A few wisps of smoke from an extinguished candle hang in the air, along with the lingering fragrance of aromatic oils and the soft strains of jazz or nature sounds. One of the licensed massage therapists at Mona Lisa's Massage & Wellness has completed another relaxing session, easing muscle tension and stress with modalities such as hot-stone therapy, pregnancy or sports massage, or reflexology. The center's practitioners operate in an intimate and tranquil four-room suite complete with a mani-pedi station. In the couples room, pairs enjoying a Yin + Yang massage nosh on chocolate-covered strawberries and discuss how to install electric handlebar warmers on a tandem bike.
The crew exfoliates skin with coconut-lime-scented scrubs and detoxifies bodies with wraps that include a session in the steam sauna. They also aim to clear complexions with 10 different anti-aging facial treatments and peels.
Tell us about your business.
The intention of my work is to follow the recipe of Ida Rolf, who is the founder of Structural Integration/Rolfing. The goal of SI is to align the body into vertical and horizontal planes by slowly manipulating the fascia layer.
What sets your business apart?
There are many different modalities within the massage profession and in my personal experience working with the fascia creates the greatest overall, long-lasting change. It is a slow body stretch in which no lotions or oils are used.
What inspired you to start or run this business?
I have been blessed with the hands and spirit of a healer and by giving the gift of this type of massage, I can give of myself for the greatest good!
What is your most popular offering?
Connective Tissue Massage (CTM) in which I work on the most superficial layer of the fascia as I move broader bands of that fascia. This is a great place to start for the client because it introduces the SI work more gradually, but I would always recommend the client evolve to the SI ten series.
What kind of training/expertise do you have?
After massage school four years ago I had 600 hours. Then, I went on to train in Miami for two years running and I have accumulated 1,030 hours with my sole intent being the study of SI. My heart is truly wrapped around this study. It is a magnificent modality and I'm quite proud to be in the lineage of Ida P. Rolf.
A cream shag rug, exposed steel beams, and zebra-print ottomans impart a funky feel to the interior of Co. Capelli Hair Salon, whose grand opening attracted the likes of Carson Kressley of Queer Eye for the Straight Guy. An expert in hair extensions, owner Sam Parker handpicked a multitalented staff of stylists to enhance clients' locks with glue-free Klix extensions or trim and highlight existing hair. Med-spa treatments such as Botox, chemical peels, and laser treatments leave skin smooth and glowing, and massages help muscles to unwind.
Reneaux Day Spa is all about pampering their guests. Whether it's through a new haircut, a Shellac manicure, or a deep-cleansing facial, guests leave looking and feeling great. Wild-lavender body scrubs use grape seeds and sandalwood essential oils to smooth and exfoliate the skin, whereas thai lemongrass body masks relieve achy joints. Physiques are further pampered with seven types of massages, which work to relax clients and relieve aches, pains, and slipknots.
Although Pro Massage Health Solutions' licensed massage therapists are each trained in multiple modalities, they all specialize in one thing: customizing sessions to suit their clients' needs. They accomplish a truly tailored experience by mixing and matching strokes from their arsenal of approaches. For clients who want a relaxing visit, the staff may focus on Swedish maneuvers. Deep-tissue kneading and the sports modality, alternatively, may be in order for those afflicted with aches and pains. Therapists also specialize in treating chronic pain and discomfort with myofascial trigger-point therapy, which works to ease bodies at specific points of tension. The therapists happily cater to people with hectic schedules. They offer late appointments and readily render on-location massages by visiting patients’ homes, offices, hotels, and hotel pillow forts supported by stacks of room-service food.
Inside this relaxing oasis, a team of beauty experts pampers clients from head to toe with invigorating treatments for the skin, body, and hair. Aestheticians tailor facials to counter skin-specific woes, keeping faces smooth with add-ons such as enzyme masks, glycolic peels, or waxing. During massage sessions, therapists soothe muscle aches with Swedish, sports, or four-handed massage therapy, which enlists the help of either two therapists or one well-trained dog. Split ends hit the floor in the salon, where talented stylists turn out freshly cut, colored, and styled coifs. Beyond these three pillars of beauty, Cottage Spa also tends to nails with a coat of vibrant polish or long-lasting gel.