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Wellness Spa ‘The Cave’ aims to bring new energy to former battery store on Torrence

LANSING, Ill. (March 12, 2024) – A local principal is trying to bring new energy to an old battery store on Torrence Avenue.

Dr. Shinora Montgomery recently came before Lansing’s Planning and Zoning Board of Appeals to request a special use permit to perform massages at a wellness spa called The Cave that she plans to open at 16915 Torrence Avenue.

The Board peppered her with questions about the business before ultimately voting 7-0 to recommend the special use.

The matter still has to go before the Village Board, and that is expected to occur on March 19.

Massages for the mature

Montgomery, who serves as principal of Riverdale Elementary, said her “mission is to provide the ultimate pamper experience to our clients.”

She explained that her target audience is men over 50 years-old, although women and those younger would not be turned away.

She said the facility would provide massages, manicures, pedicures and esthetician services for veterans, first responders, and seniors.

“We will be providing geriatric massages as our target group, as well as providing mental health massages,” Montgomery said.

spa
Dr. Shinora Montgomery hopes to soon open a wellness spa next to a furniture outlet store in a Torrence Avenue strip mall. (Photo: Paul Czapkowicz)

Family knots

She told the Board that in addition to being a principal she is a licensed massage therapist who came into the field because of her father, who is a veteran.

“As he’s gotten older and I’ve become more of a caregiver, I went back to school for massage therapy,” Montgomery said. “And what I learned through that process was how important massage therapy is for the quality of life both for mental health as well as for the body.”

This is the first wellness center Montgomery is looking to open, and it would fill a space in a strip mall that was once home to a Batteries Plus store.

Montgomery said she would hire two additional therapists, three manicurists and pedicurists and one concierge.

“In my particular facility, I would only be hiring clinical massage therapists,” Montgomery said.

Licenses and security

Before approving its recommendation of the special use permit, the Board added the condition that anyone performing massages at the location must be state-licensed with copies of those licenses available during business hours.

Board Chairperson Grace Bazylewski told Montgomery there have been issues, including break-ins, on Torrence Avenue.

“What kind of security measures are you gonna take on site?,” Bazylewski asked.

Montgomery said there will be a full security system that will be camera and voice-operated.

She said the plan is to be open in time for Father’s Day if all goes well.

Gordon Food Service sign

The Board also voted 7-0 to recommend a special use permit so Gordon Food Services can add an electronic message center to an existing pylon sign at 2330 173rd Street.

The electronic reader board would face Torrence Avenue and advertise to the public what deals are available in the store that has been undergoing a recent renovation.

One condition of the Board’s approval is the installation and maintenance of landscaping at the base of the sign.

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Paul Czapkowicz
Paul Czapkowicz
Paul Czapkowicz has served as a correspondent for the Northwest Indiana Times, so he is familiar with local politics, local business, and local goings-on in general. His training as a teacher gives him an innate sense of how to present facts in an organized and meaningful way, so readers gain understanding of complex subjects.