Nip and tuck vacations offer more than spiritual rejuvenation
When an old flame of mine recently emailed me about renting a villa in Thailand
for her family, I quickly sent links to a few choice properties in the Luxury Villas and Homes portfolio that I though ticked all the holiday boxes — large private pool, panoramic ocean views and plenty of comfy, furnished outdoor spaces to lounge in while the kids messed about in the water within safe monitoring distance. I thought I'd covered all the bases, but when she replied asking which one was best for convalescence, I began to worry.
"Have you been ill?", I asked. Are you bringing your aged granny all the way to Thailand?". As it turned out, part of the reason for her trip was, in fact, to have a few "nips and tucks" in Bangkok, before heading down to join her hubby and the kids on the islands for some healing time. She wanted to return home not only looking relaxed and tanned, but also pretty much feeling like a new woman.
Initially I was quite surprised by this news. As far as I remembered, my friend was aging far better than me, but when I asked around the office I soon discovered that cosmetic vacations are quite the norm in Thailand, not only for women but guys too. Bangkok has a stellar reputation for quality procedures and even though Thailand offers a vast range of treatments, medial and otherwise, cosmetic surgery is by far the most common choice among medical tourists.
With a little research I found out that facelifts, boob jobs and tummy tucks have been drawing international visitors for quite a few years. A 2011 WHO report reported that Thailand is among the top three medical tourism destinations in Asia, along with Singapore and India, which between them accounted for 90% of the medical tourism market share in the region in 2008.
The main reason for Thailand's popularity as a place for body upgrade is clearly price. Compared to similar procedures on offer in hospitals and clinics in the West, Bangkok is very affordable. What's more, the Thai capital is also a top choice for those seeking the most complex form of all cosmetic procedures, namely a sex-change. This means Thai plastic surgeons are skilled in a whole host of delicate techniques, guaranteeing high quality and professionalism.
Of course, the majority of people coming to Thailand for a physical makeover are not looking to find their inner transexual. The most popular choices include liposuction, breast augmentation for women or reduction for men, ear surgery, facelifts, tummy tucks, body contouring and rhinoplasty (nose jobs). All of which can be carried out relatively swiftly by Thailand's well trained doctors, many of whom have experience treating foreign patients.
Another obvious bonus is the choice of options for post-op recuperation. As my former girlfriend had worked out, Thailand's warm, sunny climate helps speed up recovery time. On top of which, easy access to a range of traditional health practices, particularly on islands like Koh Samui
, also allows cosmetic travellers to combine surgical adjustments with more holistic healing and relaxation techniques, such as massage, Reiki and acupuncture.
When I dropped by for a cocktail on her private beach
terrace, my friend looked the picture of health and youthful vitality. The combination had clearly worked for her. I must admit, the idea of zapping a few of those screen induced lines around my eyes suddenly seemed like a damn good idea.
by LVH Marketing