Spa Palace

I didn’t think it was possible, but I’ve found a Korean spa that I like more than Wi! The newly opened Spa Palace is just as huge, but cleaner and more peaceful. For now at least it’s a fluffy safe haven. I imagine once word gets out it’s gonna get busier and more hectic.

First off, they have valet parking – FREE with validation! Plus the valet drivers are super nice and helpful with directions so make sure you tip them!

After you drop your car off, you take the elevator to the reception level. They give you a comfy pair of shorts and a t-shirt, plus one large towel (which can be replaced later if you ask.)  I’m usually not a fan of gender binaries, but I do like wearing pink.
IMG_20150905_165706The pool area is decked out with Roman pillars and has a regal look. Shower stalls include vanity mirrors. There are the usual hot and cold pools, plus a dry and wet sauna. The wet sauna has a rich herbal steam that you just want to breathe deep into your lungs.

The women’s only area also has a resting room and a salt room. Plus a very dark nature room where I took a long nap.

The jimjilbang (coed) has the usual array of rooms to cycle through.

Totally understand that they’re going with the palace-theme here, but the door knobs are quite loud whenever you open and close them… so be careful!

oMy favorites were the clay ball room and the Elvan Stone Room. Also, I normally can’t handle the heat of a salt room, but I recommend checking this one out because of its epic ceiling art.
o1If you get hungry, there’s a restaurant with a separate dining area. The menu looked yummy so I’ll have to try a dish next time I come.

After 2 hours of detoxing, I enjoyed primping in the powder room before heading out to face the world again. Ladies, sit down in front of their vanity mirrors because the lighting makes you look gorgeous from every angle.

Spa Palace
620 S Union Ave
Los Angeles, CA90017

Grade: A

Pros: Clean wide open space, friendly service. Lots of rooms and activities to select from. Fun gym uniform to wear. Great music in the locker room.

Cons: Will probably start to get crowded and dirty in a few months, so enjoy this palace while it’s still new!

Wilshire Spa

Gave Wilshire Spa a go.

spa

The daily entry fee is $20 ($25 after 10pm) but with a GroupOn I got in for $10. There’s also free parking with validation.

A lot of the women wore flip flops. One lady even had on swim shoes. I understand the need to keep feet clean and the fear or shower floor fungus, but wearing shoes only made the floor dirtier since everyone tracked whatever was on the bottom of their footwear onto the tiles. I’d rather people just wash their feet super clean.

The decor was pleasant but nothing impressive. I did enjoy alternating between the cold and hot pools. That’s not something I’d normally bother with, but I had come with a friend who was really encouraging about it and helped me get over the initial shock of ice cold water.

pools

We also snuck into the steam room even though there was a sign saying that it was closed. It was still operational, although part of the ceiling was falling down.  Other rooms include a sauna, salt room, and charcoal room. The rooms were small, probably couldn’t fit more than 4 people comfortably, but luckily there wasn’t too many ladies around. The men have their own area, and there’s no unisex level to meet up, so don’t expect to lounge with your boy.

There’s plenty of water, no cafe. If you want food, the front desk will order takeout for you and have it delivered.  They offer scrubs and massages, but the massage area looks like a marine surgical unit so I didn’t partake.

I had a really fun time because I came with my friend and it was a great bonding experience, something about sweating out your pores allows conversation to move more freely. I think if I had come alone though I would’ve been bored with access to only a few rooms, and I’d probably drive my self crazy focusing on the visible grime.

water

Pros: Friendly diverse atmosphere, I saw people of all races here, and everyone seemed open to casual conversation. The wood in the locker room is IKEAesque pretty. Easy parking, decent neighborhood with lots of restaurants nearby.

Cons: No extra towels, cheap lotions, subpar cleanliness, limited facilities. Does not operate 24 hours, open till 2am on Fridays and Saturdays.

Grade: C+

Wilshire Spa
3442 Wilshire Blvd
Ste 100
Los Angeles, CA 90010
Neighborhood: Koreatown
(213) 387-0281