by Jonathan Vatner | July 01, 2004
spa robeNeed a stress-relieving theme for a corporate meeting or a product launch that will keep attendees present to the end? Create a spa atmosphere, suggests Marie Scalogna, president of Spa Chicks on the Go (212-252-5471;, a New York City-based company that brings the spa ambience to even the drabbest of spaces.
      Some of Scalogna’s suggestions for a spa-themed event:
     " Set up the room with candles, flowers and massage chairs. If fire codes prohibit lit candles, use the battery-operated varieties.
     " If budget permits, hire a designer to build curtained treatment rooms along the edges of the meeting area.
     " Eschew the harp music typically associated with spas and try something light and progressive, like Norah Jones or Everything but the Girl.
     " Hand out waffle-weave robes and logoed spa slippers. Comfortable clothing should be worn underneath, to keep the event professional. For a meeting, “any degree of nakedness is bad,” Scalogna says.
     " In tight spaces, use “floating” therapists who circle the room, massaging feet and necks. Offer chair massages as well as more obscure therapies such as Reiki and reflexology. Manicures and pedicures are popular, too.
     " Hire a caterer who specializes in light, healthful fare. Scalogna avoids catering fees by stocking up at SoHo’s gourmet market, Dean & DeLuca.
     " After an open spa session, massages should stop and the meeting should commence. Follow up with dessert. (Scalogna prefers brownies.)
     " After the event, hand out gift bags with items such as moisturizers, foot creams or eye pads that can be refrigerated. “Everybody gets excited about the goodie bags,” says Scalogna.