The city’s most blissful new meditation studios
1At House of VR,Queen West’s 4,200-square-foot, two-storey virtual reality lounge, guests can practise their uppercut, sit court-side at a Raptors game or explore an Egyptian tomb. But for those who are already over-stimulated, they offer Mindfulness Monday, an Oculus-aided escape from the city’s hustle and bustle to a paradisiacal jungle or a sun-soaked beach—no passport required. 639 Queen St. W., 416-860-7584, houseofvr.com.
THE TECH ZONE
2Instead of promising stronger abs and tighter glutes, Yorkville’s new Mindset Brain Gym is all about maintaining the brain. Upon entering, members surrender their phones (there are personal lockers with charging stations), then perch on vegan leather cushions in a room misted with essential oils and om their way through an instructor-led meditation. Here’s the twist: each visitor gets a Muse headband, a futuristic gadget worn around the noggin to measure mental activity and offer mindfulness exercises. After the mental workout, guests receive a free glass of kombucha on tap. 62 Cumberland St., 647-748-6463, mindsetbraingym.com.
3The Quiet Company is a back-to-basics meditation studio that welcomes harried urban folks to take a minute—or, in this case, 30—out of their hectic lives and find a pocket of inner peace. Guided group meditation classes take place in the Quiet Company’s airy industrial studio, decked out in gorgeous greenery and Rorschachian prints from the Toronto Ink Company. The Lunch and Meditate class ($28), a quick mindfulness session followed by a healthy lunch from Impact Kitchen, nourishes both the mind and body (plus, it’s a great excuse to get out of the office). 511 King St. W., quietcompany.ca.
THE FREQUENCY SPA
4The city’s most experimental meditation studio is Soul 7, a so-called “frequency spa” in Yorkville. At its drop-in, pay-what-you-can classes, the studio employs neuro-scientific therapies to both balance the central nervous system and boost the immune system. A pair of special sunglasses deliver sound, light and neuromuscular vibration to replicate the benefits of deep meditation, even for beginners. It’s technology-induced relaxation in a recliner—kind of like a Netflix binge without the Cheetos and Queer Eye guys. 100-17 Yorkville Ave., 416-847-6999, soul7.ca.