News & Politics

Let the Spa Come to You

What could be easier than having a massage therapist or facialist make a house call? And why not invite friends and make it a party? These firms provide therapists and handle all the details.

If getting pampered at a spa sounds good but prompts guilty thinking along the lines of “It’s tough enough to make time to see friends, let alone pop off to treat myself to spa treatments,” then consider hosting a spa party in your home.

Organizing a party can be as simple as inviting a few friends over for martinis and manicures—you supply drinks and nibbles and hire a licensed nail technician; guests foot the bill for individual services.

Prefer something more mellow? You can hire a massage therapist to set up in a spare bedroom or den. Guests take turns getting treatments and mingling in robes. You might offer organic foods, teas, and water with electrolytes. Cynthia Shobutte, director of Well Being Massage & Spa in DC, says hydration is key: “Especially after a massage, it is really important to help continue the removal of toxins.”

You can ask nail technicians, estheticians, and massage therapists at your favorite salon if they make house calls—many do. Natural Body Spa (, for example, offers mobile services for groups of 20 or more. To arrange, call the manager of the Natural Body nearest you—there are locations in Ashburn, Potomac, Northwest DC, and Arlington—or e-mail (Some spas, like Natural Body and Serenity Day Spa, also arrange private parties at the spa, with catered food.)

Does the task of planning a party stress you out? These three firms plan spa parties. We’ve included sample costs; figure on adding about 15 percent for tips.

Whether throwing the party yourself or hiring a planner, you might want to ask service providers if they are insured and if they are certified or licensed for the chosen services in the county where you live. Regulations also vary as to what a therapist can do in the home; Maryland law, for example, prohibits nail technicians from trimming cuticles, so you’ll have to stick to polish changes and hand/foot rubs. 

Wright Touch Travelling Spa


Sisters Juanita Ahaghotu and Joanna Wright specialize in “girls’ night in” parties for groups of six or more. They recommend a menu of 20-minute facials, nail polishes, and massage so that no one is excluded from socializing for long. Two-service (minimum) packages start at $75 a person; three-service packages start at $125.

The sisters create their own aromatic blends of creams and oils. If the party concept is Hawaiian, expect to smell pineapple in face and foot creams. 

Well Being Massage & Spa


This firm’s specialty is on-location massage; clients include politicians and DC businesswomen. Based at the downtown DC JW Marriott, Well Being director Cynthia Shobutte says the company can stage mobile spa parties in the District and Northern Virginia.

At-home services, she says, might include “mini-therapeutic treatments on a massage table like foot scrubs, back scrubs, aromatherapy and head, neck, and face massage.” She can also put together product bags for guests to take home. Parties start at $105 an hour per therapist, three hours minimum. 

Haydee James


Esthetician Haydee James enjoys a reputation as an eyebrow-waxing guru. She works from her McLean home or at your place. Because her eyebrow service takes only 15 minutes a person, you can invite 6 to 20 people for a leisurely afternoon. Each set of eyebrows costs $25.


Exclusive Reader Deal

Noufal Hair Color Studio in Vienna is offering readers of The Washingtonian a free $100 gift card.

Mention the Noufal Pampering Program when making an appointment and when you arrive you’ll get a $100 gift card that can be used in $25 increments over four visits. The $25 can be applied to any men’s or women’s hair service, such as a cut, coloring, or extensions.

There is no minimum purchase—you can get the $25 off a men’s haircut or women’s blow-dry, both of which start at $35. The gift card is not valid on products or on nail, face, or body services.

Noufal Hair Color Studio, 8605 Westwood Center Dr., Suite 160, Vienna; 703-893-7711;


This article is part of the 2008 Great Day Spas Package. To read more articles like it, click here