In the summertime we tend to indulge, as we break away from our routine and embark on exciting getaways to explore new destinations (and oftentimes new restaurants). But wellness doesn’t have to fall by the wayside when you’re traveling. From exercising in the open air to special spa treatments and taking care of your skin in the South Florida sunshine, there are plenty of ways to stay healthy in the warmer months here in Miami. (After all, we have so many of them.)
To learn more about summer wellness, we spoke with Caline Assilian, the mindbody Spa Director at Loews Miami Beach Hotel’s exhale Spa. With a background in business and acupuncture therapy, Assilian has led the exhale South Beach location at Loews Miami for over three years but has actually been with exhale Spa for six.
Here are her top tips for a healthy summer in South Florida.
What are some of the best ways to exercise and enjoy the outdoors in Miami?
1. Beach Yoga: I definitely recommend beach yoga, which we offer twice a week in the mornings at 7:15 AM. Because we’re right here on the beach, you have the ability to walk onto the sand from the back gate of the hotel and do a really special yoga class. Anytime you add the element of nature to a practice like that, it really elevates the experience.
2. Meditation: Our meditation class is outdoors, on our Zen roof terrace, where you have the ocean view and the sky above you, so you have all those elements of nature in your practice. We have a daily 9 AM meditation class that’s complimentary for all Loews guests who have the Resort Amenity Package; it’s $10 for locals and everyone else. Meditation is an essential factor in anything to do with wellness because of the mind-body connection. Anything that’s meditative is going to be positive and beneficial for your mental state, which will then positively affect your physical body.
3. Walking or Jogging: I think just walking on the beach is the best way to incorporate mind and body and nature. You can literally walk along the water, and if you go in the early morning or late day, it’s a very peaceful time on the beach. Walking or light jogging on the sand is good exercise because the sand makes it more of a challenge for you. It’s also better for your joints.
4. Parks: South Pointe Park is a really great place to be outside. There are always people out there doing yoga and fitness workouts. A lot of people do acro-yoga there. We’re also going to start doing a monthly outdoor yoga class at Soundscape Park [an urban park outside of the New World Symphony Center] — again doing a yoga class in a natural setting.
5. Bike riding: You can ride your bike along the boardwalk from 24th Street all the way down to South Pointe Park on 1st Street and around the corner to where the bay and marina are.
How do you recommend people take care of their skin in a sunny climate like ours?
One of the most important things is using sunblock or sunscreen. MD Solar Sciences and Coola are two phenomenal lines of sunscreen that have products for both face and body. They’re organic, they’re natural, and they have a really good lightweight consistency. Especially with face sunscreen, since you’re putting it on your face, you want to make sure it’s a high-quality product, and you want it to be organic as much as possible. These are quality sunscreen lines, and Coola products even come in different tropical scents, like piña colada.
Also make sure to wear a hat. I always wear a hat when I go outside.
What do you recommend for after we’ve been in the sun?
Repairing your skin after sun exposure is key; exhale offers face or body skincare treatments, like the After Sun Facial, which was specifically designed for when you’ve been in the sun. It uses hyaluronic acid, green tea extract and aloe vera. It really works to hydrate your skin and calm any inflammation that resulted from the sun exposure. Also, the Glow Body Scrub uses a citrus-based scrub, which is really important for exfoliating your skin. When you’ve been in the sun, you’re really building up all those dead skin cells, and you want to makes sure you’re exfoliating to keep your skin healthy.
We also have a new Cool+Calm poolside therapy, which is a great way to tie wellness into your daily routine. You don’t have to go out of your way from what you’re doing at all. You’re there at the pool and it’s super convenient. It’s 20 minutes, so if someone doesn’t want to take an hour out of their day to do a spa therapy or fitness class, they can do this very easily. It uses cold stones, a chilled ice pack, neck and shoulder massage, and pressure point activation, and then it also involves an application of Aloe Vera and SPF.
Acupuncture is really phenomenal because it treats you on every level, and it also can treat everything and anything that somebody wants to address. It can combine treating any kind of pain that you have, it releases stress, and it boosts immunity. It can treat any kind of digestive problem, respiratory problem, sleep problems or insomnia. It addresses all of the problems you might be experiencing in one session. Now, I have to make it clear that that doesn’t mean everything is going to be miraculously fixed — but it is a comprehensive and holistic treatment in the sense that you are treating the whole body.
In the summer through the end of August, everyone can take advantage of our Miami Spa Month offers. Spa Month packages are $109 and $139, so it gives people the opportunity to experience various types of therapies for a much lower rate than it normally is. For each of our packages, there’s a spa component to it (massage, facial, mani-pedi or acupuncture) and a fitness component to it (two free classes or a one-month unlimited fitness membership), so you get both aspects from the package.
Learn more about exhale Spa’s Miami Spa Month offers here.
Note: Interview has been edited for clarity and brevity.
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