Boston Magazine Feature: From Spa Treatments to Timepieces, These Are the Top Gifts for Boston Moms, Grads, and Dads This Season

Spring in Boston brings more than just warm sun and 6:30 sunsets — it brings celebration. With 64 colleges and universities in the city and both Mother’s Day and Father’s Day approaching, there are plenty of special people to show how much we care.

For occasions like these, it can be hard to find a gift that says what we want it to say: Congratulations; I appreciate you; You amaze me. You may know you want to give something sentimental, precious, and priceless, but where do you begin? We spoke to experts from some of Boston’s most sought-after retailers to find out what’s great for giving this spring.

For Dads or Moms: A Massage

“Men might go to the gym or play 18 holes,” says Linda Townsend, owner of Release Well-Being Center, which will open their doors at The Heritage On The Garden in April. “But actually taking the time to relax and decrease stress—most men don’t put that at the top of their list.” That’s why her number one recommendation for a Father’s Day gift (that they’ll actually use) is a massage. And, of course, as our Moms work, raise children and grandchildren, and spend time on their feet day after day, a massage is the perfect elixir for aches, pains, and stress.

At Release, there are a breadth of options depending on what the mothers and fathers in your life might want. “If they’ve never had a massage before, then we usually recommend the Serenity [massage],” says Linda. The massage therapist will use lighter strokes to create a relaxing, feel-good massage. You could also go a step further into the custom massage which allows focus points like the back or shoulders. If you already know they love a good massage, try for the deep tissue or trigger point massage.  

For Grads and Moms: A Spa Day

Our moms deserve to be pampered and taken care of, just like they took care of us for years. And as for grads? “Grads are so stressed out going down the homestretch,” says Townsend. Sending them to the spa after graduation is the perfect reset they need for their next chapter. “Whether they’re preparing for college and applications or the workforce, [give] them a spa day so that they can come in and experience all of the healing therapies,” she says.

Release Well-Being Center’s new location will emphasize contrast therapy, which is when you spend time alternating between the sauna and the cold plunge—they’ll have two infrared saunas, a traditional sauna, and two cold plunges. “The cold plunge is going to give you that cold water, high euphoria, but also just reduce the stress and tension you’ve been experiencing,” she says.

Release experts will welcome spa guests and walk them through all their options for healing treatments before they embark on their spa days, so their experience can be tailored towards their preferences and needs. “They can do what they want,” Townsend says. “Sometimes that could be grabbing a magazine, taking it to one of our heated benches or cozy club chairs, and reading and napping. Because that might be what you need on that day.”