Husband-wife duo Mark and Marina Frost know what it's like. They saw each other from the opposite ends of a crowded room. They felt a pull toward one another. They knew. Since then, they've been committed not only to one another, but to helping other couples document their own stories through gorgeous wedding and engagement photography. Their expertly lit and strikingly composed shots capture moments big and little: a boutonniere waiting to be pinned on a lapel, the laughter of giddy bridesmaids, newlyweds clasping hands on the dance floor.
Their excitement for each couple and attention to the little things has earned them accolades such as The Knot's Best of Weddings award and Wedding Wire's Bride's Choice award, each for three years running. In addition to wedding-related photography, they also have a photo-booth-rental service for couples who want to remember what their guests looked like 50 years later, when they'll be uploaded to flying cars—the license of which will still only be earned after a four-hour wait at the DMV.
Muscle-kneading duo Linda Mehleisen-Kelly and Bryan Bauer eradicate back-bound aches with nine massage and energy-balancing services, calling upon years of training from Albany's own Center for Natural Wellness. Swedish and deep-tissue massage work kinks out of tired physiques, and reiki employs dexterous hands to clear away energy blockages and detoxify the body. Hot stones and bamboo sticks gently unwind tension with pulsating warmth, loosening even the most tightly wound of muscles and thawing out backs frozen from giving snowmen piggyback rides.
At Symetry Hair Design Studio, clients sip complimentary tea and coffee while surfing free WiFi to find examples of the cut they want. “I wanted the salon to be relaxing and inviting, and I think we’ve achieved that,” says owner Marilyn, whose 30 years of industry experience informs her leadership of the studio’s three other stylists, a trio that adds another 35 years of collective experience to the studio. During services, these stylists snip locks into classic styles or dabble in avant-garde ‘dos, employing Goldwell hair color to add blond highlights or tint hair the shade of lime that aliens interpret to mean “do not incinerate.” The studio’s aestheticians also wax away unwanted fuzz, and they brighten nails with OPI polish before formal arm-wrestling contests with the queen.
Brick walls and mirrors bordered with golden frames help create a warm, inviting atmosphere at Ecco Salon, where a team of stylist use their Goldewell- and Unite-approved skills to craft classic and edgy looks. The staff believes that if a hairstyle is to be truly great, it must be easily recreated at home, typically with high-end products sold in the salon as opposed to a series of wigs with the exact same cut. For those more interested in removing hair than styling it, Ecco also offers hair-removal services for areas such as the lip, bikini area, and back. Polishing off new looks, techs buff and trim nails during manicures and pedicures for men or women, ensuring clients look their best from the tips of their toes to the tops of their heads.
Jonathan Allen never gives the same massage twice. That's because this licensed massage therapist crafts a unique bodywork treatment for each client, drawing from Swedish and deep-tissue massage, neuromuscular therapy, and deep stretching to address each person's individual needs. Jonathan welcomes clients with all types of complaints, from sore muscles and chronic pain to general stress. Not only will he target those issues with a comforting massage, but Jonathan will also fill clients in on how their muscular system works and provide some stretching exercises to continue the healing at home.
Sitting in a red chair in front of a futuristic, diamond-shaped mirror at Blown Away, you might feel as though you're piloting a spaceship. The reality is far less stressful—a stylist is probably trimming your hair or combing it through with products from brands such as Sebastian and Alterna.
Despite the salon's name, the team specializes in far more than blowouts. They also apply highlights, curl hair with perms, and take down frizz with thermal straightening. There are even waxing services for the face and body, as well as mani-pedis with skin-softening paraffin wax.