By Melissa Kaufman

With plunging temperatures, a briskness in the air and frequent inclement weather, there has never been a better time to warm up and relax. Thankfully, while awaiting the arrival of Spring, there are numerous ways to delight in the current season offering warmth, leisure, tranquility and excitement, simultaneously. Whether it is mug of decadent, steamy hot cocoa, a warm bowl of chili, a steam room at the spa, or enjoying a musical performance outdoors alongside the glow and warmth of a firepit, Philadelphia is chock full of unique ways to increase comfort even with a chill in the air! Read along for a vast selection of ways to relax and shake off those winter chills with the help of local Philly Happening List favorites! Also, don’t forget to cast your vote for this year’s Philly Happening List HERE.

Visit a Local Spa/Salon

Whether it is receiving a full body massage, facial, reflexology, sauna session, manicure/pedicure or hair cut/style, this season is a great time to indulge in a relaxing, pampering experience. Let your skin soak up much-needed moisture through indulging in a hydrating massage or rejuvenating treatment and unwind in some of the county’s and Happening List’s most coveted spas and salons:

Halcyon Floats, 2020 Happening List Winner for Day Spa

Delight and relax in Philadelphia’s top float center! Also called Sensory Deprivation Therapy, float with ease in a COVID-safe environment as they are taking all necessary protocols and enjoy a serene and calming float experience. Enjoy the feelings of weightlessness while floating in a custom float room filled with Epsom salts, said to decrease stress within the first thirty minutes!

Rescue Rittenhouse Spa, 2020 Happening List Finalist for Day Spa

Step into serenity in this 7,500 square foot facility offering 10 treatment rooms and everything from massages, facials, nail lounge, women’s steam room, saunas, hair salons and even a beauty and makeup boutique! An on-site café bar completes the experience while sipping on custom-made teas and other beverages. Even enjoy a virtual video skincare consultation from the comfort of home.

Enjoy a Warm, Hearty Meal

The Winter season is the ideal time to enjoy many hearty, comforting and warm favorites, such as chilis, soups/stews, casseroles, steamy Italian dishes, as well as spicy Mexican cuisine and can be easily prepared from the comfort of home, enjoyed on-site or via takeout at local restaurants. Check out some of these Happening List winners for flavorful ways to increase the temperature:

Three Monkeys Café, 2020 Happening List Winner for Salads

Warm up & and let the Three Monkeys Café do the cooking through ordering one of their claim-to-fame salads, featuring options such as a Crock of Onion Soup, Buffalo Shrimp, Roasted Butternut Squash & Apple, Grilled Flank Steak, Apple Walnut & Shrimp Tortilla or even family-sized brunch specials! Choose to dine-in or order to go.

Reading Terminal Market, 2020 Happening List Winner for Farmer’s Market

Enjoy local, seasonal and healthy produce, meats, cheeses, seafood, dairy and meal options while patronizing local businesses within Philadelphia’s largest indoor market! Peruse the market and pick up all the ingredients to prepare a nourishing, warm entrées and fill up your refrigerators & pantries!

El Vez, 2020 Happening List Winner for Mexican Food

Experience the spicy side of the season and warm up to an assortment of authentic Mexican cuisine, including Sweet Corn and Poblano Empanadas, Tortilla Soup, Mexican Chopped Salads, Tacos, Burritos and many more. Also enjoy spicy or mild margaritas and cocktails and even a Mexican Hot Chocolate!

Sip on Warm Beverages

With recent temperatures often hovering at or below freezing, the need to warm up is enhanced and can be easily accomplished through enjoying warm mugs of coffee/espresso/lattes/cappuccinos, hot cocoa, hot ciders & hot teas. Enjoy these beverages at home or on the go at these Happening List favorites:

Black n Brew, 2020 Happening List Finalist for Coffee

Stop in Monday-Friday, 3-5pm, for a different kind of Happy Hour, offering $1 hot mugs & iced coffees, as well as $2 single shot lattes. Beyond happy hour, also choose from a wide offering of smoothies, such as “Over the Rainbow,” “Orange Sunrise,” and “Mixed Berry.” Choose to enhance the health and flavor of your smoothie with additions such as protein powder, green super food powder, peanut butter or even a shot of espresso for a java twist!

