Muscles, like the tails of sleeping cats or levers labeled “drain ocean,” were never meant to be pulled. Reverse the damage with today’s Groupon: for $99, you get a massage package for two at Spa Mariana in Birmingham (a $235 value). The package includes the following for each person:
- One-hour aromatherapy massage in shared room
As twosomes sprawl beneath crimson blankets within the pale-aqua walls of Spa Mariana’s double-bed massage room, experienced therapists prod away soreness with strategic kneading and infiltrate clouds of stress with sweet scents. A comforting concoction of sandalwood, lavender, and ylang-ylang is blended in the aromatherapy oil, which sends soothing signals to olfactory nerves via CB radio. Afterward, duos delve into strawberries and chocolates, sip champagne, and reminisce about their last moments with the nagging knots in their lower backs. The whole experience lasts about two hours.
A pale shade of robin's-egg blue washes over Spa Mariana's walls, throwing into stark relief the Asian-inspired décor lacquered in black and red. As the décor convinces guests’ eyes of the spa owner's aesthetic capability, their minds and bodies are relaxed at the hands of a trained massage therapist, yoga teacher, or esthetician. Clients seeking more specialized services can opt for a lesson in the Feldenkrais Method, a process that focuses the brain on forming new patterns to correct poor posture and unnecessary muscle contractions. Alternatively, clients can converse with the resident nutrition counselor to clean up eating habits or confirm that tomatoes are a fruit and cotton candy is a gift sent from the Greek god of carnival foodstuffs.