All work and no wellness make Angelenos wound-up balls of stress. Take a time out for yourself with this list of restful places to relax and recalibrate.
Glow From Head To Toe
Gina Mari Skincare
9350 Wilshire Blvd
Beverly Hills, CA 90212
Most people spend hundreds on the outfits they wear, all the while neglecting the most important one of all: the skin that lies beneath. The new Birthday Suit treatment at Gina Mari Skincare is one of the most advanced body treatments in town, utilizing state-of-the-art technologies and treatments available, such as the TriPollar, which uses radio frequency to firm and contour. This revolutionary full body skin treatment addresses every complexion concern under the sun, including dehydration, dullness, signs of aging, cellulite, and environmental damage in five detail oriented steps. After 90-minutes of pampering, you will walk out refreshed, rejuvenated, and ready for your clothing optional close up.
Lunchtime Meditation Sessions
Prajnaparamita Kadampa Buddhist Center
2809 Ocean Park Blvd
Santa Monica, CA 90405
What appears to be an unassuming corridor tucked between two buildings hides an intimately sized volunteer-ran center that is rooted in the practices of Kadampa Buddhism. People from all religious backgrounds are welcome here to practice meditation, inner peace, and a calm approach towards the daily stressors of life. It’s appropriately situated across the street from a sea of office park complexes, welcoming overworked and underappreciated worker bees to a place of solace, making Tuesday lunch hour meditations (12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.) a great way to use their break time wisely. Classes are suitable for all levels and consist of guided meditations and talks that are accessible and relatable, offering practical tools that unlock the potential for positivity.
Garden-To-Glam Spa Treatments And Quarterly Wellness Retreats
The Ritz-Carlton Spa, Los Angeles
900 W. Olympic Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90015
A favorite respite for the denizens of LA, The Ritz-Carlton Spa offers luxurious pampering that begins with a signature champagne welcome that sets the tone for the duration of your visit. The spa features private relaxation rooms, eucalyptus steam rooms with cold plunge showers, a Couple’s Suite, full-service hair salon, spa boutique, and a glamorous co-ed Sanctuary room to relax before or after a treatment. Staying true to their urban roots, the spa offers signature and seasonal spa treatments, utilizing ingredients from their very own rooftop garden. Summer season treatments will be available through August 31st, like the decadent Peaches and Cream Body Polish. It features a peach extract infused sea salt scrub along with fresh picked mint for exfoliation, followed by a sweet tart lemon crème massage that will leave your skin feeling peachy keen.
Beginning on August 16th from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. The Ritz-Carlton Spa, Los Angeles will host the first of a quarterly series of wellness retreats designed to help guests decompress and find their center amongst the hustle and bustle of the surrounding city. Offerings will vary from one retreat to the next and can include poolside yoga sessions with renowned yogi Rachel Jackson, meditations, a selection of spa treatments, and a wholesome lunch to punctuate this comprehensively calming experience. Guests will feel like they’ve pressed their own personal reset button, and can extend this feeling of bliss with an overnight stay at a special rate. Call for additional details and booking information.
Take A Zen Inducing Stroll
Suiho-En The Japanese Garden
6100 Woodley Ave
Van Nuys, CA 91406
When visitors first set their sights on this sprawling oasis in the valley it’s an unexpected surprise. This six and a half acre haven is no mirage; it’s as authentic as they come. Known as Chisen-Kaiyushiki, which translates to “wet garden promenade” was designed by the late Dr. Koichi Kawana, a renowned Japanese garden designer whose work can be found in parks throughout the US. Here, the grounds feature a dry Zen meditation garden, a lake and other water elements, and an authentic tatami mat teahouse and tea garden.
Among the lush greenery and botanicals, you can find hand-carved stonework made by Japanese artisans. Even the local waterfowl are drawn to the serenity, adding to the peaceful beauty that makes it irresistible to slow down and take it all in. An interesting feature of gardens is the neighboring water treatment plant, which serves as an example of the positive applications for reclaimed water. No matter the time of year, the combination of botanicals, including cherry trees, wisteria, and lotus flowers offer a variety of shifting forms of beauty to appreciate all year round. The garden is open Monday through Thursday 11a.m. – 4:00 p.m. and Sunday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., excluding holidays.
Yoga With A View
Andaz West Hollywood
8401 Sunset Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90069
Summer time sets the stage for “Yoga With a View,” a seasonal series led by acclaimed instructor Jake Feree. Taking place on select Sundays each month through the end of summer, Feree will lead one-hour yoga classes set on the rooftop Panorama Lounge. Outdoor practices are one thing, but add in a breathtaking birds eye view of the city’s skyline, and you just may have an otherworldly experience. Yogis can also enjoy 15% off a bottomless brunch buffet at Riot House Restaurant, located on the first floor of the hotel. Everything from fresh squeezed juices to farm fresh eggs will be available to nourish hungry souls. There’s even an option to add-on mimosas or Bloody Mary’s to balance that Yin with some Yang. The final class of the series will take place on September 25th from 10 a.m. – 11 a.m. Visit the event page to view the full schedule and to reserve a spot.
Seek Serenity At The Shrine
The Self-Realization Fellowship Lake Shrine
17190 W Sunset Blvd
Pacific Palisades, CA 90272
Nestled in the hills near Malibu, the spectacular meditation gardens at Lake Shrine welcome visitors of all faiths and is a favorite place of many to read, reflect, or to just be in the moment. This 10-acre sanctuary features a natural spring-fed lake and cascading waterfall surrounded by gorgeous botanical gardens that koi fish, swans, ducks, and other wildlife seek refuge in. Cobblestone pathways line the lake, with vibrant flowers and other botanicals offering vibrant pops of color for your viewing pleasure. The structures on site are just as breathtaking. A pristine temple sits atop a hill, creating beautiful reflections in the lake below. You’ll even find a Gandhi World Peace Memorial that contains an enshrined portion of his ashes at the Court of Religions. The gardens and lake are open Tuesday through Saturday 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Sundays 12 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., excluding holidays.
EMF Detox Treatments And Group Relaxation Packages
Sea Wellness Spa
1910 Ocean Way
Santa Monica, CA 90405
In today’s technologically driven society, electromagnetic pollution is unavoidable. Whether it’s from smart phones to wireless networks, cell towers, computer screens, microwaves, and everything in between, we are literally surrounded by EMF. Constant exposure to electromagnetic fields is believed to create energetic imbalances in the body that result in cell mutations that are thought to result in cancer, among other health concerns. At the Casa Del Mar’s Sea Wellness Spa, guests can combat EMF pollution with a 90-minute Diamond Magnetic Body Ritual, a luxurious treatment that purifies the body, reduces stress, and increases energy. The treatment begins with a balancing of charkas with gems, followed by a luminous diamond dust mud application, ending in a massage that incorporates magnetic tools. For groups ranging from company retreats to bachelorette parties, mindfulness packages are available as a bonding approach to stress reduction. In partnership with wellness expert John Sahakian, the hotel offers AIRR (Automatic Integrative Relaxation Response) sessions, which provide a range of relaxation techniques and breathing exercises that lead groups to decompress together.
Joy Bitonio has the phrase “Joie de Vivre” tattooed on her shoulder, a reminder to enjoy life every single day. She has a voracious appetite for fun, adventure, food, good cocktails and works out like a madwoman to keep it all together. Check out what else she recommends around Los Angeles in the links below.