Tucked away in a suburban street, is Muswell Hill’s best kept secret. Behind two large barnyard style doors, you will find Emi Hojo and her Rikyu salon – a sanctuary for those in need of some pampering…Japanese style.
A modern health and beauty salon practising ancient Japanese traditions, Rikyu offers a wide range of holistic, therapeutic and aesthetic treatments. Claiming to promote well-being and to rejuvenate the spirit, Emi works with her clients to create a harmony between the mental, spiritual and physical – bringing out their ‘inner beauty and serenity.’
After opting for a facial that I was told would work like a ‘non surgical facelift’, I was surprised to find that I would have to remove my clothing (the top half anyway), Emi reassured me that that this is necessary as she would need to work on my shoulders, neck and arms. Emi claims that the face is affected by the lymph nodes in these areas and working on them (with massage) affects the look and profile of the face itself.
From that point onwards, it is hard to describe the sensations, smells and dreamlike state that engulfed me for the next hour! My shoulders, neck, back, arms and face were massaged with the most beautiful smelling natural oils and creams, the lilting sounds of Japanese music played in the background and I found myself drifting off into what felt like a whole other world. In fact, Emi’s firm but gentle massage technique sent me off into a very deep sleep after 30 minutes, only to be awoken by a mist of citrus spray! The treatment left me feeling completely serene and my face softer and smoother than it has been for years.
In truth, it’s not just Emi’s amazing skill and ability in transporting you mind body and soul back to ancient times, it is her warm disposition and serene nature that will keep you coming back. What you will find at Rikyu is an escape from a hectic world, a sanctuary for those who are stressed out with work, commuting or family life. If you are looking for somewhere to hide and be pampered for an hour or so, Rikyu could be just what you are looking for.
- The closest station is Highgate and it is under 20 minutes walk or a few minutes drive from there.
- Once you step through the large front doors, you simply turn left. There are no steps to navigate and apart from a small reception room, the space is mostly taken up by the large treatment room.
- Emi starts each treatment with a series of questions around your health and lifestyle (all done verbally, so no forms to fill out). She does this inorder to advise on the treatment that you might need.
- Emi greets her guest with a cup of herbal tea from beautiful Japanese cups. You will also need to remove your shoes, which Emi explains is customary in Japanese culture. Emi will then provide you with a pair of sandals to be worn in the treatment room.
Rikyu is open Monday to Friday 11am to 8pm
Saturday and Sunday 10am to 6pm
10 Ellington Road
Telephone: 07545 129 237