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Lifestyle: Best of SLO County 2016 

BEST HAIR SALON

Bluebird Salon

click to enlarge BEST PLACE TO GET A MASSAGE: SYCAMORE SPRINGS RESORT AND SPA:  In 1886, two prospectors started drilling for oil, but they found hot sulfur mineral water—the pair established a spa and mineral springs resort along what’s now Avila Beach Drive. In the 1930s, Hollywood celebrities would stop on their way out to Hearst Castle. It eventually became a destination to cure aches, pains, and arthritis. Now, it’s committed to continuing its legacy as a California mineral springs resort, and the locals like it that way. The resort’s won Best Massage in SLO County for 15 out of the last 16 years—of course, you get a mineral soak before that massage. - DESIGN BY ALEX ZUNIGA
  • DESIGN BY ALEX ZUNIGA
  • BEST PLACE TO GET A MASSAGE: SYCAMORE SPRINGS RESORT AND SPA: In 1886, two prospectors started drilling for oil, but they found hot sulfur mineral water—the pair established a spa and mineral springs resort along what’s now Avila Beach Drive. In the 1930s, Hollywood celebrities would stop on their way out to Hearst Castle. It eventually became a destination to cure aches, pains, and arthritis. Now, it’s committed to continuing its legacy as a California mineral springs resort, and the locals like it that way. The resort’s won Best Massage in SLO County for 15 out of the last 16 years—of course, you get a mineral soak before that massage.

742 Marsh St., SLO

Bluebird Salon owner Ariel Shannon says the key to success at this downtown salon is the positive, fun atmosphere fashioned by her great staff and clientele. They’ll greet you by name and offer you something to drink as soon as you walk in. The place is always abuzz while clients get all done up or are given a new do. After asking around if there’s anything that they’re particularly known for, the answer was pretty much everything.

—Jono

Runner up: The Bladerunner Salon & Day Spa

BEST BARBER SHOP

Anderson Barber Shop

953 Monterey St., SLO

“Once you tried the rest you can always come to the best,” said Owner Ray Shearer. It’s perfect and picturesque; the faded striped barbershop cylinder outside framing the giant window that puts the cozy spot on display. Nestled between other storefronts, it’s a peek back into the past right on Monterey Street. Inside you can see Shearer moving around his customers as they sit in the sunshine and you can imagine that when the younger patrons are waiting for their haircut, maybe they get a lollipop for their patience. Besides, with that name, what else could you do? “Destiny,” Shearer said. 

—Rebecca

Runner up: Mike’s Barber Shop

BEST NAIL SALON

Marigold Nails

3940 Broad St., suite 4, SLO

It’s clean. Sterile. And has bangin’ decorations up for every season and holiday the year has to offer. “The customers love my shop,” said owner Van Nguyen. But there’s also the pedicures and the manicures. “We’ll do whatever you want,” he said. Pink gels with zebra print tips? Yup. Dark blue polish with yellow minions taking the lead on the big toe? Yup yup. Simple French? He’s got that, too. And Nguyen’s been doing it that way for 15 years. He said he feels lucky that his customers voted Marigold Nails the best of SLO County.

—Camillia

Runner up: MiniLux Nail Salon

BEST HEALTH CLUB/GYM

Kennedy Club Fitness

Paso Robles, Atascadero, SLO, Arroyo Grande

There are 11 treadmills, six TV’s, three studios for classes, and a plethora of super fine people of every age pumping straight iron, and that’s just in the SLO location. There are personal trainers, friendly staff, happy hour at the mini eating area, countless free weights, Kidz Klubs, saunas, yoga, basketball courts, pools, spin class, and occasional parties for their patrons. With clubs in four cities throughout the county, there are a variety of places and ways to get your sweat flowing. Insider’s secret? Zumba with Danya. 

—Rebecca

Runner up: Equilibrium Fitness

BEST YOGA STUDIO

Spark Yoga

977 Foothill Blvd., suite 111, SLO

Whether you’re a yoga newbie or an experienced pretzel, Spark Yoga will get you in position. Each class is heated to 98 to 100 degrees to make sure you’re drenched in sweat long before you’ve reached your second pose. If you’ve ever thought that sweating profusely in room with 30 people was gross, think again—it’s actually quite addicting. “SLO, you are awesome! We are so honored and overwhelmed with gratitude for the recognition,” said Steph Young, owner of Spark. “So much thanks to the community for all of the love and support. Thank you for sharing your sparkle and making our Spark family so incredibly special.”

—Kat

Runner up: Smiling Dog Yoga

BEST PLACE TO GET A MASSAGE

Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort and Spa

1215 Avila Beach Drive, SLO

Total relaxation comes to mind when thinking of Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort and Spa massages. Since the 1970s, the spa at Sycamore has doled out moments of zen ranging from body treatments to massages. All spa packages come with a complimentary 30 to 60 minute soak in naturally heated hillside hot tubs prior to your treatment. You can choose from deep-tissue to hot-stone massages, and they also offer specially designed massages for expecting mothers. “We’ve had therapists that have been here for 10 to 20 year that keeps bring people back for more,” said Barbie Maddox, the spa director.

—Giselle

Runner up: Dolphin Bay Resort & Spa

BEST PLACE TO GET WAXED

Wax Me!

1375 E. Grand Ave., No. 101, Arroyo Grande

Hey mamma, ever had the hair ripped by the root from your body? Sounds rough, right? Well, it is. Still, more and more people are opting for wax over shaving. Julie Irey who owns Wax Me! in Arroyo Grande said that Brazilian waxes are increasingly popular among women and men. “It hurts for about 10 minutes,” Irey said, “but the after effects … that’s why people get hooked.” Irey said there are ways to mitigate the pain too. Try skipping the coffee, for example, because caffeine will worsen the pain, take an ibuprofen ahead of time, and drink plenty of water. 

—Kylie

Runners up: Bluebird Salon & Spa, Savvi Spa

BEST PLASTIC SURGEON

Dr. Wally Hosn, Aesthetic Plastic Surgery Center

1250 Peach St., suite D, SLO

Dr. Wally Hosn and been rejuvenating patients for 13 years. “One of the best things about my job is that plastic surgery blends creativity, artistry, and benefits for the patient. I customize each surgery to the needs of each patient,” Hosn said. “Mine is a challenging but fulfilling field that brings a lot of satisfaction for my patients.” He also offers Botox and fillers, including new fillers like Restylane Silk for fine lines. He attends conferences and is on staff at Cleveland Clinic Foundation, where he trained. “I keep up with new procedures to offer my patients,” Hosn said. “I’m very honored readers voted for me!”

—Ariel

Runner up: Dr. Ke-Ping Tsao, MD F.A.C.S.

BEST PLACE FOR SKIN CARE

Dr. Bradley Kurgis

1320 Las Tablas Road, suite B, Templeton

Dr. Bradley Kurgis knows the skinny about skin! He and his experienced staff offer the latest in skin care including fillers, Botox, lasers, facials, microdermabrasion, and cosmetic dermatology. He also performs hair restoration and micro needling to treat acne, scarring, and fine lines and wrinkles. The doctor specializes in the treatment of skin cancer with Mohs micrographic surgery and performs photodynamic therapy for removing precancerous skin. “Skin cancer is the No. 1 cancer in the U.S., and most skin cancers are treatable,” Kurgis said. “We’re dedicated to making your skin- and hair-care experience the best possible. We treat you like family.”

—Ariel

Runner up: Savvi Spa

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