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Azerbaijan spa treats customers in crude oil baths

Tuesday, June 30, 2015 - 01:24

A spa in oil-rich Azerbaijan offers customers a chance to treat their health issues by bathing in crude oil. Elly Park reports.

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In energy-rich Azerbaijan locals are taking full advantage of its resources by literally swimming in black gold. The Naftalan health centre offers visitors crude oil baths, an age-old practice dating back as far as the 6th century. Seb, a tourist from Australia came to the Azeri capital to try the slick treatment. SOUNDBITE: Australian Tourist, Seb, saying (English) "It's pretty OK, it's about the same temperature as a normal bath, it's a bit like chocolate I suppose in texture, reminds me of those chocolate fountains at the malls. Pretty warm, pretty painless, does not really smell much." The oil called Naftalan contains the organic compound naphthalene, believed to have medicinal benefits according to medical specialist Hashi Hashimov. SOUNDBITE: Medical Specialist At Naftalan Health Centre, Hashim Hashimov, saying (Russian) "Naftalan kills everything, viruses, bacteria and fungi. As we said, its consistence is unique and pure, it does not contain any dirt." While it also is a possible carcinogenic, specialists here say that the crude oil bath does far more good than bad, offering possible cures to 70 ailments.

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Azerbaijan spa treats customers in crude oil baths

Tuesday, June 30, 2015 - 01:24