John Whitman is more than a licensed massage therapist. He's also a massage-therapist instructor, licensed to help other therapists hone their healing skills. Patrons can benefit from Whitman's expertise at Opulent Massage, where he relaxes and soothes muscles with modalities such as trigger-point therapy and deep-tissue massage. Clients can also opt for cellulite massages and face-lift massages that improve appearances, or for pampering treatments such as foot massages that incorporate a fragrant, exfoliating salt scrub.
A wildly successful alternative to traditional day spas?its more than 300 locations blanket 36 states and half a dozen countries?Planet Beach Contempo Spa is a futuristic relaxation station where state-of-the-art machines administer all the spa and tanning services. These friendly automatons sometimes replace familiar treatments, as in the Luminous facial, a light-based service that delivers blemish-busting results similar to those of a conventional facial. But other equipment maps out new spa territory entirely: the Hydro-Derma Fusion chamber moisturizes the whole body with nutrient-rich steam in order to offset the effects of a dry climate or a rear-end collision with a salt truck. Other machines whiten teeth, spray tan skin, and massage muscles.
Planet Beach operates on a gym-style membership system, meaning that members purchase packages or pay flat monthly rates. As members spend more time at the spa, they get to know the helpful assistants who are always on hand to demonstrate how to use the equipment without activating its ability to cry.
M?lange is a beauty conglomerate?its myriad members specialize in everything from haircuts to lash extensions, facials, and dermal fillers. Within the Gallery is Priscilla of Bay Area Hair Restoration, who uses a low-light laser apparatus to jump-start hair follicles and reignite floundering cells without pain.
Most Popular Service: Swedish Massage
Minimum Age Requirement: 18
Staff Size: 1 person
Parking: Parking lot
Handicap Accessible: Yes
Pro Tip: Arrive 10 minutes early to fill out paper work.
Kaitlyn Confer, a massage therapist at Family Rehab and Medical Massage, says that she loves helping her clients relax and forget about their day-to-day problems for a while. And she does so with the aid of her talented thumbs, which skillfully employ multiple modalities of massage ranging from the more intense deep-tissue massage to Swedish massage to gentle chair massage, which is ideal for tense office workers and their tense office chairs. She says that the best compliment she's ever received from a client is one that comes up again and again?a repeat visit. "It tells me that I've done a good job and provided excellent service," she says.
In addition to massage, she and her fellow staffers also provide spa services, including fat-melting body wraps and mind-soothing aromatherapy.
Aches and pains evaporate as the hands of licensed massage therapist LeAnn McDonald sweep over muscles for Swedish or firm-pressure massages. While noses drink in aromatherapy through their nostril-mouths, LeAnn's targeted kneading unravels the knots in torsos that form when the topsail attached to the spine gets tangled in the rigging near the ribs. Clients may also request LeAnne's mobile spray-tanning services for off-site bronzing.
Because of licensed massage therapist Jalaine Hunter, it’s possible some astronaut felt more relaxed, calm, and collected during a stressful re-entry. That’s because two out of her five years of experience has been spent administering massages for NASA. Today, she draws from that experience and six types of massage, such as Swedish, hot stone, and trigger-point therapy, to pamper clients and untie their painful muscle knots.