Revive the Body and Mind - A Wellness Weekend in Hamilton
We all need to take a little time for ourselves every now and again. Wellness is easy to overlook when we’re busy, but taking care of ourselves is oh-so-important. Gone are the days when a gym session or fruit smoothie were the only ways we can do good by our bodies, instead they’ve been replaced with the idea of filling our cups, and we are here for it!!
Words by: Nicole Mudgway
The list below still covers both moving your body and eating nourishing food in some shape or form but also includes personal pampering, educational experiences and serene spots for you to do what you need to do in order to restore your wellness and refill your cup. Hamilton has so much more to offer than what people give the city credit for and is a surprisingly rewarding destination for a wellness weekend.
Lab Brows + Body
302 Barton Street, Hamilton Central, Hamilton
At Lab Brows + Body, the team is expert in all things brow. Not to mention lashes, waxing, nails and tanning. It’s hard to miss: the brightly coloured, patterned exterior jumps out on Barton Street, and the fun vibe continues inside, with equally bright walls and pops of colour everywhere you look. They built their reputation on performing brow treatments: whether you are after groomed and sleek, fluffy and natural or something in between, the team will make their expertise look effortless. Performing hundreds of brow treatments every month is a surefire sign that they are the best in the business.
36 Ward Street, Hamilton Central, Hamilton
High Above takes exercise, and fun, to a whole new level. A boutique fitness studio specialising in both aerial and pole classes, High Above offers something for every level of fitness and experience. The pole classes are similar to dance classes with an extra dose of strength and flexibility, whereas the aerial yoga classes use a waist hammock to help you reach new heights. Literally. No problem if you have zero interest in the fitness component - just focus on the fun and book your next event, birthday or even hen party with High Above. Learn a beginner routine with your crew and round it out with a demo from your instructor, some nibbles and a glass of bubbly (or two).
1/394 Grey Street, Hamilton East, Hamilton
Sun Salute is a yoga studio focusing on the art of Ashtanga yoga, as well as Hatha, Yin and Viniyoga sessions.
Offering some time out from the busy grind of our daily lives, the studio is a peaceful space with natural wooden walls, a fernery and a communal area with comfy sofas and shelves of books. There are classes for every age and stage, including a ‘Mums n Bubs’ session, as well as a class for children to encourage strength, flexibility and balance from a young age. Check their website for prices and class times.
Riverbank Lane, 298 Victoria Street, Hamilton Central, Hamilton
If losing yourself in the smells, sounds and feelings of a well-stocked bookshop sounds like a dream, then Browsers is the place for you.
A diverse array of quality secondhand books line the shelves and comfy leather couches add to the cosy and nostalgic atmosphere. Each pre-loved book has been carefully chosen by the knowledgeable team who has an uncanny ability to recall where it now lives in the shop. The variety of books never ceases to amaze - whether you’re after a book about Māori history or a piece of light-hearted fiction, Browsers will probably have more than one option for you to mull over. Come for a browse, and stay for a while.
Hungerford Crescent, Hamilton East, Hamilton
Commonly regarded as Hamilton’s premier activity, it’s not hard to see why - Hamilton Gardens manages to incorporate history, beauty and fresh air all in one go. The gardens are also incredibly family-friendly, conveniently located and free of charge.
Broken up into five different sections, each series of gardens offers something different, from a slice of life, a piece of history to a cultural experience. Conveniently set out so you can pretty much just meander around one looping route, it's an extremely peaceful way to spend a couple of hours. Take a picnic, or go for a wander and get lost in an eclectic wonderland.
220 Tristram Street, Hamilton Central, Hamilton
Replenish your body (and your mind) at Frank, where serving nourishing, wholesome food and coffee is all in a day's work.
They say the devil is in the detail, but at Frank, not a single item has gone unconsidered. From the comfy olive green velvet booth seats to the speckled salt shakers and gold cutlery, the decor is unique, cohesive and charming. It’s the perfect place to relax, people watch, dine al fresco in the quaint courtyard, or escape with a novel in one hand and a cuppa in the other. The food is similarly impressive - just like its name, it’s honest, undisguised and tastes as good as it makes you feel.
Fox Kennedy Barbers
298 Victoria Street, Hamilton Central, Hamilton
Wellness days are not just for the ladies: at Fox Kennedy Barbers the boys can treat themselves to some personal pampering.
Fox Kennedy, a barbershop located in the old Riverside Mall, radiates modern luxury and indulgence. With old-fashioned barber chairs, long mirrors and tidy concrete floors, every treatment will leave the men feeling more suave and sophisticated. The barbers pride themselves on providing a bespoke service, using traditional and modern techniques to create a personalised haircut for each customer. Haircuts and styling are both by appointment only, so check out their website for booking details.
Level 5, Panama Square, Hamilton Central
A last-minute tattoo might not be on everyone’s agenda, but even if you’re not after some spontaneous body art popping into Holiday Tattoo on the fifth floor of Panama Square is worth the detour. An absolute feast for the eyes, Holiday Tattoo is a beautiful space, lush with plants and wall art showcasing the talent of the resident artists. It’s home to some of the area's best tattoo artists, so if you are interested in getting inked, be sure to contact them in advance. Otherwise, soak up the beauty, and you’d be missing out if you didn’t make one further detour to the pink-tiled bathrooms.
1 Grantham Street, Hamilton Central, Hamilton
Discover the history and tales of the region at Waikato Museum. Featuring varied galleries with dozens of new exhibitions and public events each year earns this museum the reputation of a year-round, all-weather attraction.
Visitors can experience stories of the region, nation and wider world, with a special focus on art, social history, tangata whenua and science. There are floor talks, Māori arts and crafts workshops, concerts and lectures. It’s a great place to learn something new and an easy spot to lose track of a few hours.
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Last Place Bar
If you picture a 1980s RSA (but cool) merged with an old-school American dive bar, you might land somewhere not too far off the vibe at Last Place.
Founded by competitive pole dancer and qualified AntiGravity Fitness Instructor Laura Lockhart, High Above is a fitness hub like no other. Specialising in both aerial and pole classes, working out here is all about getting fit through having fun.
The Chilli House
This (not so) hidden gem located in the CBD of Hamilton is somewhere you’ll want to put on your to-do list if you are traveling to Hamilton any time soon.