By Alicia Dziak

The holidays are busy, fun, exciting and…stressful! When you want to get away from it all, Ellicottville has just the place for you—The Ellicottville Salt Cave, which is celebrating its first anniversary this month.

If you haven’t checked it out since it opened in November 2014, this weekend is the perfect time to do so, as they will be holding an open house on Saturday, Nov. 21 and Sunday, Nov. 22.

“A year ago this was just a vision,” said owner Tracy Draper. “Today I have been blessed to meet friendly clients who come from all over to experience my therapeutic atmosphere. Many return bringing family and friends. It’s a great feeling to be thanked for providing them with the gift of health and relaxation.”

For those who may not be familiar with the idea of a salt cave, Draper explained that, “Himalayan salt inhalation (halotherapy) has been known for centuries as a healing power for those suffering from respiratory ailments such as allergies, sinus, congestion, asthma, bronchitis, colds as well as dermatological ailments. Himalayan salt contains negative ions which are found at the ocean, waterfalls and electric storms. When we absorb these ions through inhalation, we create a mind and body balance. That’s why we feel good, mentally and physically, when we are at the beach.”

Customers can choose to lay back and relax in the Himalayan salt-tiled room while indulging in a soothing lemongrass foot scrub, warm achy muscles while lounging in the heat of an infrared sauna, relax with a warm salt stone massage, unwind in the therapeutic, cave-like room made of 15-20 tons of Himalayan salt imported from a salt mine in Asia…or all of the above!

In addition to these unique spa services, patrons can find a selection of items for sale.

“Our retail section offers great affordable gift ideas, including popular salt lamps that come in different sizes and shapes,” explained Draper. “They are natural ionizers that zap any dust or pollen in the air.  Salt lamps are popular in the bedroom where they can help with allergies as well as snoring. The soothing lamp color is also very calming and soothing.”

Most likely, someone — or many people — on your holiday shopping list would love to experience the Salt Cave, which Is the first of its kind in New York State. This weekend is a great time to get that gift certificate. On Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., enjoy a free gift with every gift certificate purchased. Customers can also enjoy snacks made with Himalayan salt.

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