By Mary Rambin

I’ve been rubbed down, stretched out, bathed, splashed, scrubbed, tugged, the whole nine all over the world. And I’m here to tell you, there is not one person on this planet that gives a massage better than Emin at the ZaSpa at Hotel ZaZa in Houston, Texas. That’s right, you heard me, Houston.  Isn’t he a cutie pie? And so sweet too! (His name is pronounced A-meen by the way.)

The rest of the spa delivers in a magical day of R&R as well.

Because I’m native Houstonian (and I’ll be honest, I dated an employee of the hotel briefly), the Hotel ZaZa is like a home away from home for me. A very NICE home I might add. There aren’t many boutique hotels in Texas; mostly major chains dominate the market. The smaller establishments thankfully are done right – luxurious, comfortable, and above-and-beyond accommodating. The Hotel ZaZas, both in Houston and Dallas, are like a plush W Hotels featuring trendy decor, a witty attitude, a hip crowd, and a lot of velvet.

The spa itself is quite small but lavish.  They spared no expense on chandeliers and more importantly their staff and equipment.  I’m not sure why this is, but all of their treatments are reasonably priced. Plus, they offer a daily discount treatment and seasonal specials. If you plan it right, it’s SpaWeek all the time over there.

On to the services.

I’ve never seen mani-pedi chairs that fully recline like this, have you? They fully recline and support my legs so I don’t have to wiggle my legs constantly, and the esthetician doesn’t break her back.

The Starlight Facial with Skin Ceuticals products (one of my favorite skin care lines) is also exceptional.  It cleared up my breakout in a couple of days.

I’m not sure what this room is for, but it looks like fun!

Like I said, Emin is amazing.  When I first got a massage from him years ago, I thought he used hot stones the whole time.  Come to find out afterwards, those warm and smooth solid-as-rocks surfaces were his hands!

His understanding of the muscular system is extensive so when I pointed out my pain, he knew exactly how to attack it.

Along with your treatment, you’re welcome to use the pool, which is often desolate on weekdays. Weekends you’ll find the scene to be a little like Vegas.

Don’t leave without eating at The Monarch downstairs.  The deconstructed Ahi Tuna Roll is delicious.  Say hi to Alex the manager.  I’m sure he’ll happily buy you a glass of champagne!

If you’re in Dallas, I love the ZaZa there as well.  The original property is the go-to spot for celebs when they’re in town.  I ran into Kid Rock and his entourage after a weekend of partying.  Needless to say they looked like they could use a spa day!

Both the Houston and Dallas locations are participating in Spa Week Oct 10-16. Their $50 treatments are:

  • 50 Min Big Chill Swedish Massage
  • 50 Min Deep Cleansing Facial
  • 50 Min On the Rocks Pedicure

ZaSpa at Hotel ZaZa
2332 Leonard Street
Dallas, TX 75201

ZaSpa at Hotel ZaZa
5701 Main Street
Houston, TX 77005

Mary Rambin of is a professional blogger and travel features writer for The Houston Chronicle. In NYC, she co-founded NonSociety and produced a weekly web series called TMI Weekly. Now she trains small businesses in the basics of social media amidst her travels all over the world.  Follow Mary on Twitter at @MaryRambin.