As we head into spring and savor longer days of sunshine and warmer temperatures, it may just be the perfect time to relax, renew and restore. And some of Niantic’s newest businesses have you covered!

Niantic Yoga

Niantic Yoga is a local niche studio that was originally opened in 2002, located on Liberty Way. In 2020, the Covid-19 shutdown forced them to close their studio to in-person classes. Owner Tara Filip says, “We had to give up the lease on our 1200-square-foot studio and figure out how best to hunker down online. When in-person classes were open again, we needed to find a new studio. Thankfully the stars aligned for us, and we found the perfect space on Main Street. We are ecstatic to be in this historic building and honored to be part of the community.”

Tara feels that having a yoga studio in our downtown enhances the diverse offerings of the Main Street businesses. She says, “Yoga and meditation have become even more vital to our regeneration and recovery from more than a year of change, stress and grief.”

Niantic Yoga offers a wide variety of yoga classes from their signature slow, restorative Blanket Yoga (Svaroopa Yoga) to a more athletic Vinyasa flow. They offer weekly meditation programs and teen-led meditation classes. They also host David Chandler’s weekly Tai Chi classes. Tara says, “The spiritual benefits of a consistent yoga and meditation practice enhances our daily lives, our ability to regulate emotions and stress, as well as to recover and rejuvenate.” Whether you go for relaxation and healing or strength and flexibility, Niantic Yoga has a class for you. They want yoga and meditation to be accessible to everyone at all levels of experience and abilities.

Niantic Yoga has had students from Guilford, East Haddam and Rhode Island, and they plan to build on that broad reach.

Tara grew up in Niantic until the age of 16, when her family moved to East Haddam. She went off to college and then travelled the country after graduating with a B.S. in Fine Arts and Photography. She lived in four different states with various jobs and careers before returning home to Niantic in 2012 to be closer to her family. Now, Tara and her husband live in Crescent Beach, just a short stroll from the new Studio location.

In the short term, Niantic Yoga plans to grow their customer base and fine-tune their schedule to continue adding classes to best serve the community. Longer term, they envision a full-time studio with students attending diverse classes, workshops and programs for all ages. Tara says, “We hope to start more programs for children, teens and seniors and be able to offer pregnancy yoga, recovery yoga classes and more.

The Studio offers unique classes – check out their yoga and craft series or art and calligraphy workshops! They plan to take advantage of the warmer weather by taking classes on the road to parks, beaches and special event venues.

Also, the Studio is available for special classes, workshops and community events such as book club meetings, rehearsals and more. Just bring your idea to Tara, and she’ll work with you to make it happen.

Join Niantic Yoga for their Grand Opening ribbon cutting event on May 28 at 1:00 p.m. during the Niantic Artisan and Vintage Market.

Tara would love to start getting more involved with downtown events and Niantic Main Street. She says, “As our schedule stabilizes, and we establish our new foundation, we are excited to become involved in the community on many different levels.”

Visit for the class offerings and schedule, as well as special events and workshops.

Niantic Yoga
413 Main Street, Niantic

Glow on Main

Glow on Main had their grand opening in August of 2021. Owned by Meagan Gates, APRN, Certified Nurse Injector, they offer neurotoxins such as Botox and Dysport. Services include dermal fillers for lip augmentation and cheek and chin volume. They also offer chemical peels, dermaplaning and micro-needling. Their most popular service is pain-free laser hair removal.

They recently added teeth whitening and henna brow and tints to their array of services.

Meagan always envisioned owning a small business in Niantic ever since she moved here six years ago. Her sister-in-law owns Posh Salon, a business that’s in its tenth year and at the same Main Street location where Glow on Main can be found.

Meagan was a nurse for six years before obtaining her master’s degree and working as a family practice nurse practitioner. She had always loved aesthetics and skincare. She became a certified nurse injector three years ago. This past summer she took the leap when the opportunity presented itself.

Glow on Main has plans to add IV hydration to the services they offer.

Meagan says, “I love making our clients feel special – this is their time to relax. I pride myself on creating a clean, friendly, relaxing and ‘no frills small town feel’ environment.”

The new business has been welcomed by other small businesses in town, who Meagan says have most definitely helped to contribute to her early success. She looks forward to participating in downtown events.

Her long-term goals include adding several more high-end services, expanding the office space and adding more expert nurse injectors. Recently, practitioners Gina Paternostro, APRN, and Sam Horner, RN, joined the team.

Check them out at!

Glow on Main
321 Main Street, Niantic
959 215 8550

Monday – Friday: 10am – 6pm
Saturday: 10am – 2pm
Sunday: Closed
Inquire about additional appointment times!

Grota Solna Salt Cave

Grota Solna Salt Cave, co-owned by Tracy Benson and Steven Michels, just had their ribbon cutting on September 26. Though their search for a location included neighboring communities, they’re glad they ultimately chose Niantic. Tracy says, “Niantic is our home, and we couldn’t be happier that we decided to open our business here, too. We are proud and excited to join this vibrant downtown business community.”

The salt cave offers salt therapy, also known as Halotherapy, an alternative treatment for a wide variety of ailments and conditions such as anxiety, sleeplessness, allergies, asthma, inflammation and even the common cold. Salt therapy is a unique, natural therapy that allows you to get a sense of peace and serenity while simply breathing in the negatively-charged, ionized salt particles.

