For those who’d love to take a break, plenty of places on Long Island offer opportunities to relax, de-stress and have a bit of "me time."
Since we all relax differently, we found everything from where to try a scented spa body wrap to where to paint with Jello to where to join a guided "forest bathing" walk in the woods. If you’re up for taking time to restore your emotional health, here are some innovative ways to make it happen.
SCAMPER TO PAMPER at MYW MANSION SPA
HIGHLIGHTS: In this newly renovated spa, go for a scented body wrap. Spa manager Deana Arecco explains, "There’s a pumpkin flavor for fall, coffee or chocolate, and peppermint flavor for winter. They rotate. You lie down on aluminum foil, wrap up like a taco, and marinate." There’s also paddleboard yoga for adults and kids (a gentle yoga class where six boards are tethered together on a line and float in an indoor pool). There’s a salt cave, a gentle massage with birch tree branches known as a Russian Banya Treatment, and much more.
DETAILS: The spa is located inside the Mansion at Glen Cove, but you don’t have to be a hotel guest to use it. 200 Dosoris Lane; 516-776-8808. For spa menu and varying prices: mywstudio.com. Wraps are $220, including a body scrub. Paddleboard yoga is $45 per class.
RED HOTS SPA at the GARDEN CITY HOTEL
HIGHLIGHTS: This spa is also a newbie; it opened Dec. 1. Try a warm rose mud cocoon. You’ll be enveloped in warm mud and oils to hydrate the skin followed by a body butter massage. The Signature Massage is the most calming: a Swedish Massage combined with aromatherapy and hot stones. High-end facials and an elaborate lash and brow bar are a few other highlights.
DETAILS: The spa is located inside the Garden City Hotel, but you don’t have to be a hotel guest to use it. 45 7th St.; 516-663-7600. For spa menu and varying prices: redhotsspa.com. Prices for the Signature Massage: 50 minutes, $15; 80 minutes, $235; 100 minutes, $285. The Warm Rose Mud Cocoon is $125.
THE FUNKY OM
HIGHLIGHTS: Among many calming, creative yoga classes offered in this studio, the Candlelight Flow and Restore class is one of the most relaxing. Electric and beeswax candles are placed throughout the room to create a natural sense of light. Owner Milard Roper, an acupuncturist/massage therapist/martial arts teacher explains, "The candles provide another level of relaxation as the nervous system is unwinding. It’s conducive to the nervous system winding down."
DETAILS: 400 W. Jericho Tpke., Huntington; 631-327-8094 Price: Candlelight class: $25. For additional classes: thefunkyom.com.
BEYOND ZEN HEALING
HIGHLIGHTS: In her spa studio, longtime founder/owner Nicole Fader offers a wide variety of massages and healing techniques, and takes it to the next level. If desired during a treatment, Fader will place crystals on clients or under the table to enhance healing. She can also work with spiritual cards to enhance guidance during treatments. In January, Fader will offer Vision Board Workshops. Through meditation and visual aids placed on a board, clients envision their optimal lifestyles.
DETAILS: 202 W. Park Ave., Long Beach; 516-606-5473; call or text to arrange an appointment. Pricing: $125 per hour for basic healing session, other prices vary.
SPA AND SALON AT EAST WIND
HIGHLIGHTS: The spa is located inside the quaint, stately East Wind Hotel. Getaway Packages at the hotel through March 31 combine the spa and hotel stay, or book a spa service separately by appointment. Spa favorites include a sea mud wrap, a milk and honey body package, and a head, hand and foot massage. The hotel is located near the North Fork, just steps away from wine country and near the Hamptons.
DETAILS: 5720 NY25A, Wading River; 631-846-2339. Combined hotel and spa packages: Winter Wonderland package for a couple, includes two vouchers for the spa and restaurant. Weekdays: $299 including tax, Weekends: $399 including tax. Love is in the Air package combines hotel and specific spa services. Wine, Dine and Unwind package is just for the spa; eastwindlongisland.com/spa.
CREATE AND MEDITATE at FOREST THERAPY WALK
HIGHLIGHTS: "Forest bathing" is a way to spiritually connect with nature. Take a guided, meditative walk through arboretums, preserves and parks across Long Island with certified forest therapy guide Linda Lombardo. She explains, "Nature can be relaxing and calming, and studies show it can have a lasting effect. As we’re walking through the woods, we’re slowing down and noticing what’s in motion around us when we’re not moving. Maybe it’s a spider spinning a web. We’re not just walking through a place; we’re walking with it." Guided walks are offered throughout the winter. "When it’s snowing lightly, it’s a perfect invitation to watch a snowflake’s landing pattern," Lombardo says.
DETAILS: Walks are typically two hours in length. To find public walk locations and dates: forestbathingfinder.com. To schedule a private walk: wildheartnatureconnection.com; 516-238-0059. Pricing: $40 per person. Public walks: age 16 and older.
HIGHLIGHTS: Combine art, relaxation and meditation during workshops in this progressive art studio. As education director Larissa Grass puts it, "Many people who attend our programs come to relax and clear their minds. It’s a way to try something new to do for themselves."
On Feb. 11, teens and adults can be part of an Art & Meditation class: a relaxing, immersive workshop that combines spontaneous drawing techniques with body relaxation, aromatherapy and guided imagery meditations. On March 11, try painting with Jello. "It’s so sensory and calming and squishy," says Grass.
DETAILS: 90 North Country Road, Setauket; 631-751-2676. Pricing: All Night Sketch Fest $50 for six hours, $100 for 24 hours; Art & Meditation Class: $40; Gelli painting Class: $50. Additional workshops: gallerynorth.org.
QUIET-ISH FAMILY TIME at ANTIQUE CAROUSEL
HIGHLIGHTS: Even if your kids aren’t quiet, the animals will be. This charming, indoor, heated carousel is open on weekends during the winter. Since it’s surrounded by windows, ride around and around, look out on the winter scene in Mitchell Park, and chill.
DETAILS: 115 Front St, Greenport; 631-477-1133. Carousel hours: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekends, holidays and school closings. Price: $2.00 per ride, children under 4: free.
LONG ISLAND YARN AND FARM
HIGHLIGHTS: Take a relaxing tour of the farm. Interact with llamas, sheep, rabbits, goats, alpacas, potbelly pigs and chickens. As part of the farm tour, take a peaceful walk with a llama.
DETAILS: 125 Gerard Rd, Yaphank; Call for all tour appointments: 631-924-8110. Price for farm tour: $15 per person, with a minimum spend of $50.
ONE PEACEFUL MOMENT at BLUEBIRD CHOCOLATE
HIGHLIGHTS: One moment is better than nothing. Chocolatier Katya Witthuhn opened her new shop in September and offers homemade, hand-painted, truffle-like chocolates with flavors in sync with the holidays. There are also flavors available year-round such as salted caramel, dark chocolate ganache, and fig and goat cheese. In January, stop by for a strawberry Champagne truffle.
DETAILS: 8 Audrey Ave., Oyster Bay; 516-253-0585; price: $2.50 per truffle