Flower in Brown Table

What is Self-Care Anyway?
The World Health Organization defines self-care as the ability of individuals, families and communities to promote, maintain health, prevent disease and to cope with illness with or without the support of a health care provider. Self-care encompasses several issues including hygiene, nutrition, lifestyle, environmental and socio-economic factors. Promotion of self-care is a means to empower individuals, families and communities for informed health decision-making. It has the potential of improving the efficiency of health systems and contributing towards health equity.

Sabai Front desk

Sabai Thai Massage

We were each invited to experience a whole new level of self-care at Sabai Thai Spa in exchange for a customer review. All opinions are our own.

Herbal and Flower in bamboo square

Hot Herbal Compress – Mara’s Experience
Ok, hold the phone. Did you know that pressing a steaming-hot ball of damp plant material into one’s skin could be the route to deep relaxation? I’ve had many massages in my life for various reasons. Sometimes it was to aid injury recovery, sometimes as a special gift from my family, sometimes as a method of self-care. Sabai Thai’s Hot Herbal Massage was my first torturous-sounding massage in which I was so relaxed, I fell asleep on the table. Four times. I was embarrassed that my 90-minute treatment was so relaxing a snore woke me up mid-compress.


What does it say about me that a strong-handed, firm massage which additionally involved plying my back, limbs and neck with an almost-too-hot muslin bag filled with medicinal herbs put me to sleep? My small but powerful massage therapist Ayuko told me that when her clients fall asleep during the Hot Herbal Massage, she feels she is doing something right. Oh, phew. Good. I can’t wait to do it again.

Buddhist Statue


Ancient Thai Massage – Dee’s Experience
I travelled to Thailand many years ago and why I didn’t try Thai massage there, I will never understand. Stepping into Sabai Thai and seeing the ornate and traditional Thai decor, quickly took me back. Rachel, the kind and friendly receptionist presented me with a delicious cup of ginger tea and explained what I could expect from my Ancient Thai massage treatment.


As I found out, ancient Thai massage differs from the Swedish massage in a few ways. First of all, unlike any other massage I’ve experienced, I threw on some super comfy Thai pyjamas, and then layed down on a large mat on the floor. From the moment Ayuko placed her healing hands on me, I knew I was on the road to relaxation.


Secondly, they use no oils or lotions during Thai massage and my muscles felt pressed rather than rubbed. They say pressure point massage releases blocked energy. I say it feels ahhhhhh-mazing!


Finally, Thai massage involves stretching. Since I felt a little floppy in my state of bliss, I was impressed that Ayuko, who is about half my size, managed to wrangle my limbs into a number of yoga postures. This is done to help improve flexibility and decrease muscle tension. Furthermore, stretching aids in the improvement of sport and fitness performance.


Looking back, I found my Sabai Thai experience fascinating as well as incredibly relaxing. The space was beautiful and tranquil and the treatment was heavenly. Is it too soon to be thinking about Mother’s Day?


4 Locations to Enjoy a Big Dose of Self-Care
Sabai Thai has 4 locations around the city including North Vancouver, West Vancouver, Coal Harbour and Port Coquitlam.

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