You'd never believe that the two-story home of Santé Aesthetics & Wellness in Northwest Portland's historic Spa Building building sat empty for years. Before the recession took its toll, an ambitious developer had built out a full-service spa in the former chapel and funeral home next to Saint Mary's Cathedral, only to close within a few months. When naturopathic doctor Marcea Wiggins saw the space—listed on the National Historic Register of landmarks, and complete with an empty light therapy alcove, a large soaking pool, and blank-canvas treatment rooms—she knew she'd found her oasis, and now she's ready to welcome the rest of Portland.
"When I first toured the building I was eight months pregnant with my twins," laughs Dr. Wiggins, who visited the space on a whim after a client had shown her the listing. "I wasn’t exactly out looking for a facility, it truly came to me. I told the property manager I couldn’t commit to anything but if it was still available in a few months to let me know and, sure enough, she called a few months after the birth of my twins...so Santé was born!"
Nestled next door to the Yoga Space's Northwest location, Santé aims to blur the lines between spa and medical office by offering naturopathic primary care, holistic facials and peels, dermatological and medical aesthetic services, massage therapy (from Swedish and shiatsu to hot stone and reiki), acupuncture, and an indulgent spa experience complete with soaking pool, cool dip pool, steam room, and UV light room.
Throughout her years of practice as a primary care naturopath, Dr. Wiggins found herself regularly referring patients to acupuncturists, massage therapists, and estheticians in order to address every aspect her patients' goals—and was inspired to build a sanctuary where all of these services could be provided under one roof. As for the spa pool and sauna, Dr. Wiggins and her team draw inspiration from international wellness rituals, seeing that people all over Asia, the Middle East, Eastern Europe, and beyond have utilized hydrotherapy and various body treatments for centuries to ensure their health and wellbeing. In these countries, Dr. Wiggins shares, "massage and soaking are not luxurious indulgences—but are instead a part of the daily culture of wellness."
210 NW 17th Ave.
Portland OR 97209