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Aloe Vera Juice Beauty – Inspired by Chiva Som’s Pure Source Treatments

15 Jan

Chiva Som has an entire treatment series devoted to the use of aloe. I already love playing with aloe vera juice to create new DIY spa treats so I buy it by the gallon from The Vitamin Shoppe. Many people swear drinking it helps digestive problems, but I tried and nearly gagged! I’ll stick to topical uses thanks.

basil pic via

The spa mixes aloe with a secret blend of essential oils which they won’t divulge. So I created my own Chiva Som aloe blend, with lemongrass and basil. Popular ingredients in Thai cuisine, both Lemongrass and Basil have aromatherapeutic benefits ideal for curing the winter doldrums.

Lemongrass is known to be uplifting for it’s citrusy aroma and is available from retailers like Seed Parade.

Lemongrass on one of my favorite spa CDs!

Basil is said to clear the mind, induce focus & is one of the best all around rejuvenating fragrances

There are 2 ways to make the blend: Either buy fresh lemongrass & basil from the grocery & mash with a mortar & pestle. Then mix it into aloe juice & keep in the refrigerator. Or if you prefer, buy essential oils – about 5 drops ea. per cup of aloe juice.

Some ways to use this beauty nectar:

Manicure Moisturizer – Pour into fingertip bowls and soak to banish dry cuticles

Body Bliss – Exfoliate your body with your favorite scrub. Apply aloe with hands or a bush. Wrap in a warm towel (right out of the dryer is yummy) and relax for 15 – 20 mins. Shower off in cool water.

Office Pick Me Up – Keep a small glass of the concoction on your desk. Throughout the day, slather on hands (it dries super fast) or just inhale the aroma.

If you missed any other Chiva Som features this week, check out how to make their Marinated Sea Bass or Taro Cake. Do their Thai Kickboxing class or decorate your bedroom. Just click Chiva Som at the right.

Live, Love & Lounge, Candy


Chiva Som Styled Boudoir & a Tranquility Tree

15 Jan

One of Chiva Som’s star accommodations is the Golden Bo Suite. With separate day, dining and living areas plus the bedroom it’s definitely not your typical hotel room. So let’s steal some of this style for our own boudoirs shall we?  Caveat:  You must love color!

Golden Bo Suite

The Silk Road

This greenish mustard makes for an inviting bed cover.

Sumptuous Thai silk outfits every soft good & upholstered surface. So glam! The furnishings, linens, window treatments all sport it. But hey we live in the real world, dogs, cats, kids, wine drinking – Silk probably isn’t the most practical choice for all furniture and linens.

But, why not mix silk with more durable fabrics? For instance, go silk with pillows and sheets (trust me you’ll never go back) and keep furnishings and duvets in a washable blend. For instance, this Nora coverlet set from Crate and Barrel which is cotton.

These Thai Silk Pillow Covers from Decorish are an inexpensive way to update your throw pillows. And for less than $5!

These would look stunning on a chocolate brown chair or bench.$5!

Pan Asian Palette

And can we talk about those luscious jewel tone colors?  Brilliant apple green & grape accents, a slightly mossy green for the window treatments, a rich merlot accent wall, chocolate upholstered sofas and chairs.

Love Amalfi Red by Ralph Lauren Home for the wall.

Through the Looking Glass

If you have a large space that needs dividing, check out what Chiva Som did here. A large hanging mirror divides the day and sleeping spaces. It creates separation but maintains a bright and airy room by reflecting light.

*Note – don’t attempt this without a professional – a mirror that large will need to be secured into the studs to ensure a sturdy hold. We don’t want this baby to fall and break, talk about 7 years of bad luck! This large Solano mirror from Pottery Barn would fit the bill perfectly!

Ring Around the Tree

Though not in the suite, nearby on Chiva Som’s grounds many of the trees have wide benches built around the trunks. Not touching the tree, slightly away so as not to damage it.

Relaxing under a tree at Chiva Som

What an excellent idea to add some relaxing space to a yard that is more trees than open space. Take a few pillows, your favorite blanket, a glass of wine. . . and spend some quality spa time in the garden. This eucalyptus one from Improvements Catalog fits the bill perfectly.

DIY verson from Improvements

Live, love and lounge, Candy

Chiva Som Fitness Class at Home: Thai Kickboxing

13 Jan

Thai kickboxing is a martial arts form that evolved from ancient battle practices. In the boxing ring, it can be quite brutal – an unlikely candidate for spadom right? Well, Chiva Som has a workout that vibes the cardio and strength building capabilities of this sport, without the gore. It’s a superb way to burn fat and learn some self-defense skills to boot.

Fortunately you needn’t travel to Thailand to do this workout. Richard Bustillo’s Muay Thai Workout DVD gives you the means to learn it at home!

