she said yes lol. I had a tunic style top on which came to my thigh. We were given a locker to put our personal belonging in. As my friend was having a full body massage she removed her clothing and put on the robe.

There are two showers and a toilet but the lighting is very low in the changing area that I am not sure I could have had a shower safely. But as I was only having a foot massage this wasn’t required anyway.

We were then taken to the massage area which is an unusual set up. There are 4 beds in one room separated by curtains only. If you are having a full body massage and a little modest then this is not the right place as even though the lighting again is low the people having the massages do not have sight problems and may see more than you want them too.

the massage beds are not the most luxurious and they are in a row of 4 seperated only by curtains. But it still makes it onto my list of good massage places in vietnam

Massage beds at the Spa

My masseuse was a young guy. He had basic English and told me to lie on my back, normally when I have a foot massage it is sitting down but this was so comfortable I think it added to the whole experience. Due to the low lighting and the tranquil low music playing it was very relaxing and I could have fallen asleep.

It is rare to have an upper leg massage with a foot massage but it was amazing. It was just the right amount of pressure. The masseuse made sure my legs were in the correct position before adding pressure so my legs were not being pushed into positions that were unnatural which I have experienced before. It was one of the best massages I have ever had. If I had not been leaving for the airport in a few hours and wasn’t low on currency I would have had a much longer treatment as could have had this all-day long.

When I arrived, I had pains in my hips and was really struggling to walk after touring Vietnam for 14 days I was really feeling it. Afterwards I was nearly pain free. He used lots of different techniques the strangest was massaging the soles of my feet with his elbows again this was incredible as he kneaded all my tension away.

A picture of my feet whilst i am having the best massage in hanoi

Me having my foot massage in Hanoi

Diane’s experience of Omamori 90 minutes massage

My masseuse was called Phang who spoke enough English to tell me what she was about to do or wanted me to do. I started face down on the massage table, and before knew it she was up on the table in a squatting position above me. As soon as she started I knew it wasn’t going to be a relaxing massage!!!

Now I have a high pain threshold and like a strong firm massage, but with hands squeezing like vices and fingers of steel pressing acupuncture points there were times she took me to a place where it was almost intolerable …just to stop in time and stroke it out!!! I thought ‘what the hell have I let myself in for the day I have nearIy 24hr travelling home to do!!!’ It felt like I was having a session with a chiropractor has she pulled pushed and prodded!!! There was a point where I did have to stop her as I thought she was going to pull my left shoulder out of the socket again!!!

Well I know that I have made it sound like torture but it was 90 minutes of torturous pleasure and the best massage I have EVER had. I came out of the session with a warm tingly glow and I felt great. It’s a shame we only found the spa on our last day as I would definitely have gone back for another one…

My masseuse was called Phang who spoke enough English to tell me what she was about to do or wanted me to do. I started face down on the massage table, and before knew it she was up on the table in a squatting position above me. As soon as she started I knew it wasn’t going to be a relaxing massage!!!

Now I have a high pain threshold and like a strong firm massage, but with hands squeezing like vices and fingers of steel pressing acupuncture points there were times she took me to a place where it was almost intolerable …just to stop in time and stroke it out!!! I thought ‘what the hell have I let myself in for the day I have nearIy 24hr travelling home to do!!!’ It felt like I was having a session with a chiropractor has she pulled pushed and prodded!!! There was a point where I did have to stop her as I thought she was going to pull my left shoulder out of the socket again!!!

Well I know that I have made it sound like torture but it was 90 minutes of torturous pleasure and the best massage I have EVER had. I came out of the session with a warm tingly glow and I felt great. It’s a shame we only found the spa on our last day as I would definitely have gone back for another one…

“My masseuse was called Phang who spoke enough English to tell me what she was about to do or wanted me to do. I started face down on the massage table, and before knew it she was up on the table in a squatting position above me. As soon as she started I knew it wasn’t going to be a relaxing massage!!!

Now I have a high pain threshold and like a strong firm massage, but with hands squeezing like vices and fingers of steel pressing acupuncture points there were times she took me to a place where it was almost intolerable …just to stop in time and stroke it out!!! I thought ‘what the hell have I let myself in for the day I have nearIy 24hr travelling home to do!!!’ It felt like I was having a session with a chiropractor has she pulled pushed and prodded!!! There was a point where I did have to stop her as I thought she was going to pull my left shoulder out of the socket again as I had dislocated it a few weeks previously.

Well I know that I have made it sound like torture but it was 90 minutes of torturous pleasure and the best massage I have EVER had. I came out of the session with a warm tingly glow and I felt great. It’s a shame we only found the spa on our last day as I would definitely have gone back for another one…”

This is definitely something you should try in Hanoi as it was one of the highlights of my trip to Vietnam. The literature says they have a no tipping policy and the masseuses are well looked after receiving good commission which is better than any city spa. I am not sure how true this is.

I had difficulty accessing the website but my hotel rang the spa for me and booked in the treatment, they also have an email address and say they respond quickly however when I emailed I didn’t receive a reply until a day later and they explained their email system had not been working so if you have no luck emailing do either turn up or ask hotel to contact them as this is a not to be missed activity in Hanoi.

Have you had a massage whilst travelling or even what you think is the best massage in Hanoi. Get in contact as I would love to hear about it and maybe when I return I can try it out.

Further reading

More articles from Travel to Recovery

Water puppet show in Vietnam

Articles from Top travel bloggers about Vietnam

Places to visit in Vietnam

*Currency conversion as 10/03/17

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