Just minutes from downtown Los Angeles, is the hidden gem of Glendale. Known for its ethnic diversity, it is often referred to as the ‘Jewel City’. Behind the city enchanting views of the San Gabriel Mountains-smoky blue and etched against a bright blue sky-welcome visitors.
Begin your day with a bit of pampering at HealthCare Partners Med Spa. It may not sound like a "spa" but this is a true find. An elegant and tranquil lounge invites guests to dive into an exquisitely calming atmosphere. Lean back, sip on exotic teas and sample trays of bite-sized petit fours while listening to the soothing trickle of inside fountains.
The spa offers the latest, most amazing facial and laser treatments that are currently all the rage with television and fashion celebrities. The signature treatment uses a Titan laser followed immediately by a Genesis laser. It’s the secret trick many celebrities routinely use just before big night at a red-carpet event that demands they look their fabulous best.
The treatment is administered by Nancy, one of the most skilled technicians in town who trains other doctors in her technique. I relax into her expert hands and contrary to expectations it doesn’t hurt at all. It actually feels pleasant–as if you can feel your skin stimulated and energized. The Titan addresses the deepest layer of the skin and the procedure has an immediate effect of tightening any slack skin or facial features. The long term effect results in the re-stimulating of new collagen and elastin production in the skin.
Nancy tailors the treatment to each client’s individual needs and personal look for maximum efficiency. She can lift up certain parts of the face more than others by strategically placing the laser and varying its strength. I feel an immediately lifting and tightening of my skin as the collagen contracts. Who needs plastic surgery if you can do this for less money, and it’s safer, faster and less painful.
The treatment is followed immediately by a Genesis treatment. This one works on levels of the skin closer to the surface and is especially good for fine lines and wrinkles, acne or scars, redness and even enlarged pores. Afterwards my skin feels smooth like an exquisitely polished glass surface. In combination, the two treatments produce more dramatic results than any ‘facial’ I have ever experienced.
As an extra free bonus the nurses at the Glendale Medical Spa often throw in a little extra as needed. In my case Nancy uses another laser that zaps any tiny red spider veins that may have snuck up over the years on the face. Within seconds they are gone!
This is the closest to magic I have ever experienced and you are in and out in less than an hour.
No redness, no downtime, no pain! I float out confident with my skin aglow and polished. No need for make up that would only hide the healthy sheen of my skin. An added bonus is free valet parking and a private entrance.
Feeling fabulous, it’s time to hit the new Americana Mall at Brand Boulevard (the $400 million high-end outdoor mall and residence). The Americana was designed by the legendary Carosuo Affiliates and looks like an elegant Parisian town block complete with trolley rides and cascading water fountains. Wander through the 75 upscale shops and fashionable boutiques, specialty restaurants, cafes and state- of the art theater.
After all this shopping a great choice to relax and savor some exquisite food is Frida Mexican Cuisine. The restaurant specializes in healthy, authentic Mexican cuisine. For seafood try the Salmon a la Diabla, a grilled salmon with a burst-in-your-mouth chipotle cream sauce. A more hefty but utterly seductive choice is the Filete Tentacion, a charbroiled filet mignon on a Mexican truffle-chile sauce (Cuitlacoche) topped wth goat cheese and jalapeno sauce, served with sauteed mushrooms.
Afterwards a stop at Aveda for a make-up consultation is well worth it. It’s best to make an appointment but walk-ins are also welcome. The salon uses plant-based products. The atmosphere itself is very aromatic and the receptionists are friendly. I like the new look and also buy their Green Science eye cream that goes well under makeup.
Round out the day with an enjoyable evening under the stars when listening to one of the free outdoors concerts held at the Americana. Check their calendar of events for the schedule of bands playing Friday nights from 7-10 pm and Saturday afternoons from 3-6 pm. The whole experience is accompanied by the festive play of illuminated fountains displays. It’s been a well-rounded day: a pleasureable balance of rejuvenation, renewal and satisfaction of all the senses.
What & Where:
Healthcare Partners Medical Spa (225 W. Broadway Blvd, Suite 100; 818-291-4240)
The Americana at Brand (889 Americana Way; 877-897-2097)
Frida Mexican Cuisine (750 Americana Way; 818- 551-1666)
Aveda (215 S. Brand Blvd, # 10A; 818-240-3329)
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Silvia Kratzer is a professor of Film and Television at UCLA and at Chapman University. She has previously published her work in the academic field. More recently she has written screenplays and fiction and non-fiction essay published in the e—zine Crumpled Papers that she co-founded with other writing members and café literati of Hollywood. Originally from Germany, she has lived in Hollywood for over ten years. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.