5 Fun and Affordable Ways to Treat Yourself

francesca's issaquah grand ridge Plaza

There’s nothing quite like pampering yourself after a long week, or when an endless series of commitments finally ends. As we head into the busy summer season, it’s more important than ever to set aside time to relax and unwind. But, pampering often comes with a hefty price tag—or does it? Here are five fun, affordable suggestions to treat yourself and your friends this summer.

1. Catch a $1 movie at Regal Cinemas Issaquah Highlands.
Summer Movies Regal Issaquah Grand Ridge PlazaOn Tuesday and Wednesday mornings, you can see a blockbuster movie for a dollar. Each week brings two new movies that play on both days at 10 am. The $1 movie series runs for nine weeks and opens Tuesday, June 27 with Kung Fu Panda 3 and Ice Age: Collision Course. Regal is located at 940 Park Drive NE.

2. Ladies: Add some bling at francesca’s.
francesca's issaquah grand ridge Plazafrancesca’s women’s fashion boutique showcases fresh summer looks from red coral necklaces and pink chandelier earrings to aquamarine bracelets and much more. Treat yourself with jewelry in the $10 to $20 range. Take advantage of their current BOGO deal: buy one, get one 50% off. francesca’s is located at 1568 Highlands Drive NE.

3. Sip a fine Washington State wine at home.BevMo Issaquah Grand Ridge Plaza WA wine
BevMo! offers one of the largest wine selections in the region and their experts can help pick the ideal affordable wine from Washington State’s Columbia Valley. From the bright, berry flavors in a rosé such as Charles & Charles ($11.99) to the vibrant fruit and balanced acidity of L’École No. 41 Semillon ($12.99), you’ll be spoiled for choice. BevMo! is located at 910 Park Drive NE.

4. Indulge in ultimate relaxation and enjoy professional hair design at Ulta Salon.Ulta Beauty Issaquah Highlands Grand Ridge Plaza
With women’s blowouts starting at $27, the stylists at Ulta Beauty create gorgeous looks for any occasion. A professional blowout can last for days, which makes it a great option for weekends. For men, haircuts start at $21. Plus, new clients receive 20 % off their first salon treatment. Ulta Salon is located inside Ulta Beauty at 1480 Highlands Dr. NE.

5. Satisfy your sweet tooth at PinkaBella Cupcakes.
PinkaBella Cupcakes Issaquah Grand Ridge PlazaChoose from dozens of cupcakes flavors baked fresh daily at the locally-owned artisan bakery. Brownie delight, caramel macchiato, limoncello, key lime pie, maple bar, and mint chocolate chip are just a few of the choices that PinkaBella offers. Treat yourself to one or share the love and bring home a four-pack. PinkaBella is located at 936 Park Drive NE.


Exploring Culture Through Food: Seattle Chefs Tour Vietnam

PeaceTrees Vietnam Thoa Nguyen Issaquah

PeaceTrees Vietnam Thoa Nguyen - Chefs touring schoolsFood is the starting point for how we communicate with other cultures. This statement embodies the philosophy of a recent cultural mission trip to Vietnam co-led by Chef Thoa Nguyen of Chinoise Sushi Bar & Asian Grill at Grand Ridge Plaza.

Under the banner of citizen diplomacy, Nguyen explored Vietnamese food with a group of Northwest chefs including Jerilyn Brusseau of Brusseau’s Kitchen, Christina Orchid of Red Rabbit Farm, and Katherine Kehrli, dean of Seattle Culinary Academy.

But the trip wasn’t solely about food. Hosted by PeaceTrees Vietnam, a humanitarian demining organization based in Seattle, their mission was to learn the dangers of unexploded landmines and bombs faced daily by Vietnamese families in Central Vietnam.

For two weeks the chefs engaged in humanitarian work while meeting Vietnamese cooks, farmers and food professionals, learning about their cuisine and farmland. Nguyen, who was born in Vietnam and immigrated to Colorado as a child, served in the dual role of interpreter and culinary guide—introducing American PeaceTrees Vietnam Thoa Nguyen Issaquahchefs to new dishes and ingredients.

