Heidi Lamar didn't know much about spas when she first purchased Spa Lamar. As she explained to reporters from Skin Inc., "not coming from a spa background, there were things I didn't know I couldn't do." Unhindered by industry conventions or previously fixed ideas, Heidi set about filling her 14,000-square-foot spa with innovative amenities—from a luxurious waterfall-fed pool to an onsite yoga and dance studio. She also cultivates locals instead of the typical resort crowd, banishing cacti from the decor in favor of a Caribbean-style ambiance that, as she told the Arizona Republic, caters to those who already live in Arizona and want to get away to a tropical island. Today, her media-lauded spa is the largest privately owned spa in Scottsdale and is frequented by locals, including members of the Phoenix Suns Dancers.
Before treatments that include massages, acupuncture, mani-pedis, and facials, guests garbed in fluffy complimentary robes duck into the steam room. They sample wholesome lunches and fruit plates from the tropical tea bar and relax in the sauna while waiting for a haircut or warm algae wrap. Sunbathers float around the pool on loungers, whereas others simmer in a bubbling whirlpool. Unlike many traditional spas, Spa Lamar is completely coed, making it an ideal place for couples that are on a first date or permanently trapped together inside a horse costume with a broken zipper.
Occasionally, Mood Swings Aveda Salon and Skin Spa moonlights as a studio. Sometimes camera-toting members of the media stop by to check out this season’s trends or new hair products. Other times, models strut or flutter from imaginary wind gusts during Urban Tribe and other fashion photo shoots. Perhaps most importantly, Mood Swings periodic studio space hosts educational seminars for its talented team of stylists, who learn advanced tips in coloring and other techniques from Aveda professional instructors.
This commitment to the art and science of hair justifies Arizona Foothills magazine selecting Mood Swings Aveda Salon and Skin Spa as its best salon of 2011. The praise coincides with that from AZCentral.com, which named Mood Swings Best Trendy Salon for “translating cool, avant-garde styles into wearable, everyday looks.” Stylists craft these looks with natural, plant-based products from Aveda, and supplement the service with pampering that can include a complimentary scalp massage, hand facial, and finishing touches to clients’ makeup. A comprehensive services menu treats the entire body, ranging from natural skin products that rejuvenate complexions to pedicures that soothe feet with a dual-jet therapeutic whirlpool after unsuccessful attempts to walk barefoot across a hot charcoal grill.
Created by renowned fitness expert Jaime Brenkus, the man behind the 8 Minute Abs workout videos, the Slim & Fit approach to wellness is much more than a diet. Certified Slim Coaches and Fit Trainers helm weekly weigh-ins and exercise sessions, slinging encouragement that’s grounded in their commitment to cultivating permanent behavioral change. Fueled by a passion to help others achieve their goals, Cathy Lombardo, along with her husband Chris, decided to bring Brenkus’s philosophy to their community. After cutting the ribbon, a ceremony that Brenkus himself attended, Cathy got busy putting her experience as an all-American track-and-field athlete to use guiding others toward overall well-being.
In addition to the hunger-curbing six meals a day that participants enjoy on the 4-2 Slim Plan, exercisers burn calories during Brenkus's Fitness Fusion workout via resistance, cardio, and strength training. The system's patented portion-control plate demonstrates the appropriate amount of food to eat or store in second stomachs for the approaching winter months.
A wildly successful alternative to traditional day spas—its more than 300 locations blanket 36 states and half a dozen countries—Planet Beach is a futuristic relaxation station where state-of-the-art machines administer all 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 in order 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.
An award-winning Aveda concept salon, 'Ohana Aveda Salon and Spa welcomes guests into a rejuvenating oasis where stylists refresh looks with Aveda’s fragrant, plant-derived products. Each stylist that joins the 'Ohana team undergoes advanced training in the studio’s Pure Protégé program, where salon educators lead them through workshops covering everything from technical cuts and texturizing treatments to product recommendation and four-part vocal harmonies. Once they’ve ascended to the role of mane master, stylists are free to dish out the salon’s signature Aveda services, including cuts enhanced with custom head, neck, and hand treatments and complimentary makeup touchups. The salon also has documented its styling savvy in print, doing hair and makeup for photo shoots in So Scottsdale! magazine.
Kalologie 360 Spa's expert beauty gurus offer a first-class selection of pampering services, earning the franchise a spot on Elle magazine's 2008 list of Top 10 Beauty Boutiques. The staff exfoliates faces with more than 10 varieties of facials and peels, using the boutique's own line of products custom formulated from medical-grade ingredients free of parabens and sulfates. Therapists also treat clients with massage modalities such as Swedish, shiatsu, and deep-tissue, as well as waxing treatments that use specially formulated hard and soft wax for all areas of the body. Airbrush spray tans round out the menu of services, leaving bodies with a bronze hue similar to that achieved by bathing in a tub of melted-down doorknobs.
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