Alla Svirinskaya

Gurus on location

Four months of a new marriage, a new home and never-ending film script traumas had wiped me out down to the level of my soul. They say that if someone breaks your spirit, someone else always restores your hope. That is exactly what happened during my five-day stay at the magical health resort of Chiva Som, where I met the healer Alla Svirinskaya. With Svirinskaya on board, Chiva Som, a small idyll overlooking the Gulf of Siam, is a far cry from being just another exotic, swanky spa. Sure, every inch has been feng shui-ed so the physical attention to detail is outstanding but the resort also has a real commitment to healing.

'Chiva Som is like the most exclusive healing hospital in the world,' says Svirinskaya, who believes that crucial to healing is the chance for integration. 'To open up and release negative energies, we need to be in a secure environment.' Certainly with everything in such abundance at Chiva Som (there is an endless supply of fresh white towels and fresh juices), you feel nurtured and safe enough really to let go.

Svirinskaya, in her late 20s, is a fifth-generation Russian healer who practises bio-energy healing. 'I have the ability to sense people's auras, and by channelling energy through the hands, I can balance their energetic field.' Her staggering international client list includes Cherie Blair, Hugh Grant and Elizabeth Hurley.

When Svirinskaya treated me, I felt electric sparks shooting from my head. 'It's just energy moving,' she said. 'You're letting go of negative energy.' She diagnosed a hereditary thyroid problem, over-exhausted adrenal glands and an allergy to wheat. I felt spaced-out and weepy after her sessions, so it was heaven to be able to lie in the sun and re-group. After three treatments, my raging hunger subsided and my hands stopped trembling. I left feeling emotionally grounded and spiritually replete.

Anna Pasternak, Tatler