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New Luxury spa and wellness center opens

Richard Root and Cyndee Lam relocated from Los Angles to Ocean City to open the Actualize Wellness Spa.

By Cindy Hoffman, Staff Writer

(July 27, 2023) The Actualize Wellness Spa is not your typical day spa.  Richard Root and Director Cyndee Lam have combined their vision of a luxury day spa with a community wellness center.

The couple recently relocated their business from Los Angeles to West Ocean City and has created a mini-oasis in the Herring Creek Professional Center.

The day spa offers facials that can address wrinkles and sagging skin; acne and inflammation; hyperpigmentation; and just plain dry skin that is common from sun exposure for the many beach lovers that live or visit Ocean City.

Lam gathers information from new clients on the products they use, their diet and exercise routines and skin exposure.

“To fine tune, I use BioTherapeutics skin analysis and even more effective BT Vision that is far better than the traditional magnifier on an arm.”

She also watches carefully how a person’s face reacts to her application.  “I can change midstream when necessary.”

The spa also offers Celluma Light Therapy, which “uses specific wavelengths of light energy to improve cellular health by accelerating the repair and replenishment of compromised tissue cells.”

Lam said the therapy can clear acne and wrinkles, quell pain and even grow hair.

She always follows up with her clients the next day to find out how they are feeling and how their skin reacted to the treatment.

Massages are also available at Actualize Wellness Center, including deep tissue, hot stone, Swedish, and Reiki. The spa even offers special massages for pregnant women.

Much time and attention went into outfitting the spa. They includes award-winning Bio-Therapeutics facial instruments, IMAGE skincare and #1 Celluma Light Therapy and facial beds that won Dermascope’s  #1 spot. The products Lam uses have beautiful light and natural scents and feel wonderful on the skin.

We left everything in L.A,” she said in a British-Singaporean accent. “When we bought it all again, it only made sense to buy the best. It’s rare that anyone has the chance to start over completely fresh.”

But the Wellness Spa goes beyond the luxury spa experiences to offer free WELLTalks and reasonably priced seminars, and coaching for health and life’s challenges, all led by Root.

Root hosts WELLTalk, classes and coaching, in the “Eight Areas of Wellness:” physical, emotional, financial, spiritual, intellectual, environmental, career and creative.

“Our name ‘Actualize’ comes from psychologist Abraham Maslow,” he explained. “In the East they call it ‘enlightenment.’ Maslow calls it ‘Self-Actualization.’ That’s what we do. Teach you how to become or ‘actualize’ your best self.”

His program is based on a true teaching philosophy: “Give a man a fish, you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.”

Hogan Pesaniello, a specialist in holistic neurofeedback will be the first speaker for WELLTalk. She graduated from Johns Hopkins and is a practicing psychiatrist in Snow Hill.  She will speak sometime in September, a specific date has yet to be determined.

The center also offers classes in College Application and Advanced Placement English. Root has a 97 percent lifetime pass-rate in A.P. English, and, although he is formally retired from teaching English, he still likes to keep a small finger in his once dominant career.

Root plans to engage the surrounding community in events. He plans to open the expansive, brightly colored and comfortable art lounge/lobby to art exhibits, film nights, talks and other activities.

The lounge is a welcoming space where clients are encouraged to linger. It’s furnished in a whimsical collection of Italian leather and sleek mid-century modern furniture, with exotic Asian accents. Impressionist and colorful modern abstracts abound, some painted by Root himself.

As a new business in the community, Actualize is offering some steep discounts to encourage people to visit and try out their services. Visit their website for details at