A New Year brings with it wonderful opportunities for change. To let go of or to embrace, Gastown is a neighbourhood of possibilities. The neighbourhood is home to many places of healing, restoration and holistic care.

If it’s external change you’re looking for, our salons and barbershops can transform you into something special. And maybe 2018 is when you finally get that tattoo you’ve been talking about. If permanent ink isn’t your thing,  you can turn your nails into little works of art and show them off to the world!


Mind, Body and Spirit –An escape into pure relaxation

In the wake of holiday madness, a retreat into the realm of serenity is vital. With the New Year only days old, a sense of banality, bleakness and the inevitable come down from “the party’s over” can be felt. One of the best gifts you can give yourself is time away from everything (that includes all electronic devices and social media). It’s you time right now and Gastown has a number of deeply restorative sanctuaries to bring you back into balance.


Check yourself into the Float House for some serious sensory deprivation and relaxation. The tanks are filled with 10” of warm water with 800 lbs of dissolved Epsom salts. Free from light and sound, you float for up to 90 minutes and sail away into blissful nothingness.


New to Gastown, Zenden is a unique meditation and yoga studio that uses sound along with colour therapy to guide you as you fearlessly open “the door to the other side”.

With stunning views of the North Shore mountains, the intimate studio boasts a frescoed ceiling mural illustrated with love by a talented local artisan. Along with the added use of crystal grids weaving in and out of the clouds, as well as powerful energies of the crystals and focusing sounds from resonant gongs, Zenden is everything you need to ferry you beyond to a deeper sense of consciousness.


If you’re feeling lumpy and out of alignment, a good massage will do the trick. Vancouver School of Bodywork & Massage offers some of the city’s most affordable massage services. Students of all levels perform a thorough assessment and practice various techniques including shiatsu, hot stone massage, and reflexology.


Metta Healing is one of the neighbourhood’s foremost centres for healing and restoration. Therapies include Acutonics  a sound healing modality based on the principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine, essentially ‘Acupuncture without needles’, Traditional Acupuncture, Traditional Chinese Medicine, Phytobiophysics – a comprehensive internal vibrational medicine therapy based on the healing properties of flowers and trees and Holistic Counselling.


There are plenty of gyms around and just as many yoga studios. Exercise is vital for a healthy life but so is spontaneity. And getting fit should be fun. For those who want to try something totally different from the norm and the clichéd: “Yeah….so for my New Year’s resolution I joined a gym” check out Gastown’s Tantra Fitness. Known as the Best Pole Studio in Greater Vancouver, Tantra offers a diverse range of classes in Pole Fitness, Dance Fitness and Aerial Arts.


Peek Into The Future

Perhaps while setting goals for 2018 you need a little hint, a nudge into what might be, a forecast ahead into your future. The Good Spirit offers tarot card readings. Set within a bright, warm and uplifting space, book 10-30 minutes with a number of intuitive readers, each different in their clairvoyance of the metaphysical realm.


Update Your Look

It’s a New Year and maybe time for a new hairstyle? The tried, tested and true can be your old faithful but why not try something bold, daring and different! Gastown is blessed with an abundance of professional salons and barbershops. Choose from such salons as Brush Salon, Colourbox, Pony Salon, Strands, Studio 38 and Sugar Skull Studio.


For the gentlemen, Gastown’s barbershops include Barber & Co, FortKnight Barbers, JD’s Barbershop, Gastown Grooming Room and Victory Barber & Brand.

For an affordable makeover, John Casablancas Institute and Aveda Institute offer salon services done at a fraction of the cost.


Love The Skin You’re In

Whether it be uncharted territory or you find yourself running out of uninked space on your body, a fresh tattoo can be a great way to kick off the New Year. Gastown’s tattoo parlours are open and inviting to everyone. The artists will help you with every step of the process and answer all your questions and concerns. Check out the mostly female run Liquid Amber Tattoo Parlour or the place with all the cool taxidermy and collectables, The Gastown Tattoo Parlour.

 Nail it!

If you’re feeling like your nails are looking pretty lacklustre, Queens Boutique in Gastown creates incredible manicures and nail art that goes way beyond the basic one-colour or French mani. Be inspired by one of their artists or create a visual theme to manifest a goal for the new year.