Oriental Zen [Review]

Length: 4 mins read (878 words)

Outlet: Da Men Subang Jaya, Desa Park City (update)

Service tried: Full body massage

Last visit: June 2019

https://www.facebook.com/pages/category/Massage-Service/Oriental-Zen-Damen-Mall-USJ-1556916884635478/

Cleanliness 3.5 / 5
Customer service 2 / 5
Skill 2.5 / 5
Facility 2.5 / 5
Ambience 2.5 / 5

https://www.facebook.com/pages/category/Health-Spa/Oriental-Zen-Plaza-Arkadia-Desa-ParkCity-364970850991983/

Cleanliness 3.5 / 5
Customer service 3 / 5
Value 3.5 / 5
Facility 3 / 5
Ambience 3.5 / 5

After calling for five days in a row to make an appointment, I finally got it. This session was redeem via a voucher from Fave. I first came across the Oriental Signature group at Pavilion and Fahrenheit but never really try their service until now. I do not know the relation between Oriental Signature, Oriental Health Recovery and Oriental Zen besides sharing the same logo. I tried looking at Oriental Signature website, but I can’t find info on this.

At Level 3 of Da Men, as soon as I reached, I can’t help but to notice that the front facade and reception is definitely very bright, much brighter than any typical massage outlet. When I went in, there was only one therapist (she attended to me) and she was comfortably seating at the sofa area instead of the reception desk. Throughout my time there, the outlet doesn’t really seems to be that busy that one will have to try for five days before successfully making an appointment. Perhaps, they don’t have that many therapist. The whole environment despite being very clean and sterile, the ambience reminds me more of an office rather than a massage place.

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Before the session, I was looking for a toilet and only to find out that there is none inside the outlet and have to go to the one at shopping centre which is pretty far. When I went into the room, I noticed two things that kinda throw me off. First was the boxer (not disposable but a boxer which unsure whether it is clean)….one can only hope it is. Secondly, despite it being room base which may seems to have good privacy, what spoils it was the opening see-through strip on the door. It is eye level and anyone walking pass the door can definitely peep in.

Soon after, the session begins and now, there were three things that threw me off. Firstly, as soon as I lay my head onto the head towel, oh boy, it just smells. It smell is as same as a cloth that has been used to wipe table multiple times and wasn’t wash. Then, my therapist from start to end continued to chew on her chewing gum and I can constantly hear the sound of her doing that (irritating). You can pretty much forget about getting relax and sleep in your session. Thirdly, for the entire 2 hours, all they have as background music was one piano track (classical genre) playing over and over again. I guess that song is about 3 minutes long and you can do your own math on how many rounds one have to listen to. I really don’t mind if a single track is on loop cos some outlets do that too but you have to be smart about choosing the right genre.

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The massage was ok and perhaps was the only saving grace. It was not perfect but it did the job. It was acupressure style working from upper back to leg then head. But when combined with the other elements, the whole experience is nothing zen and definitely not creme de la creme service as claimed by the company description. Maybe this does not represent the entire chain but definitely it is reflective of the brand. With so many competitions out there, there are quite a number of things that definitely need to be looked into for them to stay relevant in the market.

Update: I went to the branch at Farenheit 88 (Sept 2018) known as Oriental Spa Health Recovery Centre and the experience was definitely much more pleasant than what it was at Da Men. The receptionist was friendly and the therapist was professional enough to know what they are doing. I did enjoy the massage there and would score it higher too compared to this.

And recently (June 2019), I tried the outlet at Desa Park City. Even though the therapist is close to non-communicative, her skill was good. Her structure and strength is of good standard and quality. I didn’t wear the boxer provided this time round and just be on my under wear. The bed and headrest was comfortable with good ambience and environment. I would definitely recommend this over the one in Da Men. On hindsight, there need to be some form of quality control by the HQ within the outlets so that the discrepancy of quality is not huge.

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Notes:
-Please bring your own face towel and oil. And possibly, just wear your underwear since you can’t go naked rather than wearing the provided boxer that possibly has been worn by many others before being wash (judging from the smelly face towel)
-Make sure you go to toilet before your session begins

Pros:
-General environment still new and clean (for now)

Cons:
-Professionalism among the therapist can be improved
-The price even after discount is not exactly cheap and the service is subpar