Steam Cleaning

Sensory therapy for what ails you this winter

If last winter was the wettest we’ve had in a good long while, this one feels like the coldest. A bona fide snow day and a (nearly) white Christmas? Unheard of ‘round these parts. If the scarves and space heaters just aren’t cutting it, lose them altogether and heat up—while stripped down. Capitol Hill’s Hothouse Spa and Sauna is a ladies-only retreat, tucked beneath Pike Street’s Wild Rose bar and outfitted with a eucalyptus-scented steam room, a warm wood-benched dry sauna, a hot tub, a cold plunge, a relaxation area, heated floors, filtered water (with fresh lime wedges!) and massage therapy—all at affordable rates ($12 for one spa visit, massages extra). The no-boys-allowed coda also applies at Olympus Spa. With high-tech earth energy rooms (with names like “Far-Infrared Heated Energy Room”) and hydrotherapy pools, reap benefits such as increased blood circulation and expelling harmful toxins. It’s all coed, all the time at the Russian-style Banya 5 spa, however. Another benefit, in addition to the wet and dry heat experiences, and pool plunges they promise will be “a vivid circulatory experience”? Venik Lounge, their newly-opened bar, offers the chance to re-toxify with a vast selection of house-infused vodkas. Hothouse, 1019 E. Pike St., 568-3240,; Olympus Spa, 3815 196th St. S.W., Suite 160, 425-697-3000,; Banya 5, 217 Ninth Ave. N., 262-1234,

Tue., Jan. 15, 2008

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