Floating Back On Main Street

You may have noticed that for the past 6 months, Westporters were more stressed than usual. Our calm, balanced natures seem to have floated away.

ifloat-logoIn fact, our stress levels spiked after iFloat closed July 31. The Main Street spot — above Oscar’s, which coincidentally ended operations the same day — offered 4 saltwater tanks. Floating in warm water in dark, insulated private rooms was a rejuvenating experience.

Running the business became too stressful, though, for owner David Conneely. After more than 4 years, he needed some balance in his own life.

Westporters can now relax. iFloat reopened on Monday.

New owner Terri Stangl is excited to be here. Like Conneely, she is a float believer.

Terri Stangl

Terri Stangl

The Ann Arbor native came east to study psychology (with a philosophy emphasis) at Yale. After earning a law degree from the University of Michigan, she spent 18 years running a poverty advocacy non-profit in Flint.

But in 2008, things changed. Her parents died, and she felt burned out professionally. Floating resonated as a way to slow down, be honest with herself, and figure out life changes.

Terri opened a small float center near Flint. “There’s a lot of stress in that area,” she notes. Customers came from as far as 50 miles away.

After 4 years, as her marriage ended, she took an offer to work at a bigger float center in New Jersey.

Terri knew Conneely — floating is a small world — and when she heard of the opportunity in Westport, she grabbed it. Since August, she’s been getting ready — and learning about this area.

She has learned, for example, that Westport is a “really interesting community.” And that it is filled with stressed-out people who “want to optimize their own thinking.”

Terri has made some changes. She redid the showers and interiors. She added a state-of-the-art ultraviolet light sterilization system.

She also changed the schedule. iFloat is now open 7 days a week.

An iFloat relaxation tank.

An iFloat relaxation tank.

So far, Terri says, the reaction is “wonderful. People are very excited to have us back.” She’s attracted newcomers as well as longtime floaters — “everyone from hedge fund people to massage therapists.”

She’s honoring gift certificates and prepaid float series from the summer. New clients get 3 floats for the price of 2. And Terri is working on a Valentine’s Day special.

You know — that most stressful day of the year.

(For more information, or to book a float, click here.)

One response to “Floating Back On Main Street

  1. Roger Kaufman

    Sounds groovy…”whatever floats your boat.”