SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) - It's the first massage business of its kind this side of the Pacific and it landed here in San Francisco. If it's rest and relaxation you seek, however, prepare for a slap in the face.
Another massage parlor in San Francisco? Ho-hum, you might think. But if you take a look at the ad for the brand new Tata Massage parlor, you might be surprised to see what it's offering: face-slapping.
"Of course the first reaction is, 'What? Face slapping?'" said Mawin Sombuntham, who runs the parlor with his wife, Tata.
Of course it is. That's why the new massage parlor is also happy to advertise its license by the state of California to slap you.
To truly understand the technique you have to have firsthand experience, so CBS 5 brought along one of its interns, Allie, to take on the new service.
So what is it?
"It's from ancient Thai wisdom that's been passed down from generation to generation, and it's a secret technique," said Sombuntham.
Tata, who is the masseuse at the parlor, has been face-slapping for two years. She danced to music and slapped away at Allie as the massage began.
"Circulation is part of it, but it's optimizing the fat and tissues and muscles that are in the face," said Sombuntham.
Tata and her husband believe this will catch on as a non-invasive, chemical-free treatment. It will cost $350 for each session. They do half the face at a time, and they say the results last six months.
"We don't get rid of wrinkles actually, we only lessen the wrinkles," said Sombuntham.
Of course, Allie is only 21 and has more guts than wrinkles.
"There was no stinging at all. It felt like a really strong pressure on my face and then other times it was actually quite gentle," she said.
They told her they lifted her left eyebrow, slimmed her left cheek, and reduced the line around her mouth.
Next for the folks at Tata is "butt punching," which claims to firm and shape your rear.
For more information on Tata Massage, click here to visit its website.
(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)
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