Wellness Watch

  • N4 Med Spa-Salon

    Located just steps from the East River in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, N4 Med Spa-Salon echoes the sentiment of organic, natural and locally sourced aesthetic comfort that has defined the neighborhood in recent years. The full service spa and salon offers varied services from massages and manicures to botox, tanning and tattoo removal.Robert Henry, http://www.rdh-architects.com, discusses his work at the N4 Med Spa-Salon


    “N4” stands for North 4th Street where the spa is located on the corner of Kent St. N4 has been tailored to the younger demographic of the neighborhood mixing both hair salon services with spa services and medical spa treatment. Clients were frustrated going from a place that did laser hair removal to a place that would do a manicure and pedicure, to a place which offers a massage, and finally, full salon services. This smaller, 2,000 square foot space offers it all in an intimate setting. (more…)

  • Relax – Rewind – Regenerate – Part 2

    Robert Henry, rdh-architects.com, describes elements used in spa therapy design.

    In my last blog, I discussed the design elements that we use to help clients make the transition from their hectic, stressed lives to a place of calm relaxation and regeneration. Once the client arrives at the treatment room, the transition continues, however the design of the treatment room must be two-fold. It needs to support and continue the relaxed and comfortable mood for the client while at the same time catering to the practical needs of the therapist.


    The massage table needs to be ergonomically adjustable to a tall or short therapist allowing them to give the client an optimal bodywork experience. From the client’s standpoint, the table must be comfortable with a high thread count cotton covering with a cradle for head and back support. (more…)

  • Relax – – Rewind – – Regenerate Part 1

    In terms of creating spa spaces, the key is differentiating from a client’s current conditions and surroundings. We want to create an environment that is conducive to a more relaxed experience that is reinforced throughout the whole spa treatment. What we do is try to change the whole physiognomy or the context of the space so that an individual can basically check their working or stressed life at the door and then transition to an experience or space that is just much more supportive of a relaxed, regenerative kind of mood. The rooms that we create are very different, incorporating as many of the senses as possible; an integration of serenity and calm.


    Robert Henry, http://www.rdh-architects.com, describes various design features to bring relaxation into the home.


    One of the things that is instantly important is to change the light level. In the hallway to the treatment area or rooms, or within your own home, we will drop the light level dramatically, helping the senses to become less stimulated. We create a focal point, at the end of the hall, that might be a water element or fire element, attracting  you, bringing you down the hallway to the treatment space.


    We make things simple and reduce clutter so as to calm the mind and body. In the changing room a whole ritual takes place. Clients change into a robe and slippers, again creating this transition from their stressed out working life into a more relaxed condition. In the treatment room we provide a place for someone to sit down; a therapist can offer the client tea. With some of our projects, we offer a warm towel to cleanse their face and hands or a bowl of water where they can soak their feet and receive a foot massage. It’s amazing how people instantly respond to that.


    Creating the tranquil space is really creating a psychological shift within the environment from where the client is coming from to where they are going. We mentioned adjusting the light levels, we integrate aromatherapy with calming music and eliminate distractions. Sometimes people prefer diffused light, other times they want a complete blackout and complete silence. It’s about tailoring and creating a room that provides flexibility and allows personalization. It fosters a “cocooning” environment, in which one feels safe, secure and relaxed.



    Robert Henry




  • Bringing Balance to Your Life

    Triggering the 5 Senses in Your Home


    Robert Henry Architects -  Bringing Balance to Your LifeI think there is a real synergy between the current high tech, high touch condition of our lives, which are so intensified by the new technology and our need to still search out and look for the aspects that make us human. We design a lot of spas and wellness projects with relaxed and regenerative environments that counter people’s stressful nanosecond driven day.   People visiting these projects ask, “How can I incorporate that into my daily existence? Could I bring that to my home?” The answer is yes.


    There are two ways to accomplish this; building an in-home spa as part of the master bedroom suite, or introducing simple spa elements to your existing master bath. We are doing several projects where the home becomes a sanctuary bringing peace of mind.


  • Engaging the Senses in Spa Design

    Robert D. Henry Architects - Engaging the Senses in Spa Design

    Our senses are continually bombarded with prompts to buy certain things, or vote a certain way, or think along certain lines. Blaring flat screen televisions, saturated with advertisements engineered to exploit the senses, have become ubiquitous wall fixtures in commercial settings from banks to sports bars. In such an environment of noxious, un-curated stimuli, it’s no wonder that more and more people are flocking to spas to quiet their minds and re-set their souls.


    As sanctuaries, spas require a different kind of architecture. In my work, I aim to make use of all five senses – not for cynical advertising ends, but as effective milieus to encourage both overt and subtle enhancements to a patron’s mood.  (more…)