Best Of Hudson Valley 2015: Health & Beauty

Including best new workout, day spa, and more


New Workout

Piloxing at Middletown YMCA
Move over Zumba! Piloxing is here — and it’s not for the faint of heart. One of the newest trends to hit the workout scene in the Valley, Piloxing incorporates boxing, dance, and standing Pilates principles, making for an intense physical and mental experience. For those of you who haven’t yet jumped on this cardio-infusion bandwagon — or perhaps haven’t even heard about it — the exercise was created by Swedish dance and celebrity trainer Viveca Jensen, who eventually started a Piloxing academy in California. Get ready to go all-out during an hour-long session with Middletown YMCA instructor Valerie LaLima, who takes the fast-paced, high-energy workout and incorporates interval and barefoot training, which is pretty much guaranteed to burn up lots of pesky calories, as well as increase stamina. 845-344-9622;

Affordable Way to Get Zen

Community Yoga Classes at YogAlive New Paltz

Seeking inner peace, but not poverty? YogAlive — the result of a recent merger between two New Paltz studios, Ashtanga Yoga and the Jai Ma Yoga Center — offers two “community” classes each week on a donation basis. The suggested range is $3 to $10, but “any amount is accepted,” says owner Michael Stein. “It’s open to everyone.” The “very approachable” classes are appropriate for first-timers as well as regular practitioners; the Community Flow sessions feature live music once a month. 845-256-0465;

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hudson valley skin care
“Best Lotions Using Local Ingredients,” Hudson Valley Skin Care

Body Lotions Using Local Ingredients

Hudson Valley Skin Care
Tired of paying through the nose for skin- and hair-care products full of parabens and other chemicals? Hudson Valley Skin Care’s line of lotions, oils, butters, and soaps uses all-natural ingredients from local purveyors (oats from Wild Hive Farm in Clinton Corners, goat’s milk from Coach Farm in Pine Plains, and raw honey from Hummingbird Ranch in Staatsburg). And with its prices ranging from $5 to $16, you can look like a million bucks for just pennies. 888-277-7099;

Eyebrow Wax

European Wax Center Poughkeepsie
You’ll feel like you’ve entered a high-end spa when you step into the gleaming lobby of this Poughkeepsie salon. Though the ambience says “expensive,” the prices are reasonable. Even if you can’t afford big luxuries, you can probably spring for that $18 eyebrow wax (and if you’re a first-timer here, it’s free!). Not only doesn’t it hurt your wallet, the treatment doesn’t hurt — period! Rather than those painful strips used elsewhere that bring back memories of Mom yanking off your Band-Aid (and a bit of skin with it), this place uses a fancy-dancy imported wax with a low melting point that hardens within seconds and removes easily. Mix-and-match waxing plans enable you to save money on multiple treatments. Pick up a DIY eyebrow kit with tweezers, powders, and a soothing cream so that you can maintain your brows between treatments. Walk-ins are welcome. 845-298-0300;

Day Spa

River Rock Health Spa Woodstock
When visiting this beautiful, low-key spa — a perennial favorite with our editors — the Asian-inspired décor and relaxed country setting help you unwind before you even slip out of your shoes and into that lush white bathrobe. Then, you can choose from a large menu of professional services, including reflexology, herbal mud wraps, facials (using top-notch organic products), massages, and much more. Once you reach that Zen state, you may want to check out the local art that is often displayed onsite, or allow the spa to order a healthy lunch for you. 845-679-7800;

New Workout

Bubble Sports Hudson Valley at Gold’s Gym Poughkeepsie LaGrange
Our editors had a blast with this new “sport,” and although it may be chock-full of fun, Bubble Sports is an intense workout. Valley residents flock to the Gold’s Gym in Poughkeepsie for Bubble Sports scrimmages and pickup games. The gym even hosted a few Bubble Sports-themed bachelor parties. The bop-around sport encases participants in a 25-pound plastic bubble, and they are then encouraged to bounce into one another as they fight for possession of a ball. If you have the strength and endurance to strap yourself into the orb-like inflatable contraption, as well as a desire to get knocked down a few hundred times, you can face off with other bubblers in soccer, kickball, or our personal favorite, last man standing. Expect a killer leg and upper-body workout. 518-928-5389;

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Over-the-Top Spa Treatments

The Spa at Glenmere Mansion Chester
The luxurious spa may be in the middle of Orange County, but when you visit, you’ll feel like you have been whisked away to a different time and place. The centerpiece of the 8,000-square-foot spa is the Carrera marble Bath House and Hammam. Guests here can enjoy traditional Turkish treatments, as well as a wide variety of water therapies, including an herbal steam room, dry heat sauna, Swiss shower, cool mist room, and aqua massage vitality pool. Keep the relaxation going afterwards with delicious post-treatment tapas in the Relaxation Library. 845-469-1939;

Spa for a Bridal Party

Marion Salonspa Pleasant Valley
Whatever look you are going for on your big day, Marion Salonspa will not only have you and all your gals looking great, but you’ll have a ball and feel relaxed prior to the big walk down the aisle. The full Bridal Spectrum package includes a trial run and veil preview, wedding-day hairstyling, manicure, pedicure, facial, makeup, and the personalized attention of the spa’s professional coordinators. 845-635-1626;

michael polito“Best Personal Trainer,” Michael Polito of Old School Street Fitness

Photograph by Michael Polito


Beauty Salon

Lux Hair Studio

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Day Spa

Pineapple Day Spa
Pine Bush


Heather Williams at Headspace Salon & Gallery

Health/Fitness Club

IXL Health & Fitness

Health Food Store

Mother Earth’s Storehouse


SAGE Nail & Spa

Massage Therapist

Brandi Nichole’s Massage & Wellness

Personal Trainer

Mike Polito at Old School Street Fitness


Rhinebeck Pilates

Yoga Center

Living Yoga Studios
Cold Spring

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