Another Bay Area Affordable Gem

Piedmont Springs - Oakland, CA

Piedmont Springs - Oakland, CA

Starting a business, running a current business and in the midst of a family crisis. I was coming out of a very traumatic week and the businesses kept demanding and demanding - as they always do. The clock just keeps on ticking, doesn't it? 

Keeping up with my daily routine of coffee, news and e-mail in bed, my NYT Seven Minute Scientific Workout followed by stretches, hot shower and daily smoothie really helps keep me in control, (mostly) stress-free and refreshed, but sometimes I need to take a step back and realize I need a little more downtime to get me back in a calm state of mind. 

Yesterday I was intuitive enough to realize this was one of those times, but how many of us can really afford to go to a spa or local hotel to luxuriate in a hot tub, steam and sauna and then get a really worthwhile and long massage? Believe it or not, there really are some affordable options out there!

A few months ago, I posted about the super affordable (and lovely) Kabuki Springs and Spa in SF, but this time I didn't even have time to go into SF and needed to stick with Oakland. In comes Piedmont Springs. Just a couple of blocks from my house (lucky me!) I was able to make a same-day appointment. They have hot tubs for rent (yes! You get your own!), sauna and steam rooms and various options like massage and body treatments. I booked the minimum hot tub rental of half an hour which was meant to pre-relax my truly tight muscles, followed by a 75 minute massage (going more than an hour I think is essential. Would have done 90 minutes if it were available). All for under $100.00 less tip. Now THAT is a deal. Brennan picked me up, we went to dinner out on the Avenue and then went home to listen to music together. Today I am refreshed, relaxed and energized. Something I really didn't think was possible at this time in my life - especially this week!

The Healing Farm - Cultivating Practical Wellness


Cavallo Point Complimentary Wellness Lectures

My friend Jennifer Cooper will be our speaker and one of the wellness practitioners at the "Wellness and Yoga on the Ranch" Retreat with MALT October 25th. She asked me recently if I wanted to join her for a wellness lecture at Cavallo Point. I was unaware that Cavallo Point offers "Tuesdays to your Health"; a complimentary wellness lecture series the second Tuesday of every month with their resident integrative medicine practitioner, Dr. Brad Jacobs, MD. Informative and friendly Dr. Brad leads you through a lecture on a wellness topic in laymen's terms, offers advice on alternative solutions to whatever topic he's covering and ends with a Q&A. What a terrific deal! 

On the Tuesday we went to Dr. Brad's lecture, the weather was gorgeous so we met early and had a glass of wine on the porch of the bar/restaurant, then wandered over to the spa and sat in the lovely common area of the spa listening to Dr. Brad. The wall of windows was open and the birds were chirping outside. It was the beginning of the allergy season so the topic was on allergies. Dr. Brad offered advice on where you can go online to find out what the allergy "forecast" is, homeopathic remedies for allergy relief and good practical advice on what you can do around your home to help prevent allergic reactions in the first place. Super worthwhile and informative and certainly an inexpensive way to visit this lovely resort and spa and if you can swing it, why not get a spa treatment while you're there!

Cavallo Point Spa

Cavallo Point Spa

The Bath House Experience - The Way It's Supposed To Be!

"You American's don't know how to relax!"

As I luxuriated at the Kabuki bath house yesterday - somewhere around hour FIVE, I was reminded of a bath house experience in Capetown South Africa. I was traveling alone and decided I would check out a bath house I read about in my travel book. When I went in and tried to schedule an appointment time for a massage, I was confused when the woman at the desk told me I would get the massage when I was ready. 

She led me to the bath house where there was a sauna, steam room, cold plunge hot tub and lounging area where I found three Malay (local) women smoking cigarettes. So I got undressed and started the "circuit". After my first circuit I told the woman in charge - and seemingly the only person there - that I was ready for my massage. She then went on to scold me and said she's always amazed at "the americans". She said we didn't know how to relax. We are always in a hurry. She then told me I wasn't ready for my massage. The three women laughed and then welcomed me into their bathing experience. Although I didn't take them up on the cigarette smoking (that seemed a little counter-intuitive!) I had a joyful day lounging, loofahing and snacking with them and after about five hours, the woman in charge came in and told me I was now ready for my massage. 

Lately when I've gone to the Kabuki bath house, I've met my sister-in-law after work, we do the circuit for an hour or hour and a half and then leave to get in a gab-session and dinner. Although I love this time with my sister-in-law, I realized yesterday that once in a while, visiting the bath house on my own, staying for hours and truly relaxing is an incredible experience. Alone with my own thoughts, the sounds of trickling water and hushed whispers between friends and loving hands and warmth around my body is an incredible meditative experience - one that I hope I will do at least a couple of times a year. Someday I hope to structure my life in a way - The Healing Farm! - so that I can do this once a week. I can't even imagine what an incredible state of mind it will produce. Just six hours and I'm completely refreshed and inspired!

Kabuki Springs and Spa - One of the Best Deals in SF!

In one of my UC Berkeley business classes, we were told by our instructor to build in celebratory treats at certain milestones. Given the launch of The Healing Farm website today, I am taking the day off tomorrow to enjoy one of the best deals in San Francisco. The Kabuki Springs and Spa. What a super gorgeous bath house. An incredible deal. Their bath house day pass is only $25.00! You can't beat it. It's gorgeous, clean, has the full circuit - sauna, steam, cold plunge, hot tub and a lovely bathing area. When you need to get out of the chill of the bay area (like now!) it's the perfect cheap escape. I'm adding on some treatments as a bonus thanks to my dear brother and sister in-law who just gave me a gift certificate! Woo hoo and I can't wait!