It would be easy to devote weeks to exploring the Renaissance ClubSport's 75,000-square-foot facility—spending afternoons lounging poolside beneath the brilliant Orange County sun and taking meals at the sleek onsite restaurant. The club is an innovative fusion of fitness center, spa, and boutique hotel, complete with luxury suites, a 12,000-square-foot fitness center, and kids' club. Fitness seekers of all squares inhabit the athletic facilities, bustling away on ellipticals or playing rounds of racquetball. Others come for the more than 100 weekly fitness classes, which include yoga, Zumba, and extreme conditioning—a high-intensity combination of weight, cardio, and plyometric exercises. The fitness center is staffed by a team of expert trainers and nutrition coaches, who can advise clients on the best routes for reaching their health and wellness goals.
After workouts, guests unwind with a soak in the whirlpool before visiting the spa for a hot-stone massage or detoxifying mud body wrap. Then, it's on to the Citrus Fresh Grill for cocktails and a light dinner of Thai chicken lettuce wraps and grilled salmon. The club even offers a camp, which provides kids with recreational and educational activities while keeping them away from less constructive pursuits, such as watching TV or trying to convince their stuffed animals to do their chores.
Every salon claims that their tanning formula is one-of-a-kind. But at Unique Tan, it's actually true?owner Sherrie Lee Meredith developed it herself. Her signature spray-tanning blend, Unique Excellence, tints skin with a paraben-free solution of organic aloe vera, berry essences, and a firming serum to stave off the signs of aging. The formula also contains erythrulose, which can produce a longer-lasting bronze glow, and, because it's alcohol-free, helps keep skin moisturized and streak-free. The salon's Smart Tan?certified staff uses this in both automated booths and custom airbrushing sessions, which harness the steady hand of a tanning artist to ensure tans completely cover skin and finally even the score with haughty bronze statues.
The salon also offers traditional UV-tanning beds, which contain comfort-adding amenities such as air conditioning, aromatherapy, adjustable facial bulbs, and easy-to-follow voice instructions. Clients can enhance their tans with the salon's line of tan-accelerating products, which extend the life of each tan by keeping skin moisturized and healthy.
If you trained in massage therapy every minute of every day for two weeks straight, you still wouldn't be close to matching the amount of training completed by the therapists at the Knotstop. These licensed and certified professionals all boast a minimum of 500 hours of training?in fact, when they're not at the Knotstop, they're sharing their services at some of the most highly regarded spas and physical therapy facilities.
That level of expertise is part of what makes the Knotstop's massages so luxurious. Therapists provide more than 15 modalities ranging from therapeutic to relaxation massage, eliminating the tension that can build up after a long day of remembering action-movie scenes. But the Knotstop doesn't stop at massages. It also offers customized facials, peels, and waxing, each of which uses organic products for a relaxing, natural spa experience.
Josh Chen of Vantis Therapeutic Massage began his career as an acupuncturist, regularly incorporating massage into treatments when humming whale songs didn't work. When Chen studied acupressure under a Taiwanese master, something clicked. Combining the techniques he learned in acupuncture and acupressure, as well as methods from tai chi, Chen was able to create his own massage style.
In the Chinese tradition, Chen performs each massage over clothing and without oils. He blends Western modalities such as deep tissue with Eastern tui na and acupressure to fit the client's needs. His relaxing studio is decorated with live plants, minimalist furniture, and earth tones.
You might think that standing up while you tan would cause an unnaturally darkened scalp, but this never happens at Hollywood Tans. That's because their arsenal of signature stand-up tanning booths create an always even, natural-looking glow in as little as eight minutes. With more than 140 locations nationwide, the chain?s salons?each a veritable bronze mine for pale bodies?can also bronze physiques with Mystic Tan?s Instant Tan, a sunless formula that does not contain dangerous UV rays or infectious California boy-band harmonies. The tone-savvy staff can also help customers choose the instant-tan formula best suited to them, matching the bronzing serums to the each person's skin tone, type, and ideal look.
At this bright venue equipped with floor-to-ceiling windows, patrons sip beer and nibble pretzels during various salon and spa services geared exclusively toward men. Expert staffers can cut and color hair, trim nails during mani-pedis, wax away unwanted fuzz, and soothe muscles during massages. Meanwhile, patrons stay entertained with a 46-inch flat-screen television as well as a foosball table with eight rows of foosmen sporting frosted tips.