Your Guide to Self-Care in The County💅
Written by: Anne Snyder [May 10, 2019]
Waves, ethereal sunsets, soft sweeping sand, drops of wine, reading by the waters.
If you’ve come to The County to relax and practice some self-care, you’ve come to the right place. Prince Edward County has even more relaxation to offer than meets the eye. Aside from watching the waves roll in and the wine pour, you can experience the many services that the County offers for self-care. Well-known health & wellness services such as spas, gyms, yoga studios, salons are available; as well as alternative services such as pottery spinning classes, adult retreats, yoga in a vineyard, at a brewery, and with goats, walking trails, and retail therapy, are all available in PEC.
If you aim for self-care pampering of a spa, many options are available through Prince Edward County.
If your accommodations are based in the downtown core of Picton, seek and find the leaning tower of Picton (the United Church), and beneath it, the beautiful historic building which is The Manse. The Manse offers accommodations as well as massages ranging from $75-$145, with add-on services such as exfoliation, hot towel wrap and rosemary essential oils, as well as foot treatments. Facial services range from $50-$100. Many locals are quick to offer this as a favourite, due to the wonderful hospitality from husband and wife team, Kathleen and Chef Chris Wylie!
For a variety of services, in a haven of history with a humane mindset and excellent hospitality, overlooking Picton bay, try The English Rose Spa. In an impossible to forget building full of history, with services that use only cruelty-free products, English Rose is a wonderful treat. The services they create more of a retreat than just a spa for their clients. Not only do they offer body work, make up, hands and feet treatments, and facials with a wide variety of prices; they also offer a library with books and games, accommodations, and an amazing breakfast meeting dietary needs. Follow them on Instagram for an array of beautiful photos catered to their types of services, also representing the organic and local products used in their treatments
Natural Beauty Mini Spa, a boutique spa right on Main Street, also offers services such as manicures and pedicures, as well as organic facials and other skin care. They can also be found on Facebook and Instagram. Inside you’ll find wooden accents, cozy grey chairs, and trendy floral wallpaper emphasizing mint and coral undertones, all used to create their lovely aesthetic. To tie it together and create a further charming experience, are owners Alicia and Rebecca, who will greet and treat you with their sweet demeanour and excellent service.
Nightingales Therapeutic Spa, situated in a renovated Victorian home downtown Bloomfield, offers massages, aroma spa therapy, and JSD acupressure. Prices range from $60-$110. Bloomfield Beauty Co., offers an espresso and wine bar, medical aesthetics treatment, skin rejuvenation, massage, manicures and pedicures, and laser hair removal; all in an atmosphere of luxury and Instagramable decor. This spa is a destination in itself.
For those whose focus is on physical self-care, the County offers many different fitness options aside from swimming, paddleboarding, and sunset beach walks, such as gyms and fitness studios.
Most County gyms specialize in personal training. In Picton you will find the greatest amount of options. The County Club & Spa offers day passes for their health club and massage therapy, in a beautiful space (think exposed brick and big windows looking out onto Main Street). The County Club is host to a number of unique and effective machines, and staff who make you feel like you’re right at home. The Gym in The Armoury focuses on physical literacy and education, and is located in a building built in 1912, a heritage building recently renovated into a harmony of its original roots and modern industrial style, right in the heart of Picton. Fitness Powers is a personal training and group fitness studio in town. At the cornerstone of Fitness powers is community, and a team to support you in your goals.
For choices outside of Picton, and if you are staying closer to Black River/Waupoos; you may be interested in using the CountyFIT fitness studio, owned by Kendra and run out of her home. She offers group fitness classes and personal training. If you find yourself vacationing in Westlake or perhaps Bloomfield area, EverFit Studios makes an excellent choice, where Kathy, Andrew and Adam work on incorporating community into fitness. Everfit Studios offers group classes, personal training, nutrition education, and retreats.
For fitness centre which offers a larger space and more equipment, Prince Edward Fitness & Aquatic Centre, the favourite gym for many locals. Available here is a weight room, yoga rooms, squash rooms, cycle and treadmill room, swimming pool, martial arts, and kids and group classes. Each change room also houses a sauna. PEFAC, as it is commonly called, is by far the most populated.
