Fri08012014

News

"Brown is the new green," says local water district


Lina Broydo/Special to the Town Crier
Are downtown Los Altos flower pots getting too much water? The Santa Clara Valley Water District plans to hire “water cops” to discourage overwatering.

The Santa Clara Valley Water District is spending nearl...

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Schools

Foothill camps prepare local students for STEM careers

Foothill camps prepare local students for STEM careers


Photos Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Middle school students make robotic hands using 3-D printers during a STEM Summer Camp at Foothill College.

From designing roller coasters to developing biodegradable plastics, high school students received an i...

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Community

Local entrepreneur opens home to Afghan and Rwandan women

Local entrepreneur opens home to Afghan and Rwandan women


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Businesswomen Joan Mazimhaka of Rwanda, third from left, and Fakhria Ibrahimi of Afghanistan, in orange, traveled to the U.S. with a 26-woman delegation through the Peace Through Business program.

Employees scoop ice ...

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Comment

Moving on: The Rockey Road

Just over a month ago, we decided to put our house on the market. My husband and I had been tossing around the idea of moving back to the area where we grew up, which is only approximately 40 minutes from here. Of course, Los Altos is a great place t...

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Special Sections

Long live the lawn: Los Altos native offers drought-resistant strategies

Long live the lawn: Los Altos native offers drought-resistant strategies


Bill Steiner’s grass is green, left, even amid the drought. He followed Max Todd’s water and maintainence instructions after having his lawn aerated, Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier

Green lawns are not necessarily on the endangered list during the d...

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Business

Halo heads to Los Altos: Blow-dry bar founder opens new First Street location Monday

Halo heads to Los Altos: Blow-dry bar founder opens new First Street location Monday


ElLie Van Houtte/ Town Crier
Armed with blow dryers, Halo founder Rosemary Camposano, left, and store manager Nikki Thomas prepare for the blow-dry bar’s grand opening on First Street Monday.

A blow-dry bar is set to open downtown Monday, and i...

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Books

"Frozen in Time" chronicles harrowing WWII rescue attempts


Many readers can’t resist a true-life adventure story, especially those that shine a spotlight on people who exhibit supreme courage in the face of adversity and end up surviving – or not – against the odds.

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People

DR. ALFRED HUGHES

Long time Los Altos resident, Dr. Alfred Hughes, died May 1st after a long illness. Dr. Hughes was born in 1927 in Maspeth, NY. He served in the US Army from 1945-6, attended Brooklyn Polytechnic University, then graduated from Reed College in Portla...

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Travel

Travel Tidbit: Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe offers spa getaway

Travel Tidbit: Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe offers spa getaway


Courtesy of Ritz-Carlton
The Ritz-Carlton in Lake Tahoe offers fall getaway packages that include spa treatments and yoga classes.

Fall in North Lake Tahoe boasts crisp mornings and opportunities to spend quality time in the mountains. Specially ...

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Stepping Out

'Wizard' winds down at Bus Barn

'Wizard' winds down at Bus Barn


Town Crier file photo
Local actors rehearse a scene from “The Wizard of Oz.”

Los Altos Youth Theatre and Los Altos Stage Company’s collaborative production of “The Wizard of Oz” is slated to close Sunday at Bus Barn Theater, 97 Hillview Ave.

T...

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Spiritual Life

Stanford University appoints new dean for religious life

Stanford University appoints new dean for religious life


Shaw

Stanford University named the Very Rev. Dr. Jane Shaw, dean of Grace Cathedral in San Francisco, its new dean for religious life.

Provost John Etchemendy announced Shaw’s appointment July 21, adding that she also will join the faculty in...

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Magazine

Festival features fun for everyone

Festival features fun for everyone


TOWN CRIER FILE PHOTO
The Los Altos Arts & Wine Festival boasts more than 375 craft and arts booths.

This weekend’s 35th annual Los Altos Arts & Wine Festival promises to be jam-packed with fun activities for just about everyone. The eve...

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New Years resolution: Reduce stress at local day spa


Photo By: Eren Gknar/ Special to the Town Crier
Photo Eren Gknar/ Special To The Town CrierYelena Dukarevich works as a technician at Salon Elizabeth, a downtown Los Altos day spa that offers body wraps, massages and anti-aging facials.

