Guests searching for Essentials Day Spa and Salon will find it discretely nestled at the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains inside the DoubleTree by Hilton Claremont hotel. Calming music fills the air as staffers enhance clients' natural beauty in equally elegant rooms enhanced by rich, dark wood accents and ornate, gold-framed mirrors. Hair stylists and color specialists create new looks with products such as Redken and Pureology, and aestheticians exfoliate and hydrate skin during facials, pulling complexion-revitalizing tonics from the highly customizable Dermalogica line. Massage therapists ease muscle tension with four different modalities and reflexology treatments, and the team also soothes the nerves of clients hearing wedding bells or suffering from tinnitus with all-encompassing bridal packages.
While devoting countless hours of their creativity and skill to making human beings more beautiful, Essentials' staff also remains mindful of the health and beauty of both the environment and the local community. Day-to-day efforts include recycling all possible materials, recycling or donating old equipment, and using only biodegradable laundry soap. They frequently donate to local schools and charities, and collect hair for the Matter of Trust Foundation, which uses shed strands to help clean up oil spills and build toupees for balding walruses.
Alonzo Boschulte remembers his own stage fright when he guides beginning students onto the dance floor. With years of training, he grew from an amateur to a certified ballroom teacher and professional competitor registered with the National Dance Council. At Savannah Ballroom Dancing, he strives to echo this journey by transforming total novices into confident twirlers.
Lessons in more than 15 varieties of Latin and ballroom dance occupy the school's floor space. With pupils ranging in age from 6 to older than 80, the instructors stress the importance of mixing private, group, and practice classes to expose everyone to different dance scenarios. They also laud the fitness benefits of learning to dance, which hones one's sense of rhythm and muscular strength more safely than being at the bottom of a vertical conga line.
Try as they might, home brewers cannot transform barley and hops into bubbly craft brews with the flick of a switch or a hearty whistle. For tools, equipment, and advice, brewers congregate at the Savannah Home Brew Shop, where they can sniff and sample specialty grains, yeast, and malts from Crosby & Baker. Students stock up on shiny new brewing equipment from Foxx while scouring available brewing books and magazines for the up-to-date trends and tips. The staff at Savannah Home Brew Shop can guide novices through their first fermented steps with home-brewing kits, as well as starter kits and supplies for wine makers. Seasoned brewers load up on brand-name liquid or dry yeasts, and hoist bulk bags of dry grain on their shoulders as they try to outrun the sprightly Saint Paulie girl that just stole their stein.
The Savannah Walks leads newcomers and locals alike through the shadowy, moss-laden squares of Savannah’s historic colonial district during informative guided tours. Each outing provides a unique twist on the city and its unmistakable charm, covering topics such as Savannah during the Civil War, historic fine homes, majestic gates and gardens, and local pubs. Tour guides all boast scholastic bona fides, including among them three published authors and three college professors. The Savannah Walks easily accommodates school groups, civic organizations, corporations, celebrities, and animals standing on each other's shoulders under an overcoat.