By Kelly Hushin
Living in New York, diversity surrounds us everyday. It’s in the cuisine we eat, the languages we see and hear on the subway and the beauty rituals brought to us from all parts of the globe. At the same time, it’s easy to forget that our city is actually quite small, and a trip all the way to 187th street (which may sound like an entire day’s work) is pretty close after all. And for at least one reason – well worth the hike.
That reason is Sava Spa, (www.savaspa.com) a luxurious retreat suitable for even the helplessly beauty-obsessed. Sava is tucked away on a small corner of Pinehurst Avenue, one of those quaint New York streets that makes one remember what’s especially diverse about one of the largest cities in the world. Walking down Pinehurst toward the spa, I started to imagine myself in some sort of storybook where everyone lives among parks and gardens, and a taxicab is a thing of the future. Maybe it’s a hokey thought, but Pinehurst is one of the few streets that actually brings a smile to your face simply by strolling its overgrown sidewalks. After such a satisfying jaunt, Sava is all the more appreciated.
NYC’s Pinehurst Avenue
Besides the picturesque locale, what makes Sava special is a treatment brought here all the way from Germany by Joanna Czech, aesthetician and owner. Curative Color Light Therapy is a new system that utilizes different wavelengths of light to target specific ailments. Anyone who took 8th grade science probably remembers Roy G. Biv. If that wasn’t part of your curriculum, Roy G Biv is an acronym standing for the colors of light, which come through a prism (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet). At Sava, aestheticians use colored light to penetrate the skin at varying depths. Each color has a specific level of penetration and plays a role in the healing and rejuvenation process clients undergo while getting a facial. Before experiencing the treatment first hand, I imagined different colored lasers waving across my face, but much to my surprise, the color therapy was nothing like that. Instead, aestheticians at Sava use the colored light as a sort of wash to bathe the face as it is being treated or “facial-ized.” A colored gel covers the light which projects over your face as you’re being worked on.
Sava Spa Interior
While the extreme relaxation my facial provided was enough to sell me on the quality of the spa, the fruity, dream-like smell of all the products further confirmed my positive impression. First, my facialist, Marta, gently massaged my face and skin with the care that only a skin-expert could understand. She moved to New York from Poland about five years ago, and she and many of her colleagues shared an endearing accent that reminded me of how cultured a city we have. Though she said I really didn’t need it (what can I say, I’ve been blessed with halfway decent skin), Marta decided to do a few extractions on my nose. She used red light for me first to prepare my skin for the products and treatments I would undergo throughout my facial. Red light has a deep level of penetration and helps promote circulation and stimulate metabolism.
REN F10 Enzymatic Smooth Radiance Facial Mask
A REN F10 Enzymatic Smooth Radiance Facial Mask, infused with papaya, essential oils of orange and pineapple and arctic blackcurrant oil rich in Omega 3, came next to exfoliate and nourish my skin. Once the red light part of the treatment was through, Marta switched to a green light to help balance the glandular function of the skin, as well as to relax and soothe it. At the end of the facial, Marta used a violet light, which works on the surface to strengthen and awake the skin. This color is also good for helping relieve headaches, she said.
After the facial, I found myself thinking of the long subway trek I’d have to make back to Grand Central, but quickly I was reminded how close it was when Marta told me she commutes daily from Green Pointe. Besides, I knew that a charming walk down Pinehurst awaited me and remembered that going so far from midtown was nothing but rewarding. While I can’t be sure whether I’d find the same enchantment at another spa in the city or whether my skin would look and feel as good without the use of colored lights, I know that when I looked in the mirror and touched my skin, I ‘saw the light’ in color therapy at Sava Spa.
211 Pinehurst Ave.
New York, NY 10033