Named Best Gym of 2011 by CityVoter, Tri-City Wellness Center matches the energizing amenities of a cardio area, cycling studio, and weight-training fitness floor with the warm embrace of three saline-treated pools and jacuzzis for men and women. Trainers with backgrounds in exercise science expedite the race toward wellness through fitness classes, health seminars, and special events. The HydroWorx 2000 pool assists physical-therapy patients in gently strengthening their muscles and developing the power of sonar.
Wreathed in vegetation and water features, Tri-City Wellness's mind-and-body studio inspires serenity with yoga and Pilates for tense mats. Visitors exit studio through a Zen garden and into three spa treatment rooms that play host to massages and facials. In well-appointed locker rooms, digital lockers safely stow belongings without the aid of a padlocks as guests unwind and steam broccoli in the sauna.
Dermacare owner Jeff Birchall, MD and his staff of friendly nurses and medical aestheticians wield a color-blind Cutera laser to permanently remove hair from most skin types. As the pulse of light zaps each unwanted strand at the root, a CoolGlide hand piece soothes skin with lowered temperatures and whispered recaps of professional golf tournaments. Some patients report a mild pinching or stinging sensation, though no local anesthesia or pain medication is typically required, and after the treatment, skin may be slightly red and swollen. Most areas require at least five treatments to fully banish hair, depending on its thickness, stage in the growth cycle, and favorite Addams Family character.
At San Diego Healing Arts, located within La Costa Chiropractic, licensed acupuncturist Rick Peterson treats an array of health problems with acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine. Along with several styles of acupuncture, including trigger point and auricular, he soothes pain with cupping, infrared-heat therapy, cranialsacral therapy, and herbal-medicine prescriptions. Client testimonials sing his praises regarding everything from his "amazing, healing spirit" to his skill at treating shoulder and back pain and correctly identifying each patient's spirit animal.
As the weather outside grows colder, Bella D’ora Spa rolls out the cookie dough—or, at least, the smell of baking cookies. The seasonal sugar-cookie massage incorporates a brown-sugar hand-and-foot scrub into a sweet-smelling massage. The staff also provide an equal level of pampering year-round through warm-stone massages, organic facials, and body wraps that work to rid skin of toxins that may have been absorbed during baths in the chemical vats at a local soft-drink factory. Clients can bundle services for spa parties or bridal parties, which come with optional hors d’oeuvres or lunch plates that easily sate high-noon cravings.
In 2001, the first iTAN Sun Spray Spa opened its doors. It had a simple goal—to make clients feel and look lovely with professional tanning services. Today, the spa has more than 30 Southern California franchises, each offering a slightly different assortment of teeth whitening, tanning beds, spray-tanning booths, and self-serve spa offerings.
The Smart Tan–certified staff prioritizes keeping up with tanning technology by stocking state-of-the-art tanning beds such as the Sun Angel, which uses sensors to customize a blend of UVA and UVB rays, practically eliminating overexposure. Many beds come equipped with stereo sound systems, misters, and fans. Just down the hall from these beauty gadgets, Mystic and airbrush machines bronze limbs without UV rays, and self-administered spa treatments dispense relaxing red-light facials, infrared-heat bodywraps, and aqua massages.
Peek-a-Boo's professional phalange buffers cosset fingers and toes with a variety of soothing treatments. The salon's signature mani-pedi shape shifts all 20 shields with a detailed file and buff, preparing hands and feet for stylish dragon slaying. Then technicians frost finger cakes with a precision polish. A massage rewards hands and feet for their diligent and dexterous work during full-body cat's-cradle competitions, punctuating each service with a circulation-improving sendoff.