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Hamptons Life

May 5, 2009 11:53 AMPublication: The East Hampton Press & The Southampton Press

Center for beauty and health to open Saturday

May 5, 2009 11:53 AM

To Geomare Aviles, co-owner of the Beautiful You Center for the Healing Arts in Southampton, her work is more than just business. In fact, when she talks about how the center came to be, she is quickly moved to tears.

“I would like to give my clients a place in the Hamptons like the places in Europe I have visited. To create an atmosphere that people can be healed in,” she said during a recent interview, wiping the tears from her eyes. “Time is not money for us. It’s about how much we give.”

And it’s difficult to doubt her authenticity. When Ms. Aviles, originally from Ecuador, speaks about working with people to help heal them, she brims over with honest and contagious emotion and excitement.

On Saturday, Southampton Village Mayor Mark Epley will officiate at the ribbon-cutting ceremony and grand opening of the Beautiful You Center for Healing Arts, which is at 1 p.m. Afterward, an open house will be held until 4 p.m. at the center, located at 80 White Street in the village.

A licensed esthetician, certified in Reconnective Healing, Spa Therapy and Ohashi, a method of energy work that relies on touch, Ms. Aviles and her business partner, Nick Alimanestianu, opened the center in 2008 but have been adding arrows to their quiver of homeopathic services over the last year in preparation for this summer season.

The center, located in Southampton Village, now offers facial treatments, chiropractic services, hypnotherapy, meditation classes, Feng Shui, personal coaching and Reiki.

Ms. Aviles relies on a team of licensed professionals to offer services they claim facilitate deep states of relaxation, rejuvenation, release of tension, and transformation of health and well-being.

But getting the center to this point has not been easy. Originally opened in 2008, the 3,500-square-foot center was established as a skin care salon, but Ms. Aviles and Mr. Alimanestianu restructured their business as a Healing Arts Center, adding the aforementioned services.

This is the partners’ second business venture. They were once married and ran Southampton Building Corporation, which Mr. Alimanestianu still operates. Their construction business built the White Street building as a showcase of their work, according to Mr. Alimanestianu.

“It’s the perfect building for this kind of endeavor,” said Mr. Alimanestianu, who is also certified in the healing arts, adding that there are gardens for clients to sit in and relax during the spring, summer and fall months.

The former chief financial officer and vice president of the construction business, Ms. Aviles decided to delve into skin care, something she said she has been interested in since childhood, as a second career. But unlike many traditional estheticians, Ms. Aviles decided to meld her new skill set with her interest in energy healing, and incorporates these non-invasive techniques into her facial sessions.

“Because all of us work with the energy fields, I didn’t want to focus on waxing here. I wanted to reach the deeper souls of the clients and work with them from the inside out,” Ms. Aviles said, describing how she came up with the center’s new business model.

Before joining forces with the other practitioners, Ms. Aviles worked with each one of her soon-to-be partners herself to make sure his or her skills were up to par. “It was all very impressive,” she said, of the experience. “Everybody who works here, I had some experience with myself ... The energy was just incredible.”

After working with Sag Harbor-based chiropractor Dr. John Gangemi, Ms. Aviles said she was blown away: “He is an incredible human being. It comes from his soul.” Dr. Gangemi, founder of the “Release & Balance” Chiropractic Spinal Method, uses what is described as a “gentle comprehensive treatment to enable clients to reconnect with their innate healing process.”

Although Karen Lynn Ferraro is the center’s Reiki Master, she also is a Certified Feng Shui Consultant and a Certified Personal Coach. Reiki, a “laying-on-of-hands” technique of energy healing, is said to remove energy blockages and release tension and pain. Feng Shui is the art of balancing and harmonizing the flow of natural energy in a space; services offered by the center include a floor plan analysis and extensive on-location consultations.

Personal coaching, in which Ms. Ferraro assesses changes clients want to make in their lives by identifying basic self-defeating patterns and developing a “blueprint for change,” runs about $100 per hour.

Hypnotherapy, which is designed to helps individuals cope effectively with stress, manage body weight and develop positive self-image, overcome fear and anxiety, and end self-destructive behaviors such as smoking and drug use, is led at the center by Jacqualyn Hession and runs about $100 per session.

All sessions are by appointment only. Prices range from $50 for a facial to packages priced at $550 and up.

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