CALMING THE CHAOS AT PALOMA
Written by: Amelia Jeffers / Photography by Brian Kaiser and Meghan Kerr
If the transformation of their building was not dramatic enough, then the transformative encounters had by their guests are a good indication that Paloma Spa owners Angela Gann and Stella Giometti have what it takes to execute their vision for a radically different Columbus day spa experience.
The former payday loan office at 1197 W Fifth Avenue in Grandview shows no trace of the harsh aesthetic of the former business. Instead, soft lines, warm colors, and cool lighting provide a serene backdrop for all manner of wellness-related services. Entering for my initial visit, I was struck by the stunning displays of unique, luxury and eminently giftable items: meditation tools for kids and adults, plush robes, exquisite lotions and fragrances, and beautiful bouquets of dried flowers and curated crystals. My eyes landed on a deck of cards titled “Calm the Chaos”, and I immediately sensed myself relaxing into what I expected to be an indulgent and nourishing experience. Stella, Angela and team did not disappoint.
Within a few moments of walking into the front doors, a warm greeting from Stella led to a quick introduction to my first practitioner, who led me to The Dome. Architecturally, The Dome is just what it sounds like with a vaulted ceiling and rounded walls; but, aesthetically The Dome is unlike any gathering I have ever visited. Even my favorite wellness retreat in New England can’t compare to the visual and sensual comfort afforded by the gentle and soothing scents, sights, and furnishings of The Dome. Individual mats with cozy wraps line one side of the room, while low chairs with plenty of pillows are assembled on the other. In the center sits an unassuming tableau fitted for my visit with an assortment of bowls. My practitioner specialized in sound bathing, guided meditation, aura-photography, and intuitive readings. If that sounds a bit new-age to you, fear not. My practitioner and I settled into an engaging and enlightening spiritual conversation, and by the end of our time together, I felt like I was saying goodbye to an old friend. The professionals at Paloma seem adept at meeting each guest where they are on their spiritual and wellness journey. Every service is highly customizable for individuals, couples or groups.
The Dome’s intentional acoustics are a perfect complement to the resonance required for a proper sound bath in which skilled practitioners utilize specially-designed bowls (often shaped from specific crystals) to achieve immersive tones meant to aid meditation and relaxation, but it also hosts may of the other experiences at Paloma, especially for groups. A weekly schedule of events is listed on the Paloma website under “Meet Us in The Dome.” Any of the activities can be enjoyed as a member of a scheduled class or as a private, invitation-only activity for anyone looking for a fresh alternative to a night out with friends.
Lining the parallel halls that lead to The Dome are private rooms with heavy, sound-proof curtains that provide plenty of privacy but lend to the distinctive decor, reminiscent of a Marrakesh market. My visit included an incredible deep-tissue massage, marked by warm CBD-infused oils. From sports to pre-natal and anything in between, the massage menu at Paloma has something for everyone. Also not-to-be-missed is an assortment of nourishing facials, including lymphatic, corrective, and brightening treatments for every skin type and concern. Available as an add-on or standalone service is a restorative infrared sauna. The unmatched tranquility of my Paloma experience left me wondering only one thing: when to visit again (oh, and perhaps how to share it with my friends). sl
PALOMA will host a Holiday Market from December 17 to December 24, featuring some of the most sought after wellness brands in the world (carried by no other retailer in the Midwest).For more information about Paloma Spa, visit experiencepaloma.com.