This plastic smart card kicks loose change to the curb with $15 of preloaded money, which can be used on parking meters and Smart Bicycle Lockers across the city. Drivers simply insert the ParkCard until their initial balance flashes four times. The card then negotiates a gentlemen’s accord with the hermitical meter dweller, agreeing to buy time in 25-cent increments that gradually increase until the desired amount is displayed. As soon as the curbside patron removes the card, the transaction is complete and the amount shown is subtracted from the card’s balance. Unused time can be credited back to your ParkCard by using the same method upon return. ParkCards may be refilled at Pay-by-Space machines.
Pure Pleasure Shop’s friendly proprietors, mother-and-daughter-team Amy and Janis Baldwin, stock their award-winning boutique with sensual and safe adult novelties. Among lingerie options, stay-up sheer lace-top thigh-high stockings with back seam stay firmly in place without the assistance of garter belts ($9.95), and fishnet thigh highs ably enmesh legs and guppy tattoos in their nylon and spandex webbing ($6). The edible Good Clean Love Origins oil softens and warms skin with 100% vegan ingredients and no paraben or petrochemicals ($19.95). As they flicker, Afterglow massage candles ($28 each) liquefy into a massage oil that can lubricate bodies for intimate encounters with a lover or turnstile.
Cruzio is Santa Cruz County's largest and most reliable Internet service provider. Established in 1989, Cruzio offers multi-gigabit fiber Internet, business-grade wireless Internet, DSL, email, website hosting, hands-on classes, computer care, and an on-site colocation data center and coworking facility called CruzioWorks.
Sick of buying expensive supplies and having to adhere to a class schedule just to create art, Jennifer Kurtz Rubin started the first of her chain of ceramic lounges in 1993. Each Petroglyph Ceramic Lounge is designed as a social and creative space, one that all customers can use to express themselves artistically while catching up with friends. The lounge throws open its doors for both kids and adults to decorate clay bisque pieces, such as mugs and salad bowls, with a bounty of colorful supplies, never worrying about cleanup afterward. Once they’re complete, the art pieces are glazed, fired, and ready for pickup in a few days. And because artists can stay for a whole afternoon or just 30 minutes, the lounge even grants a few moments of creativity to patrons with the busiest schedules. The company also goes beyond casual art making to host parties for kids and adults, in which they can bring in live music, serve food, and train scoops of ice cream to paint their own bowls.
Many dentists use a UV light to whiten their patient’s teeth, but only the beauty experts at Twilight Teeth reasoned that clients could use the same light to tan their skin while whitening their teeth. The UV lights of their tanning beds shine on bodies and illuminate smiles, comfortably held open by a mouth guard and coated in gel. The gel activates under the light and contains 25% peroxide—among the highest concentrations in the industry. Since the gel is painted on instead of held in place by a whitening tray, it can brighten high beams with minimal discomfort. Clients who can’t stay at the tanning salon can take home a kit, which substitutes a portable UV light or a mason jar filled with baby stars.
Granted six Gold Awards in 2011 by Santa Cruz Weekly, Stripe Design Group provides a halfway house for one-of-a-kind handpicked goods, including locally made edibles, international houseware finds, and vintage furnishings. Liven up tea time with a robin’s-egg blue creamer pitcher ($16), crumpet-coating Serendipity jam ($10) created by a mother-daughter team, and the scandalous news that you’re switching to coffee. The Magellan’s Voyage necklace ($25), constructed from a vintage compass, grants exclusive access to due north, and the white ceramic egg rack ($14) stylishly houses a dozen eggs as they wait to fulfill their omelet destinies.
The tags of the garments that hang inside Twist read like a chic fashion show's guest list: designers such as Stella McCartney, Roberto Cavalli, and Vera Wang often make an appearance. These upscale offerings haven't gone unnoticed: in 2013, the consignment boutique won a Santa Cruz Weekly Gold Award. In addition to apparel and accessories for women and men, The shop's buyers also stock locally made jewelry, candles, and artwork. For the equestrian set, there's a specialty section of riding gear and Frye boots.