OMAMORI is a chain of massage studios run by Blind-Link, a not-for-profit social enterprise that provides employment, support, and training opportunities for the Vietnamese visually impaired community.
Founded in August of 2013, Omamori Spa has become one of the most ideal places for therapy in Ha Noi, especially among the expat community who are living and working in Ha Noi, as well as foreign tourists. After just one year of operation, Omamori Spa has been ranked by TripAdvisor as one of the top 5 places for health care and relaxation in Hanoi, with 95.5% of feedback being ‘’good’’ to “excellent’’! So what are the special factors that have enabled Omamori Spa to win the heart of both domestic and international customers?
The chain studios are named OMAMORI, after a good luck charm. Blind-Link’s founders hope that this new business model will create a better standard of living for millions of the Vietnamese blind and visually-impaired throughout the country. Omamori was set up with the aim of enhancing the employment model for visually-impaired people. We aim to transform some of the negative perceptions of blind people in our society, and show our customers that blind employees can deliver a high quality service within a sustainable business.
The spa itself has a soothing and inviting atmosphere which ensures that customers feel at ease. From the entrance door, a small yard opens up a tranquil space with green trees which evoke vitality and purity. Here you will find Terracotta pots made in Phu Lang ceramic village, Japanese ferns and pebbles, small Japanese cushions…all these tiny, humble and neatly-arranged things bring a calming atmosphere to the visiting customers. The hustle and bustle, pollution and congestion of Hanoi’s daily life seem to vanish right here at the doorstep. A sliding wooden door leads to a Japanese-styled cozy tea room, where a watercolor painting, “Phong Tuc”, hangs on the wall above a vase of Ikebana-arranged cherry blossom. Meditation music plays, breaking the silence in the room and bringing the feeling of stillness. The fragrance of cinnamon or lavender floats gently through the room, representing the flavor of the seasons.
A blind masseuse at Omamori Spa learning English to communicate with her customers
Omamori Spa is currently offering whole-body massages including Omamori Massage (Vietnamese deep tissue massage), Swedish and Hot Stone massages, as well as foot massage and back massage for those who suffer from chronic pain. Our services are distinct thanks to three elements at the heart of our business: the professionalism and dedication of the staff; the affordable prices (150,000 VND/ 60 minutes, no tips); and a wonderful massage for a good cause.
A foreign customer wrote for The New Hanoian:
“I love Omamori Spa because of the positive working attitude of the staff. The receptionists always give the customers a warm welcome, the masseurs and masseuses are highly-skilled. They know exactly what they are doing and are sensitive of your feelings. I can say that they have a genuine passion for their job and they deserve more than 5 stars”. Blind-Link is not only providing employment opportunities through it´s Omamori Spa chain but is also organizing free training programs for the Vietnamese visually-impaired community. These include: English Communication; ongoing Massage Skill Education and Entrepreneurship Education. Furthermore, Blind-Link is the first organization in Vietnam to initiate the White Cane program and has delivered 45 white canes to Vietnamese blind people. So far, 299 student enrollments and beneficiaries in the community have benefited from all kinds of social programs. This success couldn’t have been achieved without the involvement of domestic and international communities - such as students at high schools and universities, international experts and volunteers who have contributed around 12,000 voluntary working hours