“You could see the wheels turning in each chef’s mind as we visited markets and met farmers, sampling produce that is unknown in the U.S.,” explains Nguyen. “It was inspiring to learn the story of Pacific Basin Spice Company, which produces some of the finest cinnamon (cassia) in the world. It’s grows in cinnamon forests on small farms in a remote Northwest corner of Vietnam. Families have been cultivating these forests for more than 400 years, but can now prosper from its sale. Pacific Basin was the first company to export ‘the prized champagne of cinnamon’ from Vietnam after the normalization of U.S.-Vietnam relations. Today, it supplies brands like McCormick’s, Whole Foods Market and Costco.”
PeaceTrees Vietnam Women's Union

The chefs learned the urgency of increasing the amount of safely cleared land as essential for economic growth. Acre by acre, the safe clearance of unexploded munitions is increasing farmers’ ability to grow food safely. In remote Quang Tri Province, north of the former imperial capital of Hue and one of the most heavily UXO (unexploded ordnance) contaminated areas, farmers are now expanding cultivation of valuable crops such as black pepper. Near the former battleground of Khe Sanh, more farmers are growing aromatic coffee, including robusta and Arabica varieties. In six southern provinces, cacao beans are now being harvested productively—and purchased at premium prices from individual farmers—for single origin handmade chocolates made by international chocolatiers Marou Chocolates.

Vietnam Coffee PeaceTreesIn Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City), the chefs sampled vegetarian renditions of popular Vietnamese dishes, including dipping sauces. These vegetarian sauces are among the dishes that Nguyen wants to introduce at her Seattle-area restaurants due to the exquisite taste and healthy ingredients—two factors that resonate strongly with Northwest foodies.

While the chefs had the opportunity to dine at five-star restaurants, the best meal of their trip was classic street food: banh xeo (crepes) in Can Tho. “We wanted to have an adventure and asked a guide to take us to his favorite local place,” explains Nguyen. “The key for food stalls is to make just one dish and to make it extremely well. Banh xeo are sizzling crepes, but savory, not sweet. We went to a small alley, accessible to pedestrians only, and enjoyed incredible meal.”

The chefs also toured local schools and visited a kindergarten in a village that was once impacted by landmines, helping to plant trees on land that’s safe due to the efforts of PeaceTrees Vietnam.

PeaceTrees Vietnam Thoa Nguyen - Floating Market of Mekong Delta“One of my favorite moments on the trip was at the kindergarten,” recalls Nguyen. “The children sang for the chefs, and then the chefs spontaneously sang back with renditions of ‘Itsy Bitsy Spider’ and ‘Hokey Pokey’—they were a hit.”

To learn more about citizen diplomacy tours and landmine removal, visit PeaceTrees Vietnam. During the past 22 years, PeaceTrees’ efforts have safely removed nearly 100,000 explosive remnants of war; built 14 kindergartens, 11 libraries and 100 homes for landmine survivors; sponsored micro-credit income projects with women farmers; and hosted 61 citizen diplomacy delegations, planting more than 65,000 indigenous trees.


Men’s Health Month Heightens Awareness of Early Detection

NaturoMedica Naturopath Seattle Grand Ridge Plaza

NaturoMedica IssaquahContributed by NaturoMedica Physicians

June is Men’s Health Month and its purpose to bring awareness to men’s health issues while encouraging early detection and treatment of disease and disorders. What better time to discuss the topic of male sexual wellness?

It’s estimated that 40 to 70 percent of men experience sexual dysfunction at some time in their lifetime. For some, it can be daunting to talk about these issues or to seek help. However, sexual issues can be early markers of other diseases. For example, many men seen in emergency rooms for a cardiac event—such as a heart attack or stroke—suffered from erectile dysfunction or impotence three to five years earlier. Most often, these diseases can be effectively treated when detected early.

