Friday, November 30, 2007

LRS Philosophy and the Day Spa Mission

What we do at the Little Red Day Spa is driven by a philosophy based primarily on the book "The Gift: Imagination and the Erotic Life of Property" by Lewis Hyde. Jeff Hengst, owner and founder of the Little Red Studio and the Little Red Day Spa, has detailed and evolving goals for each of these ventures.

These goals are artistic in general and the others are health and beauty oriented for the spa specifically. Furthermore, Jeff feels that building these artistic goals into the fabric of the spa gives the experience more depth. The result is an environment which is rejuvenating for your body, soul and mind.

I would like to share this philosophy with you. Sometimes knowing the background can make an experience richer. I have come to the conclusion that should I present it in 3 or 4 parts, so as to not be an overwhelming amount of information. Please stay tuned for the first installment: "Erotic Art" is all art... well, almost.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

The emails I get.

I love email. It's such an efficient way to communicate, most of the time. However, when one is making appointments, it is not. From the time I get your email and reply to it about times available, the chance that someone called in and made an appointment is very high. I am then in the position of waiting for a reply to outdated information, which will trigger another round of emails with the corrected "times available."

Not efficient at all. This is why if you email me in response to a Craigslist post, or after reading the website, I will encourage you to call me to set up an appointment. Whenever I see an email with the subject line of "I need a massage" or "Appointment?" I heave a little sigh. I don't want to be rude, after all, the person has made an effort to contact me and here I am asking them to do more, which goes against my customer service training.

And sometimes, when I open these emails, I don't have to do anything. A new scam has evolved where someone says they will send you a cashier's check for a months worth of services plus extra for some other costs, and you have to cash the check and send them back the extra monies. Occasionally, these emails are difficult to spot out at first and it's not until you have read a whole page of text do you realize what is being asked of you. But today I only had to read the first paragraph:

My name is James . i am a new member of craigslist and i am in need of any therapeutic service for my 19 year old daughter. my daughter as been suffering from a severe pain due to a long term fracture on the left leg ribs. When my daughter was 18, she got an accident and was treated but ever since then she has been experiencing this pain on her left leg yearly.

Ok, bad translation software. That is excusable. Just to make sure I am not dismissing anyone out of hand, and also for fun, I scan the rest of the email to ascertain the goal. Another paragraph telling me how much pain the daughter is in and then this:

Since i am in spain,my CEO BOSS that i am work for here is willing to pay me an advance payment of my work with a check/money order in dollars. I am willing to send down this check/money order to you for your charges. i would like you to make some advance payment for one month for this services and i need to fly her back to the state immediatly we agree on this.

And there is the promise of advance payment for him and me. Interestingly worded with the truth. (My emphasis.) That's not very common. The next paragraph goes on to tell me that I must send my name, address, etc... so that they can mail me a check and how I am supposed to process it and send them back money. With all the constant references to his daughter's pain and that he is doing this for her, and I almost feel bad for giggling at the audacity of this person.

So ends my public service announcement regarding making appointments via email. Please always include your phone javascript:void(0)
Publish Postnumber in your emails and I will be able to efficiently make your appointment.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Holiday Open house and Gift certificate Sale

Little Red Day Spa
1506 Franklin Ave. E.
Sunday, December 9th
3pm - 6pm

Are you curious about the Little Red Day Spa?
Has it been a while since you visited us?
Do you want to give a gift of relaxation that can be shared?

After a summer of renovations and upgrades, the Little Red Day Spa is
very excited to open our doors to visitors. Please join us for
refreshments on Sunday, December 9th to meet and chat with some of the
practitioners who work at the spa, look around and learn how we
incorporate the artistic vision of LRS into our spa treatments.

Gift certificates will be available for purchase during the Open
House. Between the hours of 3 and 6pm, prices for spa sessions with
one practitioner are discounted as follows:
60 minutes - $100 ($110 value)
90 minutes - $125 ($150 value)
120 minutes - $160 ($200 value)

Discounts are also available on Gift Certificates for special sessions
such as the Tandem Bliss and Couple's Massage. Please be sure to ask
Sophia, the Spa Director, for details. We accept cash, checks and

For more information, please go to or call
(206) 963-0772.

A Watsu session for me!

Over the holiday weekend, I treated myself to a Watsu session with Gary Jaeger, LMP. I heard about him from my favorite chiropractor, Catherine Mastroianni, and was excited to hear that there was another Watsu practitioner in the Seattle area. Actually, quite close by. Gary does some of his sessions at M'illumino, which is on the corner of Roosevelt and 70th, so I chose that venue. (The Longhouse in Redmond is the other venue where Gary holds his Watsu sessions.)

