Saguaro Spa draws inspiration from ‘Four Directions’
NATIVE AMERICAN MEDICINE IS BASED ON RESPECT FOR THE LAND & EARTH
Influenced and inspired by their Native American heritage, Connie Hafenbredl and her daughter Alycia Schultz have developed a custom approach for their guests at Saguaro Day Spa in Sturgeon Bay.
The mother-daughter team and their staff of professionals were guided by the teachings of Misty Cook, a Native American medicine woman. Cook is the author of Medicine Generations: Natural Native American Medicines Traditional to the Stockbridge-Munsee Band of Mohicans Tribe. The wise lessons of Larry Madden, an Elder of the Mohican Nation, also influenced the thoughtful creation of services encompassing the four healing directions in their new menu of offerings, which were introduced in June 2017.
The staff at Saguaro Day Spa, along with generations of Native American tribes, use the Medicine Wheel, sometimes known as the Sacred Hoop, for health and rejuvenation.
“Our medicine wheel includes the ‘Four Directions’ and is representative of elements from Mother Earth and Mother Nature,” Alycia said. “At Saguaro, we believe in treating the mind, body and spirit. It is a holistic approach to treating the whole being.”
Each direction has a specific purpose as well as qualities that promote specific types of healing or attributes that are known to proactively help ward off different ailments. Traditionally, the Medicine Wheel encompasses four quadrants that symbolize the four seasons; the four cardinal directions of north, east, south and west; and the four sides of physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health. Self is at the center.
Connie gathers as well as grows the medicinal herbs that represent Saguaro Day Spa’s Four Directions of therapies used in their wide array of Custom Massage Journeys, Bodywork Journeys, Purification Journeys and Fassage Journeys. These medicinal plants are indigenous to Wisconsin and possess specific healing and rejuvenating qualities. Once dried, they are infused into oil and applied topically as part of the aromatic treatment therapies and include: North, represented in white and by cedar, unwinds a path of strength and acceptance of who we are. It is symbolic of air/wind, winter, spiritual health, elders and grandparents.
East, represented in yellow and by lavender, takes one on a journey to seek truth or one’s own story. A calming guide helps to awaken the possibilities that life has to offer. It is symbolic of fire, sacred tobacco, spring, mental health, earth and childhood.
“At Saguaro, we believe in
treating the mind, body and spirit.
It is a holistic approach to treating
the whole being.”
— Alycia Schultz
Medicinal herbs include some of the 58 herbal medicines traditional to the Stockbridge-Munsee tribe.
South, represented in red and by sweet grass, will enhance one’s focus, allowing a person to gain knowledge and understanding of themselves and the world around them. It is symbolic of earth, summer, physical health, youth and adolescence.
West, represented in black and by sage, brings the rain that cleanses and nurtures life, as well as the opportunity to experience and release emotions. It is symbolic of water, autumn, emotional health and adulthood/parents.
Many medicinal herbs can be found within Door County and on the land where Connie’s father grew up in Gresham and Red Springs, the site of the Stockbridge-Munsee reservation. Collected away from the beaten path and potential pollutants, these plants include some of the 58 herbal medicines traditional to the Stockbridge-Munsee tribe that are described in Cook’s book, Medicine Generations.
Native American medicine is based on respect for the land and earth. Dried plants are considered living. As one gathers roots, flowers, plants and stems, an offering of tobacco is given back to the earth as a gift for what has been harvested.
Massage therapist Melissa Milewicz believes the four directions provide wonderful opportunities for guests to experience the many journeys offered at the spa. Guests can choose a signature or customized service, and in combination with their choice of infused oil, the experience is crafted to the specific necessities and goals of the individual. Welcoming guests year-round, Saguaro Day Spa's Southwest-inspired sacred sanctuary allows one’s overloaded senses to be dissolved in a tranquil and healthy atmosphere.
At Saguaro, expansive windows and a deck overlook the countryside. Two spacious lounges with fi replaces create a calming backdrop while enjoying a cup of soothing tea or while focusing on self-awareness before and after treatments. As a guest at Saguaro Day Spa, one can engage in a variety of Fassage or Bodywork Journeys, select from a menu of customized massages, and unwind with services from the spa’s Hand and Foot Path offerings. Enhance the experience with a rejuvenating steam treatment to complete the healing journey.
Saguaro Day Spa has been known for more than 11 years as a “Destination for Healing.”
“Our goal is to offer services that cannot be found elsewhere in Door County,” Alycia said, “and remain true to our purpose and of treating the whole being.”