Expert answers to your spa questions
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By Susie Ellis
March / April 2007
Q You spoke about spirituality in spas a month ago or so. Do you know of any Christian spas? Many spas appear to have a New Age agenda.
A Some spa-goers prefer Christian teachings to New Age ones, and St. Joseph Institute, which opened two years ago in western Pennsylvania, was the first spa to respond to that need. It's founded on Christian principles, though it's ecumenical in attitude and offers holistic treatments and programs. Its existence reflects the trend of spas that cater to market niches and at the same time create programs that can be embraced by people of all faiths. I've also noticed that many spa-goers are becoming more comfortable with separating elements of their spa experience from their religious beliefs. As a Christian, for example, I enjoy yoga for the stretching and the stress reduction without sharing the instructor's spiritual views. And while walking a labyrinth has lost its original religious significance, many spa-goers today still find it to be a spiritual experience.
Q I'm currently drawing up plans to put a large infrared sauna, steam room, and workout area in my home. How can I ensure a first-class sauna or steam-room installation?
A Get a recommendation from a trade association for saunas and steam rooms; track down the designer of a hotel, gym, or spa whose facilities you admire; or (best of all) hire an architect who has experience with such projects to put together the right team. You could also do research on the Internet, where many sauna and steam-room manufacturers advertise. You may even discover a local showroom. Also, check out Rob Roy's book The Sauna and Thomas Cowan and Jack Maguire's Spas & Hot Tubs, Saunas & Home Gyms, which are full of practical advice.
Q I'd like to find a spa that does tattoo removal. Any suggestions?
A Lasers and Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) therapy have greatly improved the results of tattoo removal. But no method can guarantee that your skin will look just as it did