Via Travel Industry Today 15 NOV 2016:
This month is the 40th anniversary of the first “Rocky” movie created and starred in by Sylvester Stallone. Back in 1976, Rocky was too busy working out and securing a boxing title to care about how his face looked or if his battle worn hands and nails used for punching opponents could use a good buff or his feet a soothing soak and clip. Rescue Spa in Philadelphia can provide some welcome relief to both Rocky and I and our aging bodies.
Stallone, now 70 years old, amazing still maintains his macho physique and persona. Despite his machismo he probably wouldn’t be averse to a little self-preservation of the facial and mani-pedi kind.
On a recent trip to Philadelphia while visiting various attractions and filling my tummy with culinary delights like cheesesteaks (hold the cheese please), pretzels, tomato pie and spicy Mexican dishes, I dedicated some time for a spa escape. With the colder and drier weather approaching and a rash of sleepless nights, the face was looking a little like Rocky after a few rounds – just not as battered and bloody but definitely puffy.
Unfortunately the ravages of age do occur as I’m in the boomer stage of life. Rescue Spa, opened in Philadelphia in 2004 in Center City (what Philly calls downtown). Its central location attracts visitors and locals alike. Located on the 3rd floor of an office building on Walnut Street, the 7,500 square foot spa has added space as the demand and clientele grows and plans to open up another spa in New York in 2017.
The facility features ten treatment rooms for body and facial treatments, infrared saunas, brow room, hair salon, steam room, locker rooms, nail lounge, relaxation lounge, beauty boutique and cafe bar.
Polish born owner Danuta Mieloch explains her philosophy on skincare and why she opened up Rescue Spa. “For the first half of your life you get the skin you were born with but for the second half, you get the skin you deserve. I created Rescue to help you get what you deserve: healthy, glowing, radiant skin. Because beautiful skin is a matter of choice, not chance.”
Mieloch and many of the staff walk the talk as it looks like they have not left silky smooth skin to chance. There was much beauty in this eye of the beholder!
The spa’s atmosphere is a blend of airy casual elegance with its bespoke furniture and eclectic wall art. The gray toned flooring and walls provide a sophisticated and gender-neutral feel. With the exception of the boutique area filled with a variety of skincare products overall the spa is welcoming to male clientele. As a guy it is refreshing not to be bombarded in the relaxation lounge by the latest issues of Cosmopolitan, Glamour, Allure, Redbook and more and not one male-oriented magazine. Instead in the lounge’s warm confines, there are comfy chairs where you can unwind with an erudite collection of books they have featured on a bookshelf while you can sip on tea, fruit or cucumber infused waters.
Mieloch’s Rescue Spa has won many accolades and it is known as the place in Philly for the best facial. Mieloch mixes the old with the new, the science with the holistic.
“We see the face first. It has to last a lifetime,” Mieloch explains. “For me, it’s not simply about skin. Your face is how you present yourself to the world.”
Right now my face is a living and walking billboard telling everyone I need more sleep and need to reduce my everyday stress.
I’m a perfect candidate for their signature Bio Lift Facial. Shannon, my experienced and personable aesthetician greets me with a warm smile and we go into the treatment room. After leaving the room and returning after I change the Q and A begins and she flicks on the powerful probing light to see what facial skin problems lay ahead. She does a thorough analysis: a few blackheads here and there, a bit of rosacea on my chin, skin dryness and puffiness under my eyes – but overall not too bad. Thankfully Shannon held back about my rapidly receding hairline – she’s skilled but not a miracle worker and treating men’s hair loss is not in her repertoire.
The 60-minute Bio-Lift Facial combines many different elements: a deep cleansing, extractions (fun, wow), exfoliation, lifting facial massage, application of masks and serums. Ingredients are determined depending on your skin type. They add the most advanced technology of non-invasive electric currents. This helps in the reducing wrinkles, puffiness and droopy eyelids. I’ve been accused of being droopy in my lifetime but not my eyelids. Thankfully since I am careful about the sun, the onslaught of wrinkles is minimal. Puffiness under the eyes? Now that I can claim I have in spades!
Shannon, with her rhythmic hand and finger movements, applies a dizzying array of cleansers, serums, and moisturizers to my face obviously feels passionate about what she does and explains with each application why it helps the skin feel like new again. One of the spa’s biggest sellers is Biologique Recherche Lotion P50. What owner Mieloch describes as, “Like a facial in a bottle.”
Following my facial I venture over to the mani-pedi area. It’s been a while since I’ve had a mani-pedi. The transfer of pampering now rests with Kelly, a bubbly and feisty Italian aesthetician with soft, welcoming hands.
Kelly puts my hands and then my feet at ease with relaxing and soothing soaks. She buffs the nails (no polish necessary!) while we engage in seamless conversations from the US election, skincare, best places to eat and drink in Philly, relationships with our respective loved ones, Canada and how my big toe nails got so discoloured. The fact she didn’t gag when she saw them earned her big points (and a good tip) with me.
Philly has plenty of attractions for you to discover whether it’s on the cultural side with the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Rodin Museum, it’s vibrant culinary scene, urban adventures from river rowing, hiking, mountain biking, or rich history with the Independence Hall and Liberty Bell. But if you are in Philly and in need of getting back some vitality don’t call 911 – just visit Rescue Spa. Take the first step back to good health.
Thanks to Rescue Spa I was now ready to tackle 72 more steps – the famous “Rocky Steps” and “face” the world again.
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