Close your eyes. Picture a country cottage surrounded by rose gardens. Now walk in and lie down. A team of massage therapists stands at the ready to apply warm towels to your sore muscles. Just as the first whiff of lavender and peppermint reaches your nose, you feel their practiced hands press down on your knotted muscles and overworked joints. Or maybe you feel warm and soft as a layer of gentle exfoliants, botanical body butters, and moist towels wrap your body to soothe and nourish your skin. After what feels like hours, you slowly rise from the table, muscles loose and skin soft. Before you can say thank you, you're handed a free bottle of spring water to wash down a selection of sweet chocolates. The scent of aromatherapy oils fades away as you leave the spa haven, and the smell of fresh roses ushers you outside. The country opens up in front of you. Now open your eyes.
It's not a dream. The quaint country cottage surrounded by rose gardens, the gentle massage therapists, the free chocolates—it's all very real at Blue Monarch Massage, where bodies benefit from the mother and daughter team’s years of collective experience delivering pain-relief and relaxation. The duo’s attention to detail turns simple spa services into full-blown, luxurious experiences with amenities such as free chocolates, hot-towel applications, and aromatherapy oils.
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 of 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 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.
A.R.T. Massage Body Spa takes its name from the three adjectives that describe each one of its services: advanced, relaxing, and therapeutic. The staff promises their clients will enjoy the latest techniques designed to both soothe the mind and relieve specific needs. Massage therapies thwart tension and improve range of motion, and custom spray tans give skin a sun-kissed glow without having to find a sun-size box of chocolates first. Using Éminence Organic products, the staff cleanses skin and fights signs of aging during signature, cleansing, or organic express facials with blends of organic herbs, fruits, and vegetables rich with nutrients.
Set inside a 1920s bungalow, the spa decorates each private room in modern decor with subtle touches, such as finger bells and aromatics, that appeal to all senses. Before or after treatments, patrons can peruse a selection of clothing, candles, handbags, and jewelry inside the spa’s retail area, which also sells the Éminence Organic skincare line.
Tina Zillmann, Skin Rejuvenation Clinique's owner and director, espouses a firm belief that "education is the key to success." This applies equally to the clinic's employees and clients—Zillmann's beauty pros undergo regular professional development and reprogramming to stay abreast of the latest treatments, technologies, and products. As for her clients, Zillmann ensures that they know the nuances of each service, from the steps involved to expected results and aftercare. The spa divides its treatments into four categories—facials, body services, salon services, and hair removal—that each work to rejuvenate appearances. Skincare services incorporate products by Advanced Rejuvenating Concepts, which are also available for purchase. Zillmann had a hand in creating the line, developing complex, clinical-grade cleansers, lotions, and balms for specific skin types.
Medical aesthetician Monica Pacheco and Drs. Stan Zebrowski and Irene Blaess aim to make a trip to the dentist's office something to anticipate with a smile during general-dentistry and cosmetic-dentistry appointments or aesthetic spa services. A complimentary sugar scrub and paraffin hand treatment helps soothe every patient and client to leave hands soft enough to participate in unarmed pillow fights. Teeth-whitening treatments or porcelain veneers rehabilitate tarnished grins, and a variety of facials and chemical peels helps countenances return to healthy, youthful states. Clients enjoy the fragrant candles and soothing music as a gently gurgling aquarium displays fish who lazily swim toward the light of newly radiant enamel.
The staff at Bodique Mind and Body Wellness takes a holistic approach to well-being that aims to bring euphoria to both the mind and body. Favoring all-natural, hypoallergenic products, the licensed massage therapists and wellness professionals nurture visitors with services that range from massages to detoxifying body wraps and baths. To further promote holistic living, Bodique's team posts inspiration and resources on its Health Tips webpage; tips range from nutritional advice to recommendations for documentaries such as Forks Over Knives and Spork: A Love Story.