miraj hammam spa toronto

Miraj Hammam Shangri La Hotel

Miraj Hammam is tucked away on the fifth floor of the Shangri-La Hotel Toronto . The Moroccan-inspired spa is notable for being one of two in North America to partner with French skincare brand Caudalie. Though the Middle Eastern-style atmosphere is a bit of an outlier within the hotel, it's no less luxurious than the rest of its home base: Gorgeously opulent textures like marble and dark wood characterize the interior, spiced up with bright textiles for an invigorating feel.

A French vineyard influence is entwined with the Moroccan theme - Caudalie's products, which are used in the facials and body treatments, incorporate grapes and grape extracts. That's also reflected in the wine barrel-like hydrotherapy pool in one of the private suites, as well as the dried-vine sculptures (imported from Bordeaux) that decorate the halls.

miraj hammam spa toronto

The spa gets its name from its signature feature - a marble-panelled hammam steam room that lets visitors sweat out stress at temperatures of up to 120 F. It's also the site of their most popular treatment: the gommage, a mega-exfoliating full-body scrub. Spa director Daryll Naidu adds their slate of wine-extract facials ($165-275) and body treatments ($115-155) are also popular.

miraj hammam spa toronto

In addition, there's also a manicure and pedicure area that boasts three manicure areas, five pedicure areas, and a view overlooking University Ave. Several private treatment rooms contain tables suitable for facials, massages and body treatments, including the aforementioned barrel-tub room (a self-contained suite that includes a shower/mini steam room and washroom, which Naidu says is a favourite with celebrity guests).

miraj hammam spa toronto

On my visit, I try out the signature hammam and gommage ($130 for a half-hour treatment). Since the rooms aren't shared (unless a couple or a group chooses to book it), I've got the huge, grotto-like space all to myself. The woman handling my treatment leads me into the low-intensity part of the room, and I'm hit with a wave of heat, followed by a sinus-clearing blast of eucalyptus. I'm not sure whether I can stand the temperatures - but after a few moments in the low-intensity chamber, then in the steam-filled high-intensity area, that worry subsides (the glass of cold water they provide helps).

miraj hammam spa toronto

The therapist shows me to a marble bench within the fog, saying she'll be back after my 15 minutes is up. I spread out on the stone surface (lying on top of your sarong is recommended, unless you enjoy the feeling of being suctioned to a marble slab) and get acclimatized to the strangely cozy, secluded feeling of being shrouded in dense, eucalyptus-infused vapour, alone in the silence except for the occasional hum of the steam generator. (Bonus activity for fellow overactive imagination-havers: imagine yourself in some kind of lost temple underneath a volcano!)

miraj hammam spa toronto

I'm brought back into the low-intensity part of the hammam for the gommage scrub. The therapist slicks on some of the eucalyptus-scented black soap, then gives me a very, very thorough scrubbing with an exfoliating mitt. The scrub ranged from ticklish to wince-inducing (though it's possible I may just be a wuss when it comes to exfoliation), but the therapist made this relative spa neophyte feel quite at ease (and not judged for giggling).

Afterward, I'm instructed to rinse off (using a shower hose attached to the wall). My skin doesn't feel noticeably different - maybe a little rawer - but the esthetician points out visible flakes of sloughed-off skin on the towel (whoa) and says I'll likely notice a difference in the next few days. There's no moisturization or post-treatment phase to the gommage, though, which would have been welcome.

miraj hammam spa toronto

Afterwards, I take my thoroughly-scrubbed self down the hallway to the after-treatment lounge, which is Naidu says is meant to "give the impression of guests leaving the city". Large, bed-like booths filled with cushions line the lounge. It's late on a Tuesday, and I've got the place to myself; someone brings by a piece of baklava, some grapes and a small glass of tea, and I alternate between flipping through magazines and gently dozing.

miraj hammam spa toronto

While the exfoliating treatment just might not have been for me (I really didn't notice much of a difference in my skin the days after my visit), the peaceful, gorgeous environment and unique steam facilities really do make Miraj Hammam feel like a world away from University Ave. - it's a perfect place to get away from it all.

miraj hammam spa toronto

Photos by James C Lee.


Miraj Hammam Shangri La Hotel

Leaflet | © Mapbox © OpenStreetMap Improve this map

Join the conversation Load comments

Miraj Hammam Shangri La Hotel

Latest Reviews

The Feral

Dresden Vision

Nordstrom Rack Toronto

Haven Toronto

Neighbour

Frank and Oak Women’s Studio