Drs. Nia Banks and Aderonke Omotade have been friends for years. They met at a conference in med school and now vacation together at Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts each summer. Banks is a board-certified plastic surgeon, Omotade is a board-certified internal medicine physician and psychiatrist.
But by 2018, both had been in the medical field for over a decade and were craving something new. One day, they struck up a conversation at Martha’s Vineyard.
“Being in Martha’s Vineyard, days where you wake up and all you have to do is take care of yourself is such a lovely experience,” Banks says. “I thought it would be nice to have this all the time, this experience, and share with other people the sense of being mindful and whole, being yourself.”
Omotade was totally on board and, after a bit of research and further brainstorming, they discovered what they wanted to do was provide a wellness spa accessible to all people regardless of gender or age.
“We really want people to take care of themselves, to take time to be in spaces that respect the right for self-care,” says Banks. “It shouldn’t be a privilege or occasion, but it should be a part of your regular balanced routine.”
Over the next year in a half, the pair worked on an idea: They would combine their specialties to bring that same sense of holistic wellness they felt in Massachusetts to their home in Baltimore. Art of Balance Wellness Spa is more than the average spa. Broken down into three pillars, it offers modern aesthetics, wellness therapies, and spa experiences.
“We bring all of these resources together; we can individualize and customize a treatment for each individual,” says Omotade.
At Art of Balance, you’re able to take care of your full self all in one location. For example, you might join their weight loss program. Post-workout, you’re welcome to book a massage or acupuncture treatment to relieve any physical and emotional tension. Then, maybe at the end of your journey, you want to tone up—head down the hall and take advantage of a range of body contouring treatments.
The concept of holistic wellness isn’t unique, but this kind of spa is relatively new to Baltimore. And after spending months designing a relaxing and open atmosphere, scouring Baltimore for the best estheticians and wellness practitioners, and testing all of their new services to ensure they keep to their medical-grade promises, this spring, they’re open for business at The Ritz-Carlton Residences in Federal Hill. The spa is currently open at 50 percent capacity by appointment only.
It may not be a summer in Martha’s Vineyard, but it’s the next best thing.