One of the Village neighborhood’s secret gems is Zahara Day Spa at 403 Monmouth St., which opened in January 2013. If owner and aesthetician Najat Hafdi gets her way, though, it won’t be much of a secret for long.
Hafdi grew up in Morocco watching and learning from her mother, the community’s go-to aesthetician, the woman everyone would run to with their burns and blemishes. She followed in her mom’s footsteps and has been a skin care specialist for over 20 years.
“I really, really do enjoy my job,” said Nafdi. “I enjoy making women beautiful, I love when the skin responds beautifully–I love what I do. I get a kick from it.”
At the holistic and organic spa, which uses fruit- and plant-based products, Hafdi offers a full range of services including facials, body treatments, massage and waxing.
“One thing you need to know about me and my approach as a spa owner and aesthetician is that you need your skin to look good. When you get an oil massage or when you wax yourself and feel clean–I don’t want that to be seen as ‘pampering.’ It’s not. It’s something we need and it’s part of our well-being,” she said.
“People also think of massages as ‘pampering,’ but no, it’s a relief. It helps circulation, it even helps people with cancer…it’s very important for the body.”
She says the spa’s emphasis on natural products and dedication to treating skin with kindness sets it apart.
“Don’t force the skin to do something,” she said. “You have to take it really easy, slowly and surely. If you try to force the skin to do something, you may ruin it with harsh treatments like microdermabrasion. It takes the easiest touch; less is more.”
Hafdi, who also lives in the Village, has high hopes for the up-and-coming neighborhood and wants to help both old and new residents be their best selves.
“This area has a lot of new things coming and is really different. I thought (when I opened) that it would be really cool and really nice to open a holistic, organic spa for people maybe interested in something different,” she said.
“I want to produce more good products for the community, I want our business to get known so we can make more jobs and…I love when everybody is looking good and feeling good. Everyone deserves to be happy about their skin and how they look.”
Zahara Day Spa is located at 403 Monmouth St. For more information, visit ZaharaDaySpa.com or call 201-533-9300.
Village Business Spotlight: For over 100 years, small businesses have played a vital role in shaping the Village. The Village Neighborhood Association is committed to bringing awareness and support to those businesses that embrace the long-standing values and enduring community spirit of our neighborhood.
Photography by Mike McNamara