THE WOODHOUSE DAY SPA
’09’S UNPARALLELED PERSONAL PAMPERER
BY ERNIE ALTGELT PHOTOGRAPHY BY MARTIN WADDY
In today’s hectic and harried environment, even in laidback 78209 keeping one’s “cool” can, at times, be a bit trying. And, at its worst, the stresses rife within our modern everyday society may even begin to compound in a number of negative ways resulting in emotional and possibly, physical debilitation as well. To counter the same, those in need of a reboot and/or a healing retreat often had to avail themselves of usually far-flung (and often pricy) facilities instituted for the easing of stress-related distress, its subsequent damage or even just to experience a little much needed “me time.” Fortunately for ‘09ers, a complete package of respite, relaxation and rejuvenation can all be had seven days a week in a welcoming, nurturing and extremely professional setting deep within the heart of our very own neighborhood. Yep, since 2005, the extraordinary Quarry-based Woodhouse Day Spa has been the destination for Heightsters seeking a little (or a lot) of very personal pampering and, to quote those in the know, “It feels so good.” Ahh!
First opened in Victoria, Texas, in 2001 by a very savvy business woman named Jeni Garrett, the original spa was so named because its home was, and still is, an historic 1910 domicile originally built by a railroad conductor named Harry Woodhouse. As Jeni adds, “It seemed fitting that we keep his name since area residents knew the property as such.” And based on the success of that location and the 14 others now in operation across Texas, the Woodhouse name, with its warm connotations, has proved to be a good fit.
Her primary reasons for opening a spa were several. Jeni has a background as a business manager in the healthcare industry and had exposure to the positive responses from patients when offered a little targeted TLC. She was also aware that “the spa business was somewhat fragmented” at that time and felt she could bring a consistency to the service – she enjoyed patronizing a Houston facility and was able to research the good and bad aspects of running such an enterprise. And lastly, after the horrors of 9-11 it seemed the entire nation was “stressed out” and in need of an emotional lift. With her administrative background, familiarity with spa offerings and her can-do spirit, she was convinced the time was right for her vision of an immersive, all-inclusive approach.
All Woodhouse locations operate as full-service luxury day spas. The high standards insisted upon generally exceed customer expectations by providing the perfect balance of beauty, health and wellness. What this simply means for patrons are wonderful hands-on treatments that truly do encourage well-being from head to toe. And based on the almost 100 percent satisfaction levels achieved that generate an impressive amount of repeat business, it works!
At Alamo Heights’ 7,100-square-feet Woodhouse Day Spa, operated and co-owned by a very engaging Karen Coyle with the assistance of 30 skilled and licensed co-workers, visitors delight in its soothing, inviting atmosphere redolent with quiet competency. From the spacious lobby where greetings abound amid a tantalizing retail area filled with purchasable products that allow customers to take home a little of the experiences they are soon to enjoy, to the various private and specialized treatment rooms where the actual therapies are conducted, the entire facility is designed to enhance comfort and calm. But it’s what happens when client and service provider interact that counts.
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Depending on the desired rejuvenating treatment chosen – there are more than 70 offered: for comprehensive information, visit their website – customers entrust themselves to the capable and caring staffers, each highly trained in the use of oils, lotions, hot stones, muds and even seaweeds that when combined with expert massage and manipulation are intended to relax tight, sore muscles, rejuvenate scalp and skin and ease stressed psyches. Each individual session generally lasts a glorious 50 minutes, but many elect for multiple treatments that can, as Karen attests, “fill an entire day.” Customization after consultation is available as well. And many couples and/or groups schedule “together” time, which the spa is also happy to accommodate. Whatever is desired or selected, the results achieved can be amazing, leaving the recipient(s) with a renewed freshness and deep feelings of well-being that can last long after the sessions have ended. As a proud Karen relates, “Seeing our clients ‘before and after’ is truly rewarding for us. The transformations can be amazing, but that’s just what a little unparalleled personal pampering can do.” Ahh, yes!