Get to it!  Live, Love & Lounge, Candy

Taro Cake from Chiva Som

13 Jan

This Chiva Som dessert uses Taro root. What’s a Taro you may ask?  It’s a plant common to Thailand often the root is shredded and stir fried tempura style and served as a vegetable.  But it also makes a delicious cake as you’ll see below.  Did you know Taro Root is also a substitute for potatoes?  I wonder how potatoes would be in this recipe?  Hmmmm

500 ml (18 fl oz/2 ½ cups) coconut milk
350 g (12 oz) grated palm sugar
150 g (5 ½ oz) taro, peeled, cubed and streamed for 15-20 minutes
35 g (1 ½ oz) rice flour
10 egg whites
3 whole eggs

Taro Cake

Mix all ingredients by hand using a shredded banana or pandan leaf. Strain, and pour the mixture into a square baking dish, or into separate ramekin dishes. Place on a deep baking tray in 2.5 cm (1 inch) water. Place the bain-marie in the oven and bake at 145°C (300°F) for 20 minutes or until the cake is cooked. Leave to cool and cut cake as desired.

Nutrients Per Piece
428.32 cal
Protein 8.88 g
Carbohydrate 53.07 g
Fat 19.81 g

Baked Marinated Sea Bass With Turmeric Served With Spicy Green Mango Relish

13 Jan

Direct from Chiva Som – I know what I’m cooking for dinner tonight ; )

Marinated Seabass
200 g Seabass fillet
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tbsp coconut milk
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp honey

Green Mango Relish
200 g green mangos, peeled and julienned
30 g carrot, peeled and julienned
30 g shallots, finely sliced
1 bird’s eye chilli, or red chili pepper finely chopped
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp lime juice
Coriander, for garnish

Marinated Seabass
Preheat the oven to 100C. Marinate seabass with turmeric, coconut milk, soy sauce and honey then bake for 10 minutes or until medium cooked. Set aside.

Green Mango Relish
To prepare dressing, whisk soy sauce, honey, lime juice and chilli in a bowl until well mixed. Add all remaining relish ingredients to the bowl with the dressing. Gently toss until evenly mixed.

To Serve
Arrange the baked seabass on the centre of plate, put the green mango relish on top of the fish, and sprinkle with coriander leaves.

Nutrition per serving
calories 341.1 kcal
Protein 52.1 g
Carbohydrate 25.0 g
Total Fat 3.2 g

Week 2 Feature Spa: Chiva Som Health Resort

13 Jan

Chiva Som, also known as the “Haven of Life” lives up to it’s name.  Truly a respite from the world, it’s located in Hua Hin, a posh resort & beach town in Thailand 200 km south of Bangkok. With only 58 rooms, located on the Gulf of Thailand, Chiva Som promises an intimate spa experience.

Your trip would likely start with a Mercedes limo picking you up at the airport for a three hour ride to the resort.  Once settled in, most guests see a licensed health practitioner.  Medical doctors, nurses, naturopaths and holistic practitioners are on staff to evaluate emotional, spiritual and physical status.

Guests then receive recommendations to achieve their goals such as eating plans, fitness courses, holistic therapies and spa treatments.   Chiva Som is adamant in ensuring it’s guests leave energetic, full of life and their well-being back into balance.

After all, if we’ve traveled all the way to Thailand, we should go home with significant knowledge and enlightenment!  Some of our favorite ways to spa at to aChiva Som (sorry couldn’t resist):

-Fitness classes (many performed on the beach can’t you just hear the waves crashing?) including Body Control & Stretching by Candlelight and Thai boxing

-Spa Treatments like Watsu (underwater massage), Crystal Therapy to balance body chakras (energy), Signature Deep Hand Massage (perfect for us bloggers) and the volcanic foot massage.

-Holistic Therapies:  Including nutritional counseling and detox programs, but the star is Chi Nei Tsang – an abdominal massage unique to Thailand that detoxes and helps digestive issues.

Chi Nei Tsang

They even offer a Medical Spa where you can have Botox, Restylane and medical grade facials and body work.

This week we’ll cook up a few of Chiva Som’s award winning spa recipes like Marinated Sea Bass and Taro Cake, learn how to do DIY watsu (water massage), drench our hair and body with the Aloe Vera Intensive treatment and emulate the warm natural decor of the spa’s luxurious and colorful suites in our bedrooms.  But for now, enjoy this photo tour. *Images this week via Chiva Som

Volcanic Foot Treatment


Meditation in the Garden

Overlook the Gulf of Thailand from your Private Balcony

Tranquility awaits

Even the Spa Boutique is kitted out in Warm Woods

Crabmeat with Mango - YUM!