2017’s Best of Rhode Island!

Editors and readers name their picks for the state's best spots for food, shopping, fun and beauty.


Health & Wellness: Spin, Pamper and Meditate Your Way to a Healthy State of Mind and Being.

Old Fashioned Shave


Barber Francisco Perez gives a shave and a haircut at Gents.

Taking inspiration from the traditional barbershop, Gents offers a variety of services from a simple haircut to a good old-fashioned hot shave (which involves steaming towels, foaming lather and a facial massage). If the straight razor has you feeling nervous, relax with one of the Swedish or deep-tissue massages beforehand. 1000 Chapel View Blvd., Cranston, 654-4700

Alternative to the Gym
Jounce Fitness

If you’re pining for childhood days of leaping about on your trampoline, reminisce no more. Jounce Fitness pairs a potent cardiovascular workout with the fun of carefree bouncing. But the studio’s focus on trampolines isn’t purely for recreation: Trampoline-based exercise has been proven by NASA to have unique health benefits compared to more conventional workouts. 39 Putnam Pike, Johnston, 787-4665, jouncefitness.com

Get-Your-Butt-In-Shape Gym
Pulse Fitness Studio

Pulse Fitness Studio is not a do-what-you-please gym; it is a training studio that offers classes, boot camps and private training sessions that whip your body into shape. Fitness experts from all over Aquidneck Island contribute their experience to offer a variety of workouts, from intense rowing sessions to high-energy barre classes. 1 Casino Terr., Newport, 847-5831, pulsenewport.com

bestNew Juice Bar
STR8 Juicin

Don’t let the hardcore name fool you: STR8 Juicin is a friendly shop open to gym junkies and average joes alike. The juices and smoothies are made with fresh ingredients and are as healthy as they are delicious. In addition to the sumptuous drinks, STR8 Juicin offers a number of soups, sauces and even meatballs if you want to splurge a little. 1132 Main St., Coventry, 615-0401, facebook.com/str8juicin

Strength Training Gym
What is Movement

Too often strength training is associated with grunting behemoths slamming weights around, but it doesn’t have to be. At What is Movement, workouts combine yoga techniques, balance and kettlebells. This more holistic approach not only builds strength, but improves overall wellness, by increasing mobility, flexibility and energy. For a more individualized service, choose a personal training session. 22 Dewey Ave., Warwick, 519-5122, whatismovement.com

Pregnancy Massage
Harmony on Hope

Pregnancy takes a toll on your body: Abdominal pain, swollen feet and frayed nerves are common occurrences. Mothers-to-be looking for a brief respite can enjoy one of Harmony on Hope’s specially designed pregnancy massages. The side-lying Baby Mama massage soothes the most affected parts of the body and includes a foot exfoliation. 335 Hope St., Providence, 270-8877, harmonyonhopemassage.com

Teen Pilates Class
Studio47 Pilates

Being a teenager is rough. Your body is changing and parents get on your nerves with all their “You need to get off the couch, come to my zumba class!” talk. Is there a way to get the blood pumping without resorting to crashing your mom’s workout group? Studio47 Pilates has a solution: Teen Time Pilates, a class for teens only, with allowance-friendly prices. The program allows teens to get active with their peers, learn a fun new exercise regimen and feel good doing it. 47 Maple Ave., Barrington, 289-2787, studio47pilates.com

Brazilian Wax Spot
The Wax Pot

It’s not easy to deal with unwanted hair *ahem* down there. Leave it to the experts and head to the Wax Pot to make your nether regions Barbie doll smooth. While you’re there, you can indulge in other services, whether it is a peel, facial or ultrasonic microdermabrasion. 422 Main St., Warren, 289-2550, thewaxpots.com

Local Bath and Beauty Boutique
Soap and Water

Forget the chain body goodies stores that hit you with an overwhelming preponderance of lotion scents as soon as you step foot inside: Soap and Water takes convenience and mixes it with quality products. With trusted brand names (Crabtree and Evelyn, Archipelago Botanicals) and an array of lotions, perfumes, shaving wares and accessories (Ugg Australia products, RightSide Design Pillows), this is a one-stop-shop for taking pampering to the next level. 16 Bowens Wharf, Newport, 619-5514, soapandwaternewport.com

Salon For A Fresh Hair Start
Ky Michaels Salon

Changing your hair is a great way to get a fresh start, but it can also be terrifying going the bleach blond shade you’ve always wanted. That’s where Ky Michaels comes in. With a staff that specializes in all things hair and with a keen eye for making your hair color flawless, your locks will be in safe and capable hands. 442 Wickenden St., Providence, 228-3808, kymichaelssalon.com

Yoga Deal
Rhode Island Yoga Center

Way more uplifting than PB and J at your desk, the Rhode Island Yoga Center offers a forty-five minute lunch-break yoga class every weekday at 12:30 — and it only costs a measly $5. Wearing makeup? They turn on the AC for us office drones. Forgot cash? Just prepay online. Meeting run long? We can’t help you there, but we can promise that even when you have to rush, class always makes you feel like there’s more time (and space, and light) in the day than you thought. You’ll be adding this class to your lunch routine in no time. Kingston Emporium, 99 Fortin Rd., South Kingstown, 284-0320, riyogacenter.com

Health Food Grocery Store
The Green Grocer

bestThis is your organic, healthy grocery store but without the snobbery that often comes with it. At the Green Grocer, you’ll find goodies like fresh baked muffins alongside natural foods and of course, a number of smiling faces ready to help you find that vegan coconut cheese you’ve been scouring the state for. And did we mention they have great sales? On organic, natural foods? Yeah, it’s a gold (or should we say, green) mine. 934 E Main Rd., Portsmouth, 683-0007, thegreengrocerri.com

Take a Spin
Salt Cycle Studio

Salt Cycle Studio blows a breath of fresh air into the oft stale trope of spin cycling. You will still get a killer workout, but with the company’s own unique spin (pun intended). Choose from three different classes that promise such goodies as getting a natural high, sweating like there’s no tomorrow or cycling beneath the soft glow of giant salt lamps. They also offer a Buti yoga class that transforms yoga from a slow workout to one with bursts of dance, movement and conditioning. 315 Main Rd., Tiverton, 816-0404, saltcyclestudios.com

Tea Time
Gather Herbs

Gather Herbs is so much more than a place to pop in for a cuppa. In addition to its array of herbal teas and tonics to sooth what ails you (think Liver Support for the day after your friend’s stag night or Lymph Mover for the days when waking up feels like work), the shop has a variety of organic herbs, roots, flowers and seeds for all natural wellness. Don’t know if you should use ginger or chamomile to tame your troubled tummy? Gather’s consultants will help you find what herb is for you. 312 Broadway, Newport, 314-4014, gatherherbs.com

Meditation Nation
Shambhala Meditation Center

You wouldn’t think you could find enlightenment in Pawtucket, but Shambhala Meditation Center offers a tranquil oasis in the middle of the urban jungle. Set aside your anxieties for a while with a free introduction to meditation, a group class or a weekend retreat. Shambhala has programs for all levels, from beginner to advanced. 541 Pawtucket Ave., Pawtucket, 753-4858, providence.shambhala.org

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