Whistler's newest spa focuses on quality over quantity

Whistler's newest spa and wellness centre is celebrating a successful first month. Ascent Wellness & Aromatherapy opened on May 1 and has become a fast favourite for locals.

Ascent offers a large variety of massage and esthetic services. The spa offers RMTs, an osteopath, cranial sacral therapists and spa therapists who specialize in deep flow, reflexology, aromatherapy, hot stone, thai massage. Ascent also features highly experienced estheticians.

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Owner Lindsay Walker has worked in Whistler spas over the past five years and saw a great opportunity to open her own business in a great location.

"We have gathered an excellent team that believes in quality over quantity and have collaborated our expertise to create this healing space," says Walker. "We aim to target the locals and earn their respect for offering quality massage and esthetic services at locals prices and always with smiles on our faces."

Located out of the busy Village and tucked in the back of Nesters Square, the space is quiet with free parking, easily accessible for people with injuries and open every day of the week. They are chemical and "anything unnatural" free in all of their services and products. Ascent uses organic, local, Fair Trade, sustainable products.

The main line of skin care products used is from Seaflora. Seaflora products are made in small amounts on Vancouver Island out of seaweed and local all natural botanicals and minerals. They are the only place in Whistler that sells the line. They also use organic coconut oil for their massages and a vegan nail polish line.

Retail-wise they have the largest selection of therapeutic grade organic aromatherapy essential oils in town. Specializing in Aromatherapy massages, Walker also makes hand-crafted custom blends available to purchase in massage oils, salt scrubs, soaps and body butters made to order so its as fresh as possible. For more information, you can stop by the spa, visit their website at www.ascentwhistlerwellness.com or call them at 604-938-9355.

Love Jules Leather makes a move

Whistler's Love Jules Leather has taken the leap to expand to Vancouver. The local shoe company has outgrown their Whistler garage-studio confines and is moving down to the city to set up shop in Chinatown.

Shoemakers and Whistler couple Julia Vagelatos and Josh Blodans are leaving Whistler with mixed emotions.

"This is our home, but we think the business needs a different type of fuel right now," says Vagelatos.

The local couple started the Jules Leather journey full time in 2009 by selling their leather accessories at the Whistler Farmers Market and small craft shows and fairs. They made a complete transition to a bespoke shoe company two years ago. It took off quickly and began selling pair after pair of custom shoes made from their seven silhouettes with sales predominantly based online.

The new shop offers them the space and a great atmosphere to create in a community of young artists and entrepreneurs. The new space is 1,050 square feet as opposed to their 350 square foot garage space. Their story and brand has been heavily covered in the press. They don the pages of Mountain Life Magazine, Vancouver Magazine, the Smith Journal, Elle France and most recently - The Globe & Mail's Report On Business.

The new shop is located at Unit #150-288 East Georgia Street and they invite all of their Whistler and area friends to come and check out their new digs. For more information on Love Jules Leather you can visit www.lovejulesleather or visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/LoveJulesLeather.

Fun season for OliveUs Glitter

OliveUs Glitter is preparing for a fun season ahead. The business, a favourite among kids, offers temporary glitter tattoos.

Owner and artisan Erin Worrod got her start last summer at the Pemberton farmers market where she quickly drew a crowd of young followers. When she wasn't set up at the market she could often be found plying her craft at parties and events for people of all ages - mostly in the Pemberton area.

With 30 colours of glitter and a large variety of stencils available this crafty business is a hit for the whole family. They can work with any theme to add a splash of colour to any occasion. This summer Worrod is taking the show on the road and will also have her services available in Whistler.

The Family Adventure Zone at the base of Blackcomb is opening soon and a mobile team of glitter artists will be there seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and on weekends from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. They will also appear on the stroll periodically throughout the season as part of the Whistler Arts Council's Street Entertainment program. In Pemberton, Worrod's team will soon be back at the Farmers Market on Wednesdays. For more information on OliveUs Glitter you can call 604-966-8457.

WB receives award for safe drinking water systems

Healthy, safe drinking water systems earned Whistler Blackcomb water operator Award of Excellence recently from the BC Water & Waste Association. A complete overhaul of mountain water systems has insured safe drinking water for visitors and staff.

NaTai Perdue, supervisor of snowmaking and water systems for Whistler Blackcomb has been recognized with the award for his leadership role in ensuring the quality and quantity of the potable water as well as the responsible use and conservation of ground water.

NaTai came to Whistler for the lifestyle, working as a lift operator, and then getting a job in snowmaking. He had no background in water operations, but learned quickly on the job. He sought out recognized training for himself and his staff and became a qualified water operator and ensured water was tested regularly to meet the health standards of the BC Drinking Water Protection Act.

"Our drinking water came from surface sources such as Archibald and Horstman Creeks,which were vulnerable to circumstances which could leave us without a safe water supply either temporarily or long term," he says. So he set out on a bold plan to upgrade and replace all six of the water systems. Within seven years all the surface sources were replaced with secure ground water wells as deep as 600 feet, which provide a more reliable, safer and better quality water supply. As well he implemented regular monitoring and testing plans and operations, including cross-connection controls.

Perdue also developed unique green hybrid water systems, using water from Whistler Blackcomb's extensive snowmaking infrastructure, which conserved both potable water and electricity.

For more information on the BC Water & Waste Association, you can visit their website at www.bcwwa.org.

To submit your business briefs you can email Tessa at tsweeney@whistlerquestion.com.

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