TENERIFE INSIDER TIPS

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INTERVIEW WITH ELISABETH

---MASAJES HAMSA---

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First interview

On a beautiful Monday morning, I'm on my way to my very first interview for the Successful Expats chapter. Here, I give a voice to inspiring individuals who consider Tenerife their new home. Expats who have established a business or service that is not only successful but also enriching for the island, its residents, and visitors.

Elisabeth, a massage therapist and founder of Masajes Hamsa, perfectly fits into this profile. Therefore, I asked her to share more about her business with the readers.

Taking it slow...

And so, I leisurely drive to the massage center, located in an idyllic spot on the outskirts of the surfing village of El Médano. Masajes Hamsa is accessible from the TF-1 highway (coming from the direction of Los Cristianos) and also from the village of El Médano itself. I opt for the picturesque sandy path from the village. This means downshifting a bit and taking it slow. A beautiful metaphor for life and a philosophy that resonates well with Masajes Hamsa.

La Cabaña. Foto van het interieur van de massageplek.

Completely 'Zen'

Many people consider their well-deserved vacation as the perfect time for a relaxing massage. Of course, a great idea. But especially in tourist zones, you often come across commercial pop-up salons offering standard massages.

What Elisabeth offers definitely doesn't fall into the standard category. This is evident from the unique location of her massage center: nestled among local vegetation and a banana plantation is the serene cabin of the massage center. It's stylishly decorated, and without coming across as airy-fairy, it feels like I'm becoming 'zen' just by entering the space. If you enjoy peace and quiet, you're in the right place.

Introduction

After Elisabeth has shown me around, we take a seat in the shade of the cozy seating area next to the cabaña, enjoying a delightful cup of tea. The interview can begin!

Elisabeth. Foto van Elisabeth in haar massagesalon.

Elisabeth, would you like to introduce yourself to the readers?

Sure! I am Elisabeth, originally from Belgium. Since 1996, I have called the beautiful Tenerife my home. My journey began with an open ticket and the simple intention of finding a holiday job. Fate intervened when the hotel where I was staying offered me a position as an entertainer.

At that time, I didn't speak a word of Spanish, but that turned out not to be a problem, as most hotel guests came from Northern Europe. Over the years, I learned the language myself, mainly by reading a lot, listening to Spanish music (with a dictionary at hand to translate the songs), and through the wonderful Spanish friends I made along the way.

From entertainer to masseuse... how did that happen?

(laughs) Well, that was certainly not a straightforward transition. Being an entertainer was more of a holiday job. After that, I had various other roles, including receptionist and administrative assistant.

In the meantime, I filled my free time with courses; a few workshops and training sessions on massage techniques such as relaxation massage and reflexology. But I didn't do much with it, at least not at a level where I wanted to turn it into my profession.

Until one day, when I saw a program about Californian Massage. That was it for me: exactly what I wanted!

A month later, I learned the basics in an initiation course in Lanzarote and then decided to complete the full training in Barcelona.

Hamsa handje

And immediately made it your profession?

A good friend decided to establish a massage center during that period and offered me to share the space. It truly felt like a calling, so I registered as a self-employed individual (autónoma) to start working as an independent masseuse.

Eventually, I took my own path and founded my own center: Masajes Hamsa.

What does Californian Massage mean to you as a professional? What, for example, is the difference compared to a more traditional massage?

In my other massages, such as reflexology, it's primarily about pure expertise, a defined technique with little room for creativity.

Californian Massage is different; it focuses on relaxation on a physical and mental level. This allows the person on the treatment table to experience a loving massage, with my attention fully in the present moment. It's essential for me to feel good myself to convey that positive energy.

Now that I'm forging my own path and managing my own time and space, it feels like I've truly come to myself. I pass on that energy to those who receive my massage.

Masajes Hamsa. Interview met Elisabeth. Foto van Elisabeth tijdens Californische Massage.

That sounds exciting, but what does the massage entail exactly?

Californian massage, also known as Esalen massage, is recognized as the 'Art of Conscious Touch.' Long, slow, flowing movements are primarily performed with the hands and forearms, using natural oil. The pressure becomes more intense as the session progresses, going slightly deeper into the most tense areas, but it is not a hard massage.

This technique originated in the 1960s in California but somehow never became widely known in Tenerife. I take enough time for the clients, allowing us to have a brief chat before the session and letting them emerge peacefully from their 'cocoon' afterward. It's about ensuring that people perceive this experience as a moment of complete relaxation.

Where can people go to book a massage with you?

All information is available on my Facebook page. To make an appointment, you can call me or send me a message via WhatsApp on the telephone number:

(0034) 626 186 345

Also feel free to read the reviews on my Google Business profile!

Google Business Profile - Masajes Hamsa. Logo Google Business en logo Masajes Hamsa.
Click here

Thank you very much for the nice conversation. Finally, do you have any tips for people who also want to settle in Tenerife?

Try to be as well-prepared as possible if you plan to settle here. Times have changed; it might have been easier to find a job here in the past. Offering a fun or unique concept is an option. And it's definitely a must to learn a few words in Spanish.

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