The pool is outdoors, in a sparse, but pretty, bamboo garden. It was a bit cold until I got in the water, and then I was pretty toasty. Gary did a great job of keeping me submerged and it was wonderful to float and swoosh around in the round pool. I have to admit, just being in the round was quite different than in my square spa. In a square, you just can't swooshed around in lazy circles at the same speed as you do in a circle. I found that to be one of the biggest differences from Watsu sessions I have gotten at the Little Red Day Spa. I really want a round spa, now. More than before.

The session gave me a chance to reflect on my own style and that of my teachers. I went to Gary specifically to have my neck worked on, and he has a tendency to work from only one side of the body. Now, that doesn't mean he only worked on my left side, it's just that he worked both sides, limbs, etc..., from the right side. This unfortunately left my neck in the same position for over an hour. I kept waiting for him to cradle my head in his other arm, and it never happened. So, while I was relaxed, and my muscles were looser, I still had a bit of a crick in my neck.

I now truly understand why Dwight and Richard were so adamant about moving from one side of the body to the other throughout a Watsu session. I had always looked at it as something I needed to do to keep my body in balance. Receiving bodywork is one of the best ways to increase one's knowledge and awareness. Thank goodness it's so enjoyable, too! What better way to brush up on techniques than relaxing in a warm pool while being cradled by a caring practitioner?

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Little Red Lounge takes over the Little Red Day Spa!

Don't worry it's just for the evening. Hope to see you there after you have a wonderful Thanksgiving Day!

Little Red Lounge
Friday, Nov. 23rd @ 9PM

Come relax after Thanksgiving at our ever-popular Little Red Lounge, held at Hengst Studio, located at 1506 Franklin Avenue E.

Some fun performances will add to the evening full of dancing, socializing and hot tubbing. Serafina Restaurant will provide a no-host wine bar and light hors d'oevres will be served.

Tickets are $20 and can be purchased in advance at or at the door when you arrive.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Open House soon!

We have decided to host a Holiday Open House at the Little Red Day Spa. it will be held on the afternoon of Sunday, December 9th and it will be a great chance to wander around the spa, meet the practitioners, buy discounted gift certificates, nibble some snacks and see the incredible paintings by Jeff Hengst. (Jeff is the owner of the day spa as well as the founder of the Little Red Studio.)

Still working out the details, but save the date. I'll post as soon as things like times and prices get worked out.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Back in the water again.

This past week, doing Watsu on a regular basis has brought up a lot of thoughts on relaxation and water.

In table massage, touch is coming to you from the practitioner's hands, arms, the table itself, the sheets. Most of that sensation is static, though, helping you to focus on the area that the practitioner is working on. Each new area that is being massaged is put into the limelight and your awareness enables you to let go of tension. As the therapist moves from area to area, your awareness shifts.

In water massage, touch comes from the practitioner's hands, arms, legs, belly, sometimes even feet, the sides of the tub, and the water surrounding you. The water enveloping you is never static, even when you are held still in the practitioner's arms, you can feel the smooth swirling of the water going past you. Your awareness is scattered. For the first few moments, it decreases your ability to relax. You have more and much subtler cues to relax than you normally receive during a land massage. Once you process the information, you notice you are supported just as much as if you were on a table. The support moves and undulates, but is constant, none the less.

Most people need a little coaching to let their limbs be heavy and float like kelp. Our instincts tell us that we have to use our muscles to support ourselves. Stiff legs and tilting the chin to the chest are natural inclinations when laying on our back in the water, however, these actions cause our hips to sink. Letting you head fall back, resting in your practitioner's hands or arms, allows your torso and hips to be more buoyant. Letting your hips and knees be soft and bendable makes moving and stretching you easier and makes less work for your practitioner.

Watsu is unique in that it affords us to float in a gentle medium that fosters relaxation. This should be taken advantage of in every way. And it's such a lovely image to pretend you are kelp, swaying gently in the warm water.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Everything is back in order.

Hot tub is fixed. Again. This time with the new part, so we should be fine. The customer service never improved. I haven't written about it here because I figured no one wants to hear complaining.

The phone is fixed. I apologize to anyone who's phone call wasn't answered or message wasn't returned in a timely manner. I am back on track in the communications department.

Pardon me, I'm going to sneak out and enjoy the snippets of sunshine while I can.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Balancing act.