Male sexual health is such an integral part of a man’s life that these issues can have a large impact on aNaturoMedica Naturopath Issaquah Seattle man’s emotional well-being. While it can be intimidating for some men to discuss, sexual issues are very common and shouldn’t be an embarrassing topic. Many believe that male sexual health is driven by hormones, but there are numerous factors that can impact sexual wellness including a range of physical, social, interpersonal and psychological elements. It’s important to determine the underlying cause of these issues and seek care from a physician to develop a plan.

NaturoMedica physicians are well versed in assessing these concerns and can offer advanced cardiovascular testing to be sure circulation is at peak performance. Additionally, adrenal and/or hormone testing, which are important in the overall evaluation of male sexual health concerns, may be needed. We recognize that this is not always an easy or open topic for discussion, and encourage men to come in for an appointment. We invite you to read our blog to learn about common causes and approaches to treatment.

NaturoMedica Naturopath Issaquah SeattleNaturoMedica at Grand Ridge Plaza is a full-service naturopathic medical clinic that is home to seven licensed naturopathic physicians. The clinic offers naturopathic healthcare, acupuncture and IV (intravenous) therapy. NaturoMedica doctors can provide primary care or work with an established physician to address health concerns. The clinic also has a retail dispensary, which is open to the public and stocks vitamins, supplements and healthcare products. NaturoMedica is located at 1220 10th Ave NE. To learn more, call (425) 557-8900 or www.naturomedica.com.


Sip and Shop at Grand Ridge Plaza Wine & Beer Walk

Pours In Stores Issaquah Dru Bru Grand Ridge Plaza

Dru Bru Grand Ridge Plaza Pours In Stores IssaquahSip your way through Grand Ridge Plaza at Pours In Stores, a unique wine & beer walk on Friday, June 23. Browse the shops from 6 pm to 9 pm as you discover award-winning Northwest wineries, cideries and breweries on a beautiful summer evening in Issaquah Highlands.

Relax, unwind and taste the best of Big Block Brewery, Dru Bru, Finnriver Farm & Cidery, Ninkasi Brewing Co., Portland Cider Company, Resonate Brewery, Rogue Ales & Spirits, Sigillo Cellars, and Snoqualmie Falls Brewing. In addition, Zero One will pour their Golden Delicious Riesling and Luke Cabernet. At the Agave Cocina & Tequilas tasting station, sip the award-winning Lunazul Tequila and learn more about fine tequila.

Tickets are $30 and include six (6) tastings for 2 oz. pours and a 5 oz. commemorative glass. Don’t worry: if you would like to sample more, you can purchase extra tastes for $3 each. Pours In Stores tickets are on sale now at issaquahchamber.com.

Pours in Stores features live entertainment by The Max Cannella Jazz Band at the Plaza Fountain, plus light appetizers at select locations. You’ll find tasting stations throughout the shopping center, making it easy to blend sipping withPours In Stores Issaquah Portland Cider Grand Ridge Plaza shopping. At each tasting location, you can meet the winemakers and brewers, as well as the owners and managers of the shops and restaurants of Grand Ridge Plaza.

Presented by The Greater Issaquah Chamber of Commerce, Pours In Stores tasting locations include:

  • Agave Cocina & Tequilas
  • barre3
  • BevMo!
  • Chinoise Sushi Bar & Asian Grill
  • Civilized Nature Pet Supplies
  • Frame Central
  • Issaquah Highlands Dental Group
  • La Boutique Jolie
  • Sip at the wine bar & restaurant
  • Soma Intimates
  • Sorella Salon & Spa

Pours In Stores Issaquah Finnriver Cider Grand Ridge Plaza Event Information:

21+ only event.

Parking is available at the Park & Ride adjacent to BevMo and the lot adjacent to Issaquah Highlands Dental Group.

Registration is located at the Plaza Fountain between Big Fish Grill and Regal Cinemas Issaquah Highlands.

Public transit and shuttle buses within Issaquah are a convenient way to travel to the event. Learn more at IssaquahHighlands.com.

Thank you to the Greater Issaquah Chamber of Commerce and all participating stores for making this event possible!