“It’s kind of like a spa speakeasy,” Anna Zahn says with a laugh while welcoming me into the New York pop-up of her popular L.A. lymphatic drainage destination, Ricari Studios. Nestled in the back of a designer showroom five floors above the hubbub of Mercer Street, it doesn’t bear the neon signs or in-your-face storefronts all too familiar to Soho these days. Instead, the only indication that wellness seekers have arrived is a single jasmine-scented bed. Since opening last month, Ricari has become a holistic haven for Manhattan’s glitterati (think: Camille Rowe, Romee Strijd, and Dree Hemingway), who, through word of mouth, have sought out its body sculpting service for pre-red carpet appearances and post-transatlantic flights alike.
“I call it a sci-fi massage,” Zahn says of the cellular stimulation treatment, which is paired with sheer skinsuits (“very The Fifth Element!”) and performed with a towering Icoone, a new and improved version of the machine found in Ricari’s Beverly Hills headquarters. While both devices roll over the skin, boosting blood flow and circulation—not to mention, relaxing the nervous system—the updated device is equipped with three levels of stimulation and a whopping 38 settings to ensure that every client is receiving a tailor-made protocol, which can address everything from saggy skin and cellulite to scar tissue and muscle pain. (Imagine this editor’s delight when, following a 60-minute session, I suddenly had the makings of abs—something even my weekly Pilates sessions have never been able to achieve.) No surprise, then, that it’s quickly won over even the most skeptical of New Yorkers, who have convinced Zahn to open a permanent Manhattan space come spring.
“In Los Angeles, it can be all love and light, but this is just straight cellular stimulation,” says Zahn. “It’s not too woo woo; it’s a medical device.” And one, unlike its manual counterparts, it requires no pain threshold. “Everyone says, ‘If it hurts, it’s good! Harder is better!’ but we need more pleasure in our lives,” notes Zahn, who recommends pairing the feel-good, look-good treatment with simple at-home wellness techniques like dry brushing, hot baths, and, above all, lots of hydration and sleep. “Most people see something like this as a luxury, not a necessity,” she explains. “Oftentimes, people are coming in saying, ‘This is so indulgent, and I’m like: Well, is it? You’re really taking care of your body; you’re feeling better; you’re more relaxed; you’re working better; you’re looking better; you’re happier.... Isn’t that a good thing?’”
To book, visit ricaristudios.com.
Originally Appeared on Vogue