I got the sweetest phone call yesterday morning. It was from a man who had come in with his wife for a couple's spa session the day before.

"Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! from me. And Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! from my wife. She was melted the whole rest of the day and today I feel so revived."

When he had called and set up the appointment, he had mentioned she had been under a lot of stress and while he wanted it to be something they both did, he asked me to pamper her a little more than him. Since balancing my time with two people is always a little tricky, I was thankful for his cue. Most of the time I focus on intuiting who needs more direct attention and who reaches a relaxed state faster with more indirect, subtle interactions. Sometimes I only facilitate a couple pampering each other. Finding the best way to teach them to do Watsu and still make them feel like they can have an intimate, connected moment with each other.

When one guest states wanting to spend more time focusing on the other, be it for a special occasion like a birthday or just stress levels, I still make sure to watch body language and interactions for cues that the balance needs to change. So often, it means that they are looking for a 60/40 split in attention, but sometimes it is a dramatic disproportion. If what the guest means is that they want to help me pamper their partner, then frustration can develop if I don't make enough room for them to help me.

And it doesn't have to be about a miscommunication, sometimes we don't know exactly what we want until we get in a situation, and that's why being adaptable and flexible is so important in this job. I like that I have to be somewhat of a detective in making each session a great experience for my guests. Crafting it and helping the session to evolve to meet each person's need to be relaxed and rejuvenated. It's part of the fun; discovering what makes people happy.

Phone problems.

If it's not one thing, it's another.

The Spa has been having communications difficulties since Friday evening. Phone calls are not going through. Fortunately, the voicemail service is still working, so please be patient with me and I will return your calls as soon as possible.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Guest Watsu Practitioner

Next week is quite special. We have a Watsu and Shiatsu specialist visiting from California. Richard helped start the spa 2 years ago and is coming back for a little more than a week. Another reason we are so incredibly happy that the hot tub is back in full working order. He will be offering appointments, one of which is an amazing combination session consisting of Watsu and Shiatsu, during our regular spa hours.

Richard is an incredible therapist and someone I am deeply indebted to, as he has helped me develop my Watsu style when we first started the spa. If you are looking for a Watsu session with a more therapeutic angle than we normally offer, please give me a call and I'll get you set up with a session with Richard.

If you are interested in making an appointment for next week, I highly recommend that you call in soon, as I expect to be booked rather full while Richard is in town.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

And there was much rejoicing!

Finally got the news I have been waiting for; the part for the spa has come in!

Tomorrow the spa company is supposedly sending out someone to do the part swap and installation. This means appointments will be limited and only available last minute for tomorrow, Thursday the 8th. Hopefully, they will be done and gone by 11am so as not to impact operations.


Friday, November 2, 2007

LRS Erotic Shorts Review

I know, it's not directly spa related. Though a couple is coming in tonight for a spa session before going to tonight's Little Red Studio show "Erotic Shorts" It is an evening of one act plays.

I went to the dress rehearsal last night and laughed so hard I was a bit embarrassed! All but one of the plays were quite humorous, so it was an incredibly fun evening. My sweetie and I thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and I highly recommend it for a night out. We both picked out the Play "Limits" as our favourite, though the rejected lesbian play and the one with the 2 superheroes were great, as well. One because it set you up and then went in an unpredictable and interesting direction. The other because it followed the expected trajectory.

Jeff Hengst, the producer and founder of LRS, sent this out in an email to the troupe today: "The latest incarnation of the Erotic Shorts is bold right out of the gate. More daring than I imagine Seattle audiences will find anywhere around town. It is also smart and very funny. And then it gets even funnier as the night unfolds. Kerry has put together a sassy and sexy night of outrageously funny short plays."

Doors open at 8:30, with the show starting at 9pm. And with a $20 ticket price, it's a steal. Address is 750 Harrison St. in Seattle. (Not the spa location.) There is a no-host bar provided by Serafina with wine and non-alcoholic beverages. Go to Little Red Studio for more info.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Gift Certificates Available!

One of the great things about giving your sweetie a gift certificate to the Little Red Day Spa is that you can join them in redeeming it!

Whether you come in by yourself or as a couple, a 90 minute spa session is $150, 2 hours is $200. Except for the Therapeutic Massage sessions, all of our session prices are based on time length and the number of practitioners. You can purchase a block of time or the dollar amount of your choosing.

Please check our website for a full description of each session. You can call us at (206) 963-0772 and order gift certificates over the phone and have them mailed to you, or arrange for a time to stop by the spa.