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Best Spa

Tie: Esspa and Sewickley Spa

Esspa Kozmetica and Salon
17 Brilliant Ave., Aspinwall
412-782-3888 or www.esspa.net

In the world of skin care, the Hungarian facial is apparently not to be missed. It’s a combination of facial massage and skin treatment with just the right product tailored to a person’s specific needs. While Esspa offers a full menu of services, the facial is its specialty.

Sewickley Spa
337 Beaver St., Sewickley
412-741-4240 or www.sewickleyspa.com

A perennial top choice for CP readers, this day spa offers a whole host of treatments, from manis and pedis to facials and massages. If that’s not full-service enough for you, you can get just about every hair on your body waxed off, if that’s your pleasure.

2nd: La Pomponnee
3rd: Metamorphosis 

Best Massage Therapist 

Julie Devine, Devine Touch Massage 
4900 Hatfield St., Lawrenceville
412-680-9900 or www.devinetouchmassage.com

Are you suffering from tension or sore muscles, or perhaps rehabbing from an injury? Submit to the soothing hands of Julie Devine, a highly trained and certified massage therapist. Devine’s warmly decorated facility is located conveniently in central Lawrenceville.

2nd: Rebecca Householder, Centre Ave Massage & Spa
3rd: Courtney Sage, Birch and Basil Wellness

Best Fitness Center 

LA Fitness
Multiple locations
www.lafitness.com 

With seven locations dotted throughout Allegheny County, this national chain has worked (out) its way into Pittsburgh’s health scene. The Bakery Square locale has it all, including basketball and racquetball courts, a sauna, an indoor pool and a juice bar. 

2nd: Planet Fitness
3rd: CrossFit Athletics

Best Bicycle Shop 

Thick Bikes
62 S. 15th St., South Side
412-390-3590 or www.thickbikes.com

The staffers here are all about bikes, whether it’s gear, a repair or setting you up with your next metal steed. Bikes to buy range from kids’ wheels to something gnarly for rugged trails. By their admission, it “Gets super bikey around here.” 

2nd: Kindred Cycles
3rd: Iron City Bikes

Best Yoga Studio

Amazing Yoga
Multiple locations

Vinyasa power yoga is the specialty of Amazing Yoga, whose mini-chain of heated rooms in four venues offer 100 classes per week, including $8 community classes and sessions with a hip-hop soundtrack. Co-creators Karen Conley and Sean Conley launched Amazing in 2000, well ahead of the yoga boom.

2nd: South Hills Power Yoga
3rd: The Yoga Hive

Best Adult Store 

AdultMart
346 Boulevard of the Allies, Downtown, and 4611 McKnight Road, Ross
www.adultmart.com

The Downtown location is hidden in the way you might want an adult shop to be hidden: through a barely marked door, then up a narrow staircase. While it might not scream “welcome,” AdultMart supplies all your needs, including toys, costumes, protection, lubes and loads of porn. 

2nd: Adam and Eve Adult Store
3rd: The Outer Skin for the Inner You

Best Tattoo Shop

Artisan Tattoo
5001 Penn Ave., Garfield
412-661-0503 or www.artisanpittsburgh.com 

Ask around for tattoo-artist recommendations and you’re bound to hear the name of this perennial Best Of winner, opened by Jason and Meliora Angst in 2011. Jason and the other resident artists offer a range of styles, but whatever you get will be a work of art. 

2nd: Neverending Ink Tattoos
3rd: Kyklops Tattoo

Best Body-Piercing Shop 

Hot Rod Piercing Company
95 S. 16th St., South Side, and 115 Oakland Ave., Oakland
www.hotrodpiercingcompany.com

At Hot Rod, they customize your body. Want a diamond chip in your nose or a ring through your lip? They’ll do it. The employees are certified and up on all the latest health and safety regulations, an absolute must when getting a hoop on your hoo-haw.

2nd: Neverending Ink Tattoos
3rd: SIX16 Body Piercing 

Best Place to get a Tattoo Removed 

Disappearing Ink 
106 Nelbon Ave., Eastwood
724-972-7734 or www.disappearinginkltr.com

Wish you could get rid of the tattoo of your ex’s name on your chest? Trying to erase the mistake you made on a wild, drunken night out? This shop uses laser tattoo-removal treatments to help you forget the past.

2nd: East Side Laser Center
3rd: Pittsburgh Permanent Makeup and Tattoo Removal 

Best Vape Shop 

Drip Lounge
749 E. Warrington Ave., Allentown
412-224-2707

Bursting onto the vape scene, Drip Lounge combines all the latest hardware and juices that vapers are looking for, in a club-like atmosphere that also offers live entertainment. Yet another multi-faceted venue added to Allentown’s rebounding business district.

