Japanese massage and relaxation at Tomoko Spa in Beverly Hills. (Photo: Tomoko Spa)
There’s a new spa in town and if you haven’t been it’s probably best to book your appointment now. Tomoko Spa in Beverly Hills is the dream and vision of Tomoko Kurono, a native of Osaka, Japan, who fell in love with massage at an early age at the hands of her mother, a local healer. From there she always had a passion for massage, traveling the world, until a momentous day when she received a Banyan Tree massage in Thailand that changed her life. From that moment forward, she knew her dream was to open a spa that could transport people to the same mindful place, opening her first spa in Israel 10 years ago.
Tomoko Kurono, founder of Tomoko Spa in Beverly Hills. (Photo: Instagram)
After a successful run, she knew it was time to bring her dream to its truest fruition by opening in Los Angeles. “People feel like they’ve gone to Japan for three hours,” says Tomoko of the little slice of heaven located just a few hundred yards from the luxe shops of Rodeo Drive.
The experience to get is the eponymous Tomoko Massage, a combination of Swedish and Japanese massage traditions. “We begin with the Ashiyu soak to massage the feet and stimulate the body,” says Kurono. This is a key part of the treatment because once the feet are hot the body will relax faster. Next comes the full-body massage followed by a relaxing soak. “We don’t do basic massage — we do the treatment from the heart. It’s energy work. I think that’s most important,” she says of the massage. “After the treatment you can relax in Japanese bath called Ofuro that completely makes you feel like [you are] in Japan.”
What really sets the spa apart from other Japanase and Korean spas is the focus on privacy and quality. “We have only four rooms. It’s completely private so you don’t need to go and take the key into a locker room or a shower room, everything you have just for you,” Tomoko explains. “We use the highest quality vegan oils. All the products we use are organic, so it’s very good for the skin.”
When Kurono opened her LA spa, she had had one big dream: get Jessica Alba to book an appointment. Within two months, the star got pampered at the spa along with her husband, Cash Warren. “It’s good to say your dream out loud,” she says. “Some people think you’re crazy but I believe if you say stuff somehow it comes true.”