In terms of alternative physical self-care spaces such as yoga studios/class and healing spaces, there are many options all over the island. Wild Heart Healing Arts is self-described as a “healing arts hub for the creative and holistic.” They offer yoga, TCM/acupuncture, sound healing, specialized workshops, creative community gatherings, weekly movement and meditation classes, magick and art. Wild Heart is co-founded by Megan Marie Gates and Stacey Croucher, who seek to connect with people from all walks of life. Hothouse Mobile Sauna often joins with Wild Hearts to create a retreat of tranquility, an all-encompassing whole body and mind experience. Hothouse Sauna is available to come to you, can be found at public events, or private bookings. They also provide private self-care packages.
Yoga is diverse and exciting in PEC. In such an idyllic location, how could it not be? Yoga is offered in a variety of settings in PEC. Three Dog Winery offers yoga with vineyard views (Vynyassa Flow and Gentle Therapeutic Flow). The SHED farm invites you to participate in Yoga with Alpacas (Hatha). Only four dates this summer are available, so get your tickets quickly! And get your flow on in South Bay with the tomato queen herself at Vicki’s Yoga.
In town studios which offer a variety of yoga types (aside from aforementioned PEFAC , Wild Heart, and Everfit Studios) are theSTUDIO in Picton (focused on medical qigong reformer pilates and gyro kinesis movement); Viniyoga Connection with Kelly Cade in Picton; Yoga Jewels in Picton and Waupoos (Vinyasa, Ayurvedic, and reflexology); Harmanie Yoga in Wellington (yoga, hypnosis, Thai massage, intuitive healing, meditation); Fat Frog Yoga in Consecon (Vinyasa and Restorative.)
If you are travelling with your friends for a celebration, Jennifer Allsopp Yoga regularly operates out of the Yoga Hub in Belleville, but she also offers bookings for bachelorette parties and special events.
If your interest lies in out of the box self-care, you can try pottery classes, or perhaps a local life coach.
Patience, precision, focused presence, meditated mind, and the pleasure of engaging in a creation of your own. Workshops in pottery are a new and engaging way to practice self-care. You can find these workshops at Mena Dragonfly in West Lake, where Melanie offers one day workshops and weekly courses.
Courage, self-love, healing, and achieving your dreams. Hilary Foster is a local life coach in PEC who encourages people to know that they are worthy to get help in discovering all of the above qualities in themselves.
Prince Edward County offers more retreats, events, and festivals than can be covered here. Some which are specifically self-care care related are the Waupoos Island Retreats (Adult Summer Camp and Wellness Retreat), The Open Collective, and Retreats at Wesley Acres Camp and Retreat Centre. Wesley Acres is a Christian Campground and Retreat Centre, an option for those looking for a religion/spiritual focused retreats. The camp has a hall which is rented out for a variety of retreats, always changing. An update on current and upcoming events can be found here. Waupoos Island Camp has featured an Adult Summer Camp Weekend, with bubble soccer, mixology class, oyster chucking, wine tasting, meals and coffee, colour wars and other games, slip in slide, etc. This year Waupoos Island is hosting a Wellness Retreat, with workshops such as a foraging walk, group life coach session, and others, as well as activities such as Yoga and Meditation, and Sound Bathing. One on one treatments will also be available for services such as massage, and they will be offering wholesome food and drink. Keep an eye on this event page for the exciting and unique retreats at Waupoos Island Camp.
PEC Yoga Festival, Mapiya Retreats, PEC Wellness Retreat, and Full Moon YOGAFEST are all yoga centred events. PEC Yoga Festival, in July, features a lineup of yoga teachers and a vendor market, located downtown Picton at the historic Crystal Palace. Mapiya Retreats include accommodation, vegetarian meals, yoga classes, spiritual talks, meditative walks, and other activities, as well as full use of the amenities on site. Sand and Pearl Oyster Bar offers a Full Moon YOGAFEST in August, with bonfire, drumming, and a variety of yoga types and mashups as well as excellent food from one of Canada’s Top 10 New Restaurants, music, dance, and a market! All ages are welcome.