La Colombe Coffee, 2020 Happening List Winner for Coffee

Become a seasoned coffee connoisseur from the comfort of home and warm up to a flavorful, artisan-blend of La Colombe Coffee! Peruse their website and choose from dark, medium to light roast coffees, as well as green & herbal teas. Also consider stopping into one of their café’s for grab and go service with a limited café menu to prioritize safety and distancing.

Enjoy a Wine and/or Spirits Tasting

With Philadelphia home to the wine bars and breweries, many are offering private or public tastings, as well as various events to celebrate the season and warm up with flavorful sips amid a firepit or heated outdoor space. If on-site tastings aren’t of interest, pick up a bottle of locally-produced wine to enjoy from the comfort of home, or via Zoom tasting with friends and family! Check out some of these Happening List favorites for sips to savor:

Tria, 2020 Happening List Winner for Winery or Tasting Room

As the city’s renowned wine bar, visit the Tria website and sign up for an at-home wine, beer or cheese class! Each wine & beer class includes seven to eight 2oz wine/beer tasting pours or cans, a Tria snack and cheese box, tasting mat & sheet, whereas the cheese classes include seven to eight cheese samples, two complimentary glasses of wine and a tasting sheet. The above materials are picked up and the classes are conducted virtually at-home.

Yards Brewing Company,  2020 Happening List Winner for Brewery

Stop by the Yards Brewing taproom and choose from Signature Ales such as “Philthy,” First Drafts such as “Grapefruit Pale Ale,” Ales of the Revolution or choose a flight and sample several brews to create your own tasting. Also consider ordering their beers online for delivery or curbside pickup, available seven days per week.

Warm Up with a Workout

Get your heart rate pumping, work up a sweat and generate natural, internal heat through engaging in an energizing workout! Warm up in the healthiest of ways through checking out some of these Happening List favorites to increase flexibility and promote an easy way to make exercise an enjoyable & beneficial experience:

Dan Campos Fitness, 2020 Happening List Winners for Gym & Group Exercise

Download their new app and enjoy perusing all they have to offer. Follow along on their Facebook page for the latest updates and tips. Operating as a full-service gym, they offer bootcamps, open gym, personal training, conditioning and much more to accommodate all skill levels and interests.

Studio 34, 2020 Happening List Winner for Yoga

Enjoy a vast array of virtual yoga classes live-streamed via Mindbody for $6 each! Peruse their website for a full schedule of classes, which include Hatha Yoga, Align &Flow and many others, all offered at a variety of skill levels. Also, two weekly classes; Yoga for Recovery & Meditation and Mindfulness, are conducted via Zoom and are donation-based. Other workshops and special events are also available, as well as teacher-training.

Pursue a Creative Activity

When the temperatures are chilly and the weather is inclement, some of the best and easiest ways to warm up and occupy time is through engaging in a creative activity. Whether it is doing some DIY baking through a bake kit or painting a masterpiece with a kit from a local paint store, the possibilities are endless! Check out some of these Happening List favorites to guaranteed to get your creative juices flowing:

Painting with a Twist, 2020 Happening List Nominee for Date Night

Indulge your inner artist and paint a masterpiece or simply enjoy the therapeutic/stress-relieving benefits of artistry! Schedule an in-studio session or private party in advance online or pick-up a paint kit to complete your masterpiece from the comfort of home with friends and family.

Homemade Goodies by Roz, 2020 Happening List Nominee for Bakery

Pick up a Homemade Goodies by Roz official cookbook and start recreating your favorite baked goods and specialties enjoyed at the bakery! Use your imagination and put your own spin on tried and true recipes, or even decorate premade sugar cookies from the bakery and more!

Iannelli’s Famous Brick Oven Bakery & Cafe, 2020 Happening List Finalist for Pizza

Try your hand at cooking and baking and become both an Italian and seasoned baker after visiting and ordering from Iannelli’s online catalog of specialties! Try creating your own cannolis at home by ordering a cannoli kit, which comes with 12 fresh cannoli shells, frozen ricotta cheese filling and Belgian chocolate chips! Fill your shells at your leisure and enjoy a gourmet Italian dessert. Also pick up an assortment of their homemade “gravies” to put over home-cooked pastas, pizzas and more.



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