Yi Sheng Tang

  • Health
  • Spas
Critics' pick
555 Gubei Lu

All the rage in Japan, stone spas have been linked with healing a wide range of ailments from gout to arthritis and diabetes by their proponents. Whether you buy the medical claims or not, the treatment is definitely something to try and Yi Sheng Tang is currently the only such spa in China. Having changed into loose cotton robes, you’re led to a room on the ground floor with space for 20 people to lie down.

As other customers emerge drenched and panting, you’re taken into the room, kept at 45 degrees and with 80 per cent humidity, and told to lie on your back on the pebbles. Heated from beneath by pipes of hot water, the room is suffocating at first but, as pillow cases filled with more hot pebbles are placed on your shoulders, belly and legs and sweat begins to pour out of you, it becomes more bearable. 

We're told to lie on our back for ten minutes before retiring to a cooler side room to drink water and allow our body to return to a more normal temperature. 

For beginners, a further two-three sessions (of ten minutes, eight minutes and finally five minutes) are recommended, though you can keep going longer if you’re fit and healthy. 

Spa treatments are 148RMB, but 128RMB at off peak times (10am-6pm Mon-Fri), and you can have a traditional Chinese massage for 68RMB.

Venue name: Yi Sheng Tang
Opening hours: 11am-1.30am daily
Metro: Loushanguan Lu
English address: B3, 555 Gubei Lu, near Xianxia Lu, Changning district
Chinese address: 长宁区古北路555号 3楼, 近仙霞路