Kristen Melanson believes in the power of energy to affect our daily lives. She believes that both positive and negative energy affect us at the cellular level, and so she practices energy medicine to help correct that negative energy. In her calming studio, Kristen—a certified reiki master—helps direct healing energy toward her clients by placing her hands over specific points on the body. In this way, she helps clients with everything from chronic pain to emotional trauma, and assists the body in healing itself.
?Who says northerners can?t do ?cue?? asked Boston magazine as it crowned Blue Ribbon BBQ on its Best of Boston list in 2011. Whether dished out from its two brick-and-mortar locations or its trailer, the restaurant?s tender meats are lauded for their slow-cooked, pit-smoked tenderness, infused with the flavors of hickory and oak hardwoods. Blue Ribbon dishes out memphis dry-rubbed ribs, Texas-style beef brisket, and Kansas City?style burnt ends dubbed ?absolutely addictive? by Boston. Locally made hot-smoked sausage and Mr. Whitner?s smoked-turkey-breast sandwiches help round out the menu alongside Southern sides such as dirty rice, potato salad, and corn bread. Blue Ribbon BBQ also caters special events and sells bottles of its most popular sauces so guests can enhance their grandmother?s recipes or add flavor to their super-soaker fights.
It was the early 1980s, and after devoting about a decade of her life to fitness, Zayna Gold felt like her body was beaten up. Over time, she began noticing that her high-intensity gym workouts were hurting her body as much as—if not more than—they were helping it. Her husband, Clark, was having the same problem. An avid weightlifter and runner, he found the physical wear and tear was starting to prevent him from maintaining his physique. Zayna recalled teaching Pilates early on in her career, and how it worked her entire body with low-impact movements. She returned to the lengthening and strengthening classes, and by 1989, she and Clark founded Boston Body Pilates.
Their mat, equipment, and barre classes each call upon low-impact stretches and resistance moves that strengthen the core, elongate muscles, and promote overall muscle tone. Zayna's signature program, Brand New Body, challenges students to complete 30 Pilates or barre classes over 2–3 months; and upon completion, they may notice significant changes to their figure. The schedule also includes spinning classes, in diverse variations such as Zen Spin and Spin Bootcamp. In any class, Zayna and her large team of instructors inspire their students to establish a mind-body connection, helping them to feel both physically and mentally stronger, much like solving a crossword puzzle carved in stone.
Marisa Fanelli's first close-up encounter with Western medicine was at the age of 17, when her mother fell ill, and it was riddled with disappointments. Misdiagnoses, ineffective medications and surgeries, and most importantly, doctors' apathy toward her mother's personal well-being, discouraged Marisa. But her negative experience with modern medicine culminated in something positive: an exploration of acupuncture. At Healing Point Therapeutics, Marisa not only uses acupuncture to heal her clients mentally and physically, but she also offers other treatments in the same vein. These treatments include hypnotherapy—which she sometimes blends with acupuncture—cupping, and Gua Sha, a massage-like practice.
Tiffany Sarkissian wasn't happy with the accessibility of the workout regimens she was teaching, so she invented her own. Combining her three passions—yoga, ballet, and core-strengthening—she created "floga," a gentle workout suitable for students of all fitness levels. Backed by her staff of certified instructors, Tiffany leads pupils through floga's series of Vinyasa yoga postures, stretches, and balance exercises—all of which are designed to boost core strength, elongate muscles, and improve flexibility. Each workout plays stimulating music and, like a pratfall down the stairs and into your bedroom, concludes with a tranquil resting period. The instructors also lead lively Zumba sessions and outdoor boot-camp classes.
Outfitted with spas and treadmills, Pooch Hotels are nearly the same as human accommodations, with one key difference: your dog might get a tummy-rub with their turndown service. These venues were all designed by dog-lovers whose main priority was canine comfort, regardless of the length of each guest's stay.
Dogs on daycare visits, for example, are sorted by size and temperament before entering one of multiple play areas. Monitored by human "Pack Leaders," they socialize amidst toys, treats, and wading pools at select locations, or run outside if the weather and facilities permit. Those who have booked a room for the night can relax in a private suite, outfitted with a glass door rather than bars. These range from standard to presidential and even palace suites?rooms outfitted with luxury bedding and flat-screen televisions tuned to dog-friendly programming. Customers might also schedule a spa appointment for their pooch, choosing from services such as baths, "pawdicures," and even facials.
The hotels pursue peace of mind for owners as actively as they pamper their dogs. Certain locations have installed web cameras in the play areas and suites, enabling people to check in on their pets and guilt them about the time they napped instead of writing a postcard. Staff remain on-hand at all times to welcome newcomers and care for already-snoozing pups.