You dont have to be a Hollywood A-lister to sweat at Shape House, a one of a kind urban sweat lodge, where guests are wrapped in special infrared blankets and cut-off from society for 60 minutes.
Located in an unassuming house in one of LAs swankiest neighborhoods, this day spa has been heating up reality TV screens with appearances on The Kardashians and Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. A perfect fit since they promisereduced stress, improved skin and rapid weight loss – all for only $45 a session.
Like I am about most things, I was skeptical.The thought of being wrapped up like a human sausage, heated to 165 F, and placed in front of a TV sounded like something youd see down the street at the Scientology Centre. But with big name celebrity endorsements and lofty promises, I thought, what the heck, beach season is right around the corner.
Upon arriving, I was given a 1980s sweat suit to change into and was very carefully tucked into my bed. After I was left alone, I turned my TV to the latest episode of HBOs Girls and within minutes I was sweating – profusely.
I tried to focus on the TV show, but when that didnt work Iattempted to turn inward and focus on my breathing. About halfway through the session, all I could think about was escaping and heading straight for a swim off the PCH. Instead, I toughed it out, finished my episode of Girls, and rolled myself out of the soaking hot bed.
I haphazardly made my way over to the decompression room, and immediately chugged an entire bottle of water, a large tea, and a complimentary orange. It felt like I had just completed a 90-minute hot yoga class, but in reality I had just caught up on some TV. I would compare the sensation to being in a very intense infrared sauna, without the dry hot air in your face.
I left the spa on a positive note, feeling refreshed and unplugged. But, I couldnt help but think – is this just another fad?
As it turns out, the technology has been popular in France for a number of years – it was originally used by medical professionals to treat patients with broken bones and help speed up recovery time.
Owner Sophie says business is booming and shes currently in the process of opening a third location. So although it might be unusual by North American standards, it was definitely enjoyable.
Whether youre visiting or live in the city of angels, Shape House LA is definitely worth the sweat (and a visit back to the 80s with the suit).
When will the urban sweat lodge spa craze hit north of the border? Place your bets in the comments below.