With experience in cosmetology and business management, Octavia McDougle helps aspiring beauticians of all sorts forge new career paths as hairstylists, barbers, cosmetologists, and massage therapists. At Beauty Anatomy Institute of Cosmetology and Wellness, Octavia and her staff guide students in immersive programs that combine preparatory theory with hands-on practical application. Once they've learned the ropes, protégés get to practice services on real-life clients before they earn their licenses and find employment.
Students train on a 4,100-square-foot campus replete with four clinic areas and salon-exclusive products typically found only in premier salons and Walt Whitman’s finely manicured beard. Beauty Anatomy Institute also runs an outreach program to provide disadvantaged teenagers with scholarships, workshops, and grooming services to further boost their self-esteem.
Upon arriving at Body & Soul Retreat's tranquil location, clients cocoon themselves in the Meditation Room, a candle-dotted space that swirls with the aromas of incense and essential oils and readies them for their upcoming spa session. Participants have their pick of a plethora of services, from specialty manicures and waxing services to deep-tissue massages and fruit-laced facials doled out by licensed and trained therapists. Retreat packages that stretch across several hours steep customers in deep relaxation, and private spa parties fete groups with a custom menu of modalities and the permission to blast whale songs until the neighbors call to complain.
Chi Spa’s more than 20 licensed massage therapists are experts in their craft and can easily pull massage techniques from Western and Eastern modalities and seamlessly integrate them into a single session designed to address their clients' problem areas. The therapists owe their versatility to their training in Thai massage at the Wat Po Buddhist Temple in Bangkok, Thailand. The look and feel of the distinctive Thai relaxation retreats followed them back to Chi Spa, which is decorated with elaborate woodcuts and statues imported from Thailand. The treatment rooms preserve a modern feel; some even have private showers in which guests can rinse off before or after their treatments. In addition to familiar modalities such as Swedish and hot stone, therapists can knead muscles with barefoot ashiatsu massage or the 200-year-old Thai Ceremony massage, originally intended to relax returning warriors who’d carried their horses home.
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Mark Lohmann's interest in health began when he witnessed its absence. As a child, he saw family members struggle with debilitating disease, and he began to wonder about ways he could restore their health. When he grew older and hopped on a track to become a yacht chef, Lohmann explored nutrition and often massaged his own shoulders to cope with "the long grueling hours spent on [his] feet for some two decades." When his parents' ailing health called him home in 2003, Lohmann began formally training in bodywork—starting with Active Isolated Stretching—before opening Planet Massage on Las Olas Boulevard in 2005.
After almost a decade at that location, Planet Massage relocated to a historical home in the SOLO district that has more than three times the space of the original location. But the ample space isn't the only upgrade; Planet Massage's new urban oasis is even more equipped to relax clients with its lush outdoor bamboo and mango gardens and free parking. Plus, the house is located on a tree-lined neighborhood street, blocks from the beach and within view of the Downtown skyline and any monsters trying to destroy it.
The new spa still soothes bodies with medically based bodywork that often combines multiple modalities and products, as well as with foot massages, heat packs, and pain-relieving Biofreeze treatments. But it also has added a variety of new pampering treatments to take place in the new treatment rooms.
A visitor to Diamante Day Spa won?t be hurting for options: between the spa?s 20 different massage styles and 18 distinct facials, clients could be forgiven for having a hard time knowing which treatments would benefit them most. That?s why it?s fortunate that holistic practitioner and spa founder Tara Darlene Diamant? Canhos is not only a skilled massage therapist, but also an experienced lifestyle coach and spiritual consultant. Canhos and her staff utilize this experience to help clients devise the perfect array of treatments. Specialty services encompass mainly Eastern holistic healing practices?chakra balancing, yoga nidra meditation, Tibetan reflexology?which is why it?s fitting that the spa is also home to a zen lounge area complete with fresh fruit, organic herbal teas, and no howler monkeys.
Dr. Patty’s Dental Boutique and Spa, which references the nickname given to her by her patients, and bills itself as "South Florida's First Dental Spa", doesn’t take it personally that many of her patients don’t like the dentist. Instead, Dr. April Patterson does what she can to help. “There are about 30 to 40 million Americans that suffer from dental anxiety,” she said during a segment on Good Morning America. “I wanted to do everything I can to make those clients feel like they are not at the dentist.” So she bolstered her routine dental services—preventative care, implants, bridges, whitening, crowns, and braces—with a full spa menu. The result is Dr. Patty’s Dental Boutique and Spa, which references the nickname given to her by her patients. And it’s not just the soothing, spa-like atmosphere that calms clients, she says, “A client … coming in to have their dental veneers done [can] come in an hour early, and they can have a facial or a massage while their Valium kicks in… they come in to start their dental procedure and they’re nice and relaxed.” Her aestheticians adhere faux eyelashes to lids, arch eyebrows, and artfully apply permanent makeup. Dr. Patty also administers facial rejuvenation treatments such as Botox, Juvéderm, Dysport, and more. Additional services include invigorating lemon-scented warm towel service, silky paraffin-wax treatment for hands, temple massage therapy, refreshing cucumber eye presses, and personalized movie and music selections. Clients can also enjoy access to a spa locker room with many amenities such as complimentary robes, slippers, and a private shower area available for use before and after treatments.