After years of working in the health care industry, Rosemary Weiner decided to take a much-needed break and replenish at a spa. Her experience there, combined with her background in nursing and health, led her to open The Brass Rose Spa & Salon in Blairstown, New Jersey. Weiner describes her spa as, “a cross between pampering and alternative care.”
She began her career as a nurse and quickly moved into public health services in her community, where she had the opportunity to become involved with publicly funded health programs. Weiner worked with various companies as a consultant to hospitals, insurance companies and state medical societies. When she decided to open the spa, she served as its general contractor for the construction of the building and facilities. Weiner also was responsible for conducting research on different products and treatments, and gathered a group of spa professionals to develop and test them.
After researching different spas, she came up with a name and a brand that remain strong seven years after the business opened its doors. “Brass Rose is branding. Brass is a metal, it’s durable, and it’s part of my personality. Rose shows the softer side of me,” explains Weiner. She says clients identify with the name and the logo because all aspects of the spa are designed to accentuate its meaning, from the furniture and equipment, to the staff’s apparel. Upon entering the facility, she says clients feel as though they’re checking into a fine hotel.
This professionalism extends beyond the ambiance. Weiner is committed to the idea that physical and mental health overlap. “I recognize that the mind/body/spirit connection is very strong. The first thing we have to do is disconnect clients from the outside so that they can focus on themselves; that’s where healing begins,” she says. Due to Weiner’s connections to the medical world, cancer patients are referred to her spa for massages and pregnant women are sent for relaxation purposes. According to Weiner, massage releases endorphins in the body, which feel good and help alleviate the stress of illness or pregnancy.
To best meet the needs of her clients, she requires that her team of about 25 employees be certified for every service; an in-house educator provides the training and certification. Outside educators also visit, and Weiner encourages the team members to continue their education through other avenues, as well.
In addition to traditional treatments, The Brass Rose offers “time honored traditions from other cultures,” including a Native American stone therapy; Hawaiian lomi lomi—a massage that features a fluid, rhythmic motion using the forearms as well as the hands; and Tibetan ayurveda, a relaxed facial.
Since she began in the spa business, Weiner has noticed several industry trends, including its overall growth, as well as the increasing number of men turning to spas as a way to relax and recharge. She actively participates in different organizations because she believes ignorance about what is happening in the United States and globally causes you to “operate with blinders on.” The Brass Rose was awarded The Day Spa Association’s Distinguished Day Spa of the Year Award in 2003.
Weiner takes her responsibilities as a spa owner seriously. She believes in giving back to the spa community and helping it grow in any way that she can. Her clients respond to her professionalism by returning time and again. “Many clients come for stress relief. They take that time out for themselves to rejuvenate,” Weiner explains. The most rewarding part about her job is when she sees her clients on their way out, and they make a point of saying how great they feel when they return to the world.