2nd: Villian Vape Shop
3rd: Iron Lung

Best Cigar Shop

Leaf & Bean
2200 Penn Ave., Strip District, and 3525 Washington Road, McMurray
www.leafandbean.com

The original location, in McMurray, opened in 1999, followed by the Strip District venue in 2003. The Strip locale especially is known for its convivial atmosphere, Key West North-style décor — and a nice cup of coffee, hence the “bean.” At either spot, though, you’ll find a humidor to adore.

2nd: Bloom Cigar Company
3rd: The Cigar Den Pittsburgh 

Best Beer Distributor

Save-Mor Beer & Pop Warehouse 
4516 Browns Hill Road, Beechview
412-421-8550 or www.savemorbeer.com

It seems like you can find craft beer anywhere you turn these days and, certainly, Save-Mor is no exception. They have more than 500 varieties from 21st Amendment to Wild Blue Blueberry Lager. But it also carries more than 250 imports and close to 20 gluten-free beers.

2nd: Beer on Butler
3rd: Bellevue Beer

Best Garden Shop / Nursery 

City Grows
5208 Butler St., Lawrenceville
412-781-2082 or www.citygrowspgh.com

City Grows carries only certified organic plants; other products, like flowerpots, are made from recycled materials. The store also boasts that its products are right-sized for city living, a.k.a. they’ll fit on your stoop or kitchen windows.

2nd: Cavacini Landscaping & Garden Center
3rd: Shadyside Nursery 

Best Local Pet Store

Petagogy
5880 Ellsworth Ave., Shadyside 
412-362-7387 or www.petagogy.com

Petagogy supplies the best quality foods, toys and supplies for your pet. Most of their products are sourced from family-owned companies and made from natural ingredients. The shop hosts adoption events, a “yappy hour” for dog-owners and serves as a drop-off location for a pet-food pantry.

2nd: Healthy Pet Products
3rd: Pet Valu

Best Doggy Daycare

The Dog Stop
Multiple locations
www.thedogstop.net 

The first Dog Stop opened in 2009, with the goal of creating a fun and safe environment for dogs, and now there are six locations in the Pittsburgh area. In addition to boarding and day care, the Dog Stop also offers grooming, walking and in-home training.

2nd: Camp Bow Wow
3rd: The Golden Bone

Best Place to Adopt a Pet

Animal Friends
562 Camp Horne Road, North Hills 
412-847-7000 or www.thinkingoutsidethecage.org 

Animals Friends provides temporary shelter for cats, dogs and rabbits that need permanent homes. The no-kill organization also provides classes for pet behaviors, wellness, therapy and more. Volunteers are accepted to help with their mission. 

2nd: Animal Rescue League
3rd: Western PA Humane Society

Best Neighborhood Market

52nd Street Market
601 52nd St., Lawrenceville
412-408-3798 or www.52ndstreetmarket.com

This small shop provides everything from staples like peanut butter, eggs and bread to hyper-local produce from the nearby community garden. They also have a deli counter that serves prepared foods. Or grab some coffee and read the paper. 

2nd: Neighborhood Flea
3rd: Bryant Street Market 


East Liberty Farmers Market, winner of Best Farmers Market - CP PHOTO BY JOHN COLOMBO
  • CP photo by John Colombo
  • East Liberty Farmers Market, winner of Best Farmers Market

Best Farmers Market 

East Liberty Farmers Market 
Station Street and North Euclid Avenue parking lot, East Liberty
pittsburghpa.gov/citiparks/farmers-market

Run by the city’s Department of Parks and Recreation, vendors at this weekly event sell farm-fresh fruits, vegetables, meats, cheeses and baked goods, from May to November. Also look for the occasional selection of flowers, small gifts and gardening items.

2nd: Market Square Farmers Market
3rd: Bloomfield Saturday Market

Best Thrift Shop 

Goodwill  
Multiple locations
www.goodwill.org

Whether you’re de-cluttering your garage or attic, looking for well-seasoned cast-iron skillet or just in the market for some galoshes on the cheap, this nonprofit thrift shop is a resource for the frugal. Shop for clothes, books, furniture, appliances and just about every household (and other) object you can carry. 

2nd: Red White and Blue Thrift Store
3rd: Thriftique

Best Place to Take the Kids for an Afternoon 

Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium 
One Wild Place, Highland Park
412-665-3640 or www.pittsburghzoo.org

One of only six U.S. institutions to offer both land and water wildlife under one … er … roof, this 100-plus-year-old zoo puts a priority on diversity. Kids (and adults) can enjoy the aquarium, three distinct forests, a “Kids Kingdom,” as well as two open-water exhibits.   

2nd: Carnegie Science Center
3rd: Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh 

Best City Tour 

Just Ducky Tours
Station Square, South Side
412-402-3825 or www.justduckytours.com

The best way to tour a town known for its handsome city center framed by three rivers? Why, by amphibious vehicle, of course. This fun- and fact-filled tour via a World War II-type Duck lets visitors cruise through Downtown and a river or two. Plus, quacking is encouraged.

2nd: PA Brew Tours
3rd: Pittsburgh Party Pedaler 


(Sorry, no information is currently available for other years in this same award category.)

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