After reading extensively previous reviews on both The Encore Spa and the Spa at The Mandarin, I chose to treat myself to a much needed obscene amount of treatments at both facilities. Yes, both The Encore and The Mandarin were extremely pricey whether it be a polish change or an 80 minute facial, however, there were significant differences, though subtle to the discerning clientele.
At the Encore, like a previous reviewer had stated, there is nothing left to the imagination. Bling, gold, ornate, over the top etc. etc. but this is Vegas. A bit much on the eyes. Upon check-in at The Encore, the first order of business is your credit card and paperwork while standing at the counter prior to being escorted inside. Contrary to Encore, at The Mandarin, the first order of business, though the need to check-in is understandable, there is no exchange of money until after services are rendered (so déclassé of Encore) they escort you to a quiet and serene area, sit you down while a tea hostess serves you a tea (in a porcelain cup) of your choice on a tray with a cold cloth. So civilized and the surroundings are understated elegance! But I digress.
Once I completed the stressful, much needed financial obligations at the front desk at Encore, I was then escorted to a " lounge reception" area where there containers of pre-chilled citrus water, Lipton tea in a bag, or a pre-chilled cucumber water. Your beverage of choice could be served in none other than a paper cup. I was disappointed.
I was escorted through the facility. It was to say the least, extensive and certainly addressed all the needs from dry saunas to wet, plunge pools both cold and hot, showers, lockers and changing areas. It was plentiful.
Upon changing into my robe, I then waited in the lounge area (enormous) where one can quietly (supposedly) read prior to your therapist collecting you for your service. What I noticed was a constant movement between the front desk staff where there was direct access through the drapery lined walls to an anti-room. Essentially, this lounge area was a thoroughfare. Not so quiet.
With so many, "ladies in waiting", it was reminiscent of the Seinfeld "Soup Nazi" episode of eager and hungry pedestrians waiting to retrieve their soup upon hearing the shrill voice of, "Next" which permitted their next step forward. Not so serene and tranquil of a transition point, more like herding cattle.
After then being retrieved by my therapist and escorted down what seemed to be like an I95 corridor with hundreds of treatment rooms on either side, lights, chandeliers, mirrors etc, I was fortunate enough to have experienced a lovely, and relaxing body treatment with in-room shower facility to top it off.
Yes, the facility has everything your heart desires. Yes, the facility is ornate and larger than any spa I have experienced, but Encore lacks the subtle details of civility and understated elegance that I prefer.
The woman in the looker room having an in-depth conversation on her cell phone in the ladies changing area pretty much summed up those that appear to enjoy this type of facility. The staff did nothing to discourage this type of behavior.
In summary, I am glad I went,methought doubtful that I would return.