PHOTO COURTESY OF TREE OF LIFE DAY SPA
MOUNT DESERT ISLAND — From going to the gym to losing weight and eating better, a new year provides a new opportunity to get health habits in check.
To provide help throughout the journey, local wellness businesses spoke to the Islander about their services and ways to turn those New Year’s resolutions into healthy lifestyle choices.
Bar Harbor’s Tree of Life Day Spa featuring Salon NaturELLES is offering new services that include eyelash extensions, microneedling and other therapeutic practices, including cupping – a suction created on the skin with the application of heated cups.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the spa had suspended practices that involved close contact with customers, such as facials, but those offerings are now back.
“A color, cut, makeup and eyelash extensions help put your best face forward during this whole crisis,” said day spa manager Philip Payne.
The day spa’s sister business, Acadia School of Massage, will also be offering one-hour massages on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays performed by students at a discounted rate from February through April.
“Our services provide a reduction of stress and anxiety, which helps improve your own well-being,” said Payne. “We’ve all been through a lot during the past couple years, so it’s a great way to recharge and make things a little better.”
Tree of Life Day Spa is not the only local business offering new wellness services. Destination Health Owner Sheridy Olson said the downtown Bar Harbor facility is offering new nutrition programs, facials and retreats that are specifically geared toward promoting a healthy lifestyle. Destination Health operates The Claremont Hotel’s Botanica Spa in Southwest Harbor and has plans to operate wellness services at The Bayview Hotel in Bar Harbor.
The Yellow House Inn Bed & Breakfast is another facility that has been hosting wellness retreats. Well + Wander Retreats co-owner Jena Young hopes the Bar Harbor bed-and-breakfast’s new experience will give people an opportunity to focus on their minds and bodies.
“It’s meaningful to carve out time for yourself; to take things a little bit deeper than you would if you were just sitting by a pool at a resort,” said Young. The Well + Wander Retreat’s relaxation experiences offer mindfulness walks, meditation and yoga classes.
Last year, Britt Hulbert also began a full-time yoga service with the establishment of her business, BH Yoga Dog Studio. Aside from teaching yoga through her online studio, Hulbert says that she has been busier than ever doing personal training and teaching spin classes in person at the Mount Desert Island YMCA. She said that her clients still wear masks while they work out in person.
“Yoga is for everyone and the word yoga is such a huge rainbow of many things. Mindfulness is really yoga. It will better your life,” she said.
Downeast Pilates owner Linda Homer of Southwest Harbor now also teaches Pilates classes virtually. “It demonstrates to the brain how to move your body in a smart, effective and efficient way,” said Homer about her classes. With most of her classes now happening through Zoom, Homer instructs clients to get in the correct positioning to do exercises before she guides them through movements that engage all of their muscles.
In addition to retreats and wellness services, Jen Harry has been offering meditation classes with her business, Acadia Mindfulness Adventures.
“It’s a great COVID-safe resource for both our community and for visitors, which is important to be known for people who are coming to the island that are looking for things to do,” she said.
The outdoor experience consists of an initial discussion about mindfulness, mindful walking, eating and a mindful visit to the ocean where Harry teaches clients to use all five senses for staying engaged in their mindfulness practices. She plans to wrap up the adventure with a discussion about how people can use mindfulness practices in their everyday life.
Editor’s note: Philip Payne is the husband of a Mount Desert Islander employee.
Wellness service providers
(While not a complete list of area providers, contact information for those included in this story are listed below.)
Tree of Life Day Spa featuring Salon NaturELLES
108 Cottage St., Bar Harbor
Acadia School of Massage
108 Cottage St., Bar Harbor
124 Cottage St., Bar Harbor
Yellow House Inn Bed & Breakfast’s Well + Wander Retreats
5 The Field, Bar Harbor
BH Yoga Dog Studio
15 Deer Run, Bar Harbor
101 Main St., Southwest Harbor
Acadia Mindfulness Adventures
Ninah Gile, an MDI native, covers the town of Bar Harbor. She is glad to be back in Maine after earning a bachelor’s degree in San Diego from the University of California.