As quoted in 2003: "Spas... the word that was once a whisper, is now the word and experience that people cannot be with out. Many thought that it was a passing trend, but they have been proved wrong... spas are anything but a fad they are a lifestyle and a vital element to finding balance and relaxation within our lives."

With this introduction we celebrate the 4th annual Les Nouvelles Esthetiques Spa Awards, hosted by Les Nouvelles Esthetiques South Africa in association with Les Nouvelles Esthetiques Paris, on Sunday the 6th July 2008, at The Sandton Sun Hotel in Sandton, Johannesburg.

The Les Nouvelles Esthetiques Spa Awards Gala Dinner evening was filled with excitement and glamour as some of the industries most respected and well-known names came together to acknowledge their peers, while being entertained by the memorable Christine Mansour, after the prestigious opening by Jean Pierre Cerveau, Conseiller Commercial, French Consulat.

Through the success of the previous awards, the Les Nouvelles Esthetiques Spa Awards have shown tremendous growth. The 2008 Spa Awards consisted of six Categories – the Boutique Spa Category, the Day Spa, Resort/Hotel Spa, Unique Spa Concept, Safari Spa and Medi-spa categories.

The Les Nouvelles Esthetiques Day Spa Category Finalists were Savanna Spa, on the private Blair Athol Estate, Life Day Spa, Fourways Johannesburg and their sister spa, Renaissance Day Spa, Sandton Johannesburg. The winner of the Day Spa Category was Woodlands Centre for Well-being & Spa, Muldersdrift, Johanneburg.

Vygenhoek Organic Spa was announced as the winner of the Unique Spa Concept Category. The judging of the Unique Spa Concept Category was extremely difficult, as all spas in this category were very different; therefore the finalists in this category included Mangwanani Zevenwacht, Summerfields River Lodge and Rose Spa and Chicama Country Spa at Glenburn Lodge.

The finalists for the Boutique Hotel Category were Constantia Uitsig Spa, Ruimsig Country Spa and Guest House, ONEwellness at The Dock House, V&A and the winner is Fordoun Spa in Nottingham Road, KZN Midlands.

The medi-spa category, a developmental category of the spa awards in appreciation of the international trends, was awarded to Vivacite Medical Spa, Pretoria and full recognition additionally goes to the finalist in this category: Renew Clinic, Umhlanga; Skin Renewal, Parkhurst, Johannesburg and Glasshouse, a specialist spa for men in Cape Town.

Safari Spa Category finalists were Shakama Wellness Centre and Zebu Health Spa, both in Bela Bela and Ukuthula Spa, north of Pretoria with The Waters of Royal Malewane being selected as the winner of the Safari Spa Category.

The Resort/Hotel Spa Category included some magnificent resorts, where the finalists included Arabella Spa at the Arabella Western Cape Hotel and Spa, Hermanus, Camelot Spa at Le Franschhoek Hotel and Camelot Spa at Velmore Estate, Pretoria. The winner of the Resort/Hotel Spa Category was ONEwellness at the Radisson Hotel, Cape Town.

Les Nouvelles Esthetiques would like to congratulate all the finalists and winners as they continue to excel in providing the South African community with the keys to relaxation and wellness.

The Spa Awards programme is more than pure recognition of achievement, it sets a benchmark for spas in South Africa, and all the finalists and winners are worthy of this acknowledgment.

For more information, visit Les Nouvelles Esthetiques South Africa.