You will experience the magic at your very first session. Lay in their comfy zero gravity chairs, surrounded by tons of healing Himalayan salt with a twinkling sky above you. You can meditate, nap or simply zone out – whatever feels most comfortable for you. Many have shared that they can breathe easier and have a calmer, more elevated state of mind after their session. Whether you are looking for some quiet time alone or want to bring your partner, friends or co-workers in with you to de-stress, the Salt Cave has something for everyone.

Their retail shop offers an array of products for the bath and body. Additional items include home décor, accessories and a special kids’ section.

Since opening, they have introduced massage therapy, Reiki, guided meditation, tarot/oracle reading, paint and sip, jewelry-making, tea tasting, yoga and more!

While Tracy is from Brooklyn, CT and Steve is from Clinton, NY, they made their way to the Connecticut shoreline through work and decided to settle in East Lyme. Their 5-year-old son, Malcolm, attends Flanders Elementary School. Tracy has nearly fifteen years of experience in the customer service industry. She currently works as a Commercial Real Estate Loan Servicing Manager at Liberty Bank. Steve worked as a department manager at Big Y for over a decade before taking on management of the salt cave full time. Tracy says, “We both have a passion for our customers and enjoy creating long lasting connections.”

Fellow downtown business owners have been incredibly welcoming. Tracy shares, “From the moment we launched our business on social media, we were flooded with warm wishes, congratulations and invitations to join local networking groups. We are so proud and excited to be a part of this Main Street community.” They were recently a full event sponsor of the Niantic Oyster Festival to benefit the Miracle League of SE CT. Tracy adds, “We will take any opportunity we can to give back to our community.”

Their goal for the short-term is to continue to educate the community about Salt Therapy and how it can be beneficial. Long-term goals include expanding their class and session offerings. Tracy says, “There are so many possibilities, and we are open to exploring anything our clients are looking for – including additional spa services, Cryotherapy and an Infrared Sauna.”

Stop in to learn more or visit them on social media or at their website for their up-to-date event calendar.

Grota Solna Salt Cave of Niantic
14 Pennsylvania Avenue, Niantic

Winter hours are currently:
Sunday: 10am – 8pm
Monday: 12pm – 8pm
Tuesday: 10am – 8pm
Wednesday: Closed
Thursday – Saturday: 10am – 8pm

Summer hours will be:
Seven days a week, 10am – 8pm

Happy Soul Wellness Studio

Niantic’s newest health and wellness offering, Happy Soul Wellness Studio, was just opened on October 1 by co-owners – and sisters – Soraya Cambridge-Aubele and Ruth Lisa Gonsalves.

The sisters grew up in Ecuador, adjacent to the Rain Forest. They both moved to the United States many years ago. While Soraya’s educational background is in Law, she wasn’t interested in practicing as an attorney. She knew her calling was in energy healing. She has been a practicing Reiki Master for many years. Ruth’s love has always been in the skin care field; she’s an esthetician. Together they are realizing their dreams and enjoy providing these services to their clients.

They’ve called Niantic home for many years and their stepfather owns Giuliano’s Bakery, so they have been part of the community for a long time. Opening their business here felt right.

Happy Soul Wellness studio offers the combination of skin care therapy and Reiki Energy Healing. Soraya says, “We are a little different in that we help our clients with their body as well as their soul. Many people aren’t aware of what Reiki actually or why it’s so important to one’s well-being to have your energy balanced.” She takes the time to educate clients on the benefits of their treatments. Clients can enjoy the benefits of a healing grounded in the movement of energy and in creating total alignment.

Ruth applies some of the most innovative and proven techniques when providing skin care and skin treatments. Whether it’s a facial, or another process, she takes her time outlining a treatment procedure that will be tailored to each client’s unique needs. Soraya says, “The results are simply amazing!”

Soraya and Ruth are raising their families in East Lyme and feel completely connected to the community. Soraya and her husband enjoy managing their Facebook page, Positively East Lyme/Niantic. Soraya says, “It’s a place where folks can come and share all the great things about our town. We believe that positive energy is what makes our town so welcoming and peaceful.”

Soraya and Ruth hope their studio can bring even more positivity to the community they love. They’re excited to join the other Main Street businesses to continue to make Niantic a great downtown.

Their objective and business model is simply to improve people’s lives. Soraya says, “So, it will be our customers who define our future. So far, the response and customer feedback has been amazing, and our business is off to a roaring start with many repeat and referral customers.” Soraya and Ruth hope to be serving Niantic and the wonderful residents for many years to come.

Follow Happy Soul Wellness on Facebook for news and offerings. Call them to make an appointment.

With so many health and wellness options right in our backyard, it’s easier for each one of us to take the first step toward the self-care and healing of our bodies and our minds. The time to relax, renew and restore is now!

Happy Soul Wellness Studio
436 Main Street, Main Street Niantic CT 06357
Open by appt only



About Our Main Street Blogger:
Joanne lives in, and loves, our community. She was looking for an opportunity to help share all that our local businesses do to make East Lyme such a special place to call home, and she is excited to contribute to our blog. Joanne brings to the role her experience from New London Main Street where she contributed content to their website, newsletters and email communications for many years.

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