Perth residents and visitors now have a new place to de-stress with strangers, friends or family in the form of Ember Bath House, which opened at the end of August 2023. Behind a bronze door in Osborne Park, the bath house features an ice bath, hot mineral bath, sauna and steam room.
You can also book in for a massage or treatment, which will be held in its studio, and relax after in a tea lounge. Towels, robes and slippers are all provided, and bathing suites are mandatory. The bath house welcomes just eight at a time, and all genders, but only those 18 years old or older, and requires all guests to leave their phones in lockers to ensure maximum relaxation.
Ember Bath House’s director Sam Rodarte was inspired by her time bathing overseas, observing that cultures from around the world have practiced their own cleaning and unwinding rituals for centuries. She wanted to create something similar in Australia.
“There wasn’t a place in Perth that was fully dedicated to the art of bathing,” says Rodarte. “A place people could unplug and dive into the senses.”
The bath house includes subtle touches from bathing rituals around the world. For instance, the showers include Hinoki wooden stools and buckets used in Japanese onsen. Rodarte says she appreciates the simple act of sitting close to the floor, watching water fill the bucket and then mindfully rinsing the body.
“The Finns have mastered the art of the sauna,” says Rodarte. “In our Finnish sauna, water is placed on hot kiuas stone creating heat and steam. The sound is dreamy.”
Meanwhile, Ember Bath House’s steam room was inspired by the Moroccan hammam. All body treatments and wraps start in the steam room, warming the body and opening the pores in preparation for deep exfoliation. Unlike in a traditional hammam, though, treatments at Ember Bath House are held in a private room. Massages are 60 minutes starting at $150, and 90 minutes starting at $190, while facials are 30 minutes from $75.
“Our therapists all completed their education abroad and have worked in spas around the world, Switzerland, French Alps, Tahiti, Maldives and India,” says Rodarte.
If someone were to have the “ultimate” Ember Bath House experience, Rodarte says you start at the Finnish sauna before taking the daring plunge into the ice bath. Next, she says, relax in the hot mineral bath where you can meditate to the sound of running water.
“Complete the bath house journey in a cloud of steam,” says Rodarte. “Add on a massage of choice — Ember Embrace, Hot Stone, Deep Tissue, Ayuverdic Way with Shirodhara. And finally, why not splurge with a facial?”
A single visit to the bath house costs $89 with 90 minutes of access to the hot mineral bath, ice bath, sauna and stream room. But for better value, opt for a three-visit pass for $246, five-visit for $392 and 10-visit for $756.