Essentials Massage & Facials' Spa professionals relax weary bodies with a collection of therapeutic services. Soothing massages employ a collection of kneads, strokes, and manipulations to reduce tension and disentangle body knots, with luxurious add-ons such as paraffin treatments and aromatherapy. The skin-savvy techs also rid frames of unwanted stubble with waxing services, smooth out wrinkles with chemical peels and microdermabrasion, and soften countenances with professional skincare products during facials.
From the soft pillows on the wicker furniture to the luxurious drapes that conceal private treatment rooms, April Beauty Time and Health Spa is clearly a place intended for relaxation—for guests. The spa's aestheticians, however, are models of productive activity, working to beautify clients' faces and skin with waxing and skincare services or to rid bodies of excess fat cells with contouring treatments.
Helmed by ambidextrous hairdresser Ben De Cordova, who garnered a first-place Green Award at the 2010 International Fantasy Hair Competition, Salon De Cordova soothes strands and shoulders with passionate attention to artistry and detail. Wig whisperers wield well-sharpened scissors to tame overgrown dos (a $40 value), releasing bad dreams that have been trapped in there for months. After blowing bristles smooth and dry, a soothing shiatsu massage (a $35 value) squeezes stress from the client's scalp and neck, as well as squeezes rainwater from their shoulder pads. Heads depart Salon de Cordova silkier, slightly lighter, and accentuated with a relaxed smile.
A wildly successful alternative to traditional day spas—its more than 300 locations blanket 36 states and half a dozen countries—Planet Beach Contempo Spa 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.
Products by Paul Mitchell, Redken, and Nexxus are only an arm’s length away from the talented stylists at Universal Hair Studio, where owner Cheryl Lynn and her team dole out a laundry list of hair-care services. Both men and women can stop by the studio for a quick cut or color treatment, and men can stick around for a hot shave.
The team also treats clients to a range of styling services, from smooth and sleek relaxers and Afro blowouts to press and curls, gel twists, and design braids. Women who yearn for floor-sweeping locks a la their favorite movie star or willow tree can ask for full or partial extensions.
Planet Beach is a futuristic relaxation station where state-of-the-art machines administer all the services. These friendly automatons facilitate everything from hydro massages and oxygen therapy to spray tanning and luminous facials, as well as Planet Beach's signature take on tantastic UV therapy. Each machine is designed for a specific service, which makes it the ultimate expert and keeps it from developing the ability to cry. Advanced spa services, such as hydro-derma fusion, sauna time, hydro massage ($40 per session), and luminous facials ($40 per session) provide opportunities for sweating, moisturizing, and photoskinthesis.