Shopping in West End

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The Hartford Courant keeps Connecticut's citizens up to date on state, regional, and national happenings with extensive news coverage supplemented by sections on sports, politics, and culture. The paper's in-depth news and editorial sections sharpen minds and widen perspectives, and Sunday's panoply of coupon savings slashes grocery bills and keeps restless shears from snipping away at hair. The sports section chronicles the triumphs and failures of professional athletes and local high-school football and soccer teams, and old editions can be shredded into pompoms for cheering on the UConn Huskies' basketball team. In addition to its fresh-off-the-presses news stories, the Hartford Courant promotes well-rounded leisure with listings of local entertainments and tips on cooking, health, and travel.

285 Broad Street
Hartford,
CT
US

Voted Best Florist/Flower Shop in 2010 and 2011, Lane and Lenge Florists commemorates special occasions with artfully arranged floral masterpieces. Nestled in a terra-cotta-style clay dish, the Serene Retreat arrangement embeds white hypoestes in a field of green dieffenbachia, spathiphyllum, ficus, and boston fern ($47.95). Romantics will enjoy the Rose Medley, a perennial cluster of roses, spray roses, and other fresh buds named after gardening enthusiast Pete Rose ($47.95+). The Citrus Kissed arrangement, a vibrant display of orange and coral roses in a slender gathering vase, celebrates sun-splashed summer months and can be used to ward off apparitions of February ($52.95+).

214 Park Rd
West Hartford,
CT
US

Curated by owner Pavel Krubitski, the collection of designer frames at Dependable Optical showcases the expert's 16 years of experience helping people find the exact glasses for their styles, face shapes, and budgets. His collection includes both designer and basic options, with many classic styles that help clients from being unfashionable when fads change or when squares are finally outlawed. To avoid blurry vision, staff opthamologist Donald Salzberg is on hand to give eye exams and prescribe lenses for clients whose prescriptions have changed.

836 Farmington Avenue
West Hartford,
CT
US

The courteous staff shares a wealth of fashion knowledge to help clients find vintage and contemporary apparel to complement their personal style or create completely original looks. Like a mother's stern warning, items from the shop's stock are rarely repeated to make room for a constant flow of new jewelry and clothing discoveries. Busy fashionistas may schedule private shopping appointments outside of regular business hours to receive one-on-one service. Closet-cleaning house calls summon Vice Versa Boutique's organizers to tidy up disheveled wardrobes and provide suggestions on future purchases before floating out the window with a vintage umbrella.

266 Park Road
West Hartford,
CT
US

Juicy tidbits of chocolate-dipped fruit arrive on the doorsteps of family and friends, presented in artful bouquets and gift boxes by the skilled fruit designers at Edible Arrangements, which has more than 1,100 franchises worldwide. Workers dip fresh fruit and sweets into gluten-free chocolate to create arrangements that resemble flowers in bloom. Customers can select from a variety of decorative containers, including vases, mugs, and sports- or holiday-themed containers that add a personal touch to the edible gifts.

282 Park Rd
West Hartford,
CT
US

The word meditation typically calls to mind a feeling of stillness and solitude. Matt DeMichele, however, believes in a shared meditative experience—one that takes place in the muscles as well as the mind. For him, massage is "meditation-in-motion," a way to acknowledge and address the tensions that have restricted one's potential. Since graduating from the Connecticut Center for Massage Therapy and earning his certification in therapeutic massage and bodywork, Matt has hoped to build this awareness in others and act as a conduit for their body's healing.

Each appointment at Shadow and Trees Massage Therapy begins with an in-depth evaluation. Matt logs information on his clients' recurring aches to better customize a mix of modalities, often blending elements of Swedish, orthopedic, and myofascial massage. Having studied with Aaron Mattes, founder of the active-isolated-stretching method, Matt also leads muscles through short, specific stretches to boost their range of motion. A combination of his active isolated stretching and massage can help combat the effects of past injuries, encouraging ease of movement without smearing elbow joints with grease.

402 Park Rd
West Hartford,
CT
US