January draws people to the gym, making treadmill space rare and kale a scarce commodity at Safeway. Along with the typical New Year’s resolutions that involve self-sacrifice, though, psychologists say it’s important to reduce stress.

What better way to do that than to spend time at local day spas? Perhaps not as much fun as a week at Miraval in Tucson or Ojai, but less financial stress in the future.

Julie Rose, president of the Los Altos Chamber of Commerce, noted that the city has so many beauty and nail salons that five years ago the city council passed a resolution prohibiting new ones on Main and State streets. Those that close can’t be replaced by similar businesses.

“I don’t know how many day spas we have,” she said, but none is a member of the chamber.

Orchid Bloom Spa

As a service to local readers, this reporter checked out the exotic-sounding Orchid Bloom Spa, 107 Main St. In the interest of full disclosure, I have experienced the spa’s $85 aromatherapy body massage. Prices in general are reasonable, and longtime customers receive email specials. In addition to massages, the spa features facials, microdermabrasion and bridal makeup and services.

A quick check of Yelp showed reviewers’ high marks for the $55 Ayurvedic Indian Head Massage, a 30-minute technique that massages hot oil into the scalp. The therapist also kneads the shoulders, arms, neck and face. Sounded good, but I wanted more time.

My nighttime appointment delivered an additional helping of mystery created by the black and bamboo Thai wall coverings. You walk in to a wall full of Priori facial and Ilike organic facial products, and the receptionist sits behind the counter to the right.

Lali, my massage therapist, gave me a 60-minute Thai massage, which involved my changing into a tank top and pants and lying on a mat on the floor. From there, she used an ancient technique favored by Thai royalty to stretch and bend my arms and legs.

Unlike the Thai Swedish massage – $85 for 60 minutes, $125 for 120 minutes – which uses oil, the plain Thai technique relies on pressure points for stress relief. The brochure says it’s good for headaches and insomnia, and I was ready for bed at the end.

The spa packages offered include:

• Heart and Soul, a $140, 90-minute combination of custom massage, Reiki, head and foot rub, and Thai facial massage.

• Relaxations, a $120, 90-minute cocktail of body massage and wrap with a head and foot massage thrown in.

• Spa After Flight, for jet-setters, a $100, 75-minute Swedish massage mixed with a foot and head massage.

• Jasmine Therapy, a $140, two-hour jasmine body exfoliation, aromatherapy hand, foot and face massage.

Orchid Bloom Spa is open 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays.

For more information, visit orchidbloomspa.com.

Salon Elizabeth

Salon Elizabeth, another respite from the storms of everyday life, is located at 381 First St., across from Draeger’s Market.

The salon offers anti-aging treatments, including Elizabeth’s signature $145 facial with choice of collagen mask and vitamin C or DNA application. You can also have an intense pulsed-light photofacial rejuvenation, which addresses sun damage and hyper-pigmentation in five to eight recommended sessions.

In addition to several other advanced anti-aging facials, the spa offers the following getaway procedures.

• A $98 French seaweed body wrap, a European thalassotherapy treatment that some say takes weight off.

• An hour-long $98 enzyme body mask, which uses botanical blends to soften the skin and leave it silky.

• A $120 full-body exfoliation called the Tangerine Lavender Body Glow, which the literature promises to be “luxurious and relaxing.”

For more information, visit salaonelizabeth.com.

Yelka Day Spa for Men and Women

Yelka Day Spa for Men and Women, located at 2049 Grant Road, reports that it uses only organic and vegan products.

The spa is among the few that provide 50-minute $95 Mom-to-Be massages – $150 for 80 minutes.

Its Aqua Thermal trio massage uses heat, aromatherapy and foot massage for a special experience. It costs $95 for 50 minutes, $145 for 80 minutes.

Antiaging facials like the $155 Lavender Thermal and Pearl Silk Collagen, which promises to “treat your skin like Cleopatra,” purport to make you look younger.

If you need real improvement, sign up for the three-hour Ultimate Decadence, which will set you back $760 and have you lifted and glowing.

For more information, visit yelkadayspa.com.

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