Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Huffington Post offers Oasis from the RNC stress


Joel Stein stood barefoot on a yoga mat, arched his back into a crescent moon and touched his toes. There were flickering candles, fresh white flowers and the substantial scent of grapefruit. Even the floor felt squishy. "You will never get a straight, male Republican to do this," he said.

Stein, a Time magazine columnist, came to the Huffington Post's Oasis at Aja Channelside with other celebrities, reporters and political types in town for the Republican National Convention. Those with convention credentials were invited to eat, sleep and meditate on their choices, their votes, their lives. The free perks didn't hurt.

The lounge simmered to a start Monday. Evan Handler, Charlotte's bald husband from Sex and the City, sat on a plush white couch and thumbed through his phone. Arianna Huffington, founder of the Huffington Post, licked a frozen Greek yogurt pop pocked with strawberries.

Huffington explained her concept.

"Four years ago, I fainted from exhaustion, hit my head, broke my cheekbone and got five stitches," she said. "That's what got me looking at my life."

She started studying sleep, increasing her meditation and finding ways to relax every day, not just on vacations. She opened a small Oasis in Denver at the 2008 Democratic National Convention. In 2012, she decided to do it big at both conventions, first Tampa and then Charlotte, N.C. She partnered with Off the Mat and Into the World to bring yoga lessons to the lounges. She enlisted local massage therapists and experts from Harvard to give sleep consultations. She invented an app called "GPS for the Soul," which lets you take your heart rate and look at pictures of your family (if you like your family) to calm down.

Other perks? Turkey meatballs, vegan sweet corn chowder, gluten-free chicken with polenta and lemon-spiced barramundi. Coconut water, smoothies and root iced tea. A futuristic EnergyPod for 20-minute naps with ambient noise. Bottles of "Mint Romney" and " 'O'Bama" orange body lotion, slogan, "May the best scent win!" And, of course, yoga with Huffington's personal instructor, Seane Corn.

Stein finished his session with Corn while someone filmed him for Time.

"How do you feel?" said Corn.

"Ready to go out there and kill," said Stein.

He reconsidered.

"I feel peace."

Stephanie Hayes can be reached or (727) 893-8857. Follow her on Twitter at @stephhayes.

Huffington Post offers Oasis from the RNC stress 08/27/12 [Last modified: Monday, August 27, 2012 10:21pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. NFL commissioner calls Trump remarks on national anthem 'divisive'


    HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — The commissioner of the National Football League says President Donald Trump's comments about players who kneel during the national anthem are "divisive" and show an "unfortunate …

    President Donald Trump walks off the stage after he speaks at campaign rally in support of Sen. Luther Strange, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Huntsville, Ala. [Associated Press]
  2. Forecast: Tampa Bay's first fall weekend brings scattered showers


    It may officially be fall, but Tampa Bay won't have any cooler temperatures this weekend.

    Tampa Bay's 7 day forecast. [WTSP]
  3. Romano: The choice does not have to be poverty or gentrification

    Local Government

    The memories must be protected. The music and the lore, too.

    The owner of Sylvia's Queen of Soul Food is refusing to give the city information on the restaurant's sales as required by his contract to occupy the city-owned Manhattan Casino. The information is needed to calculate whether the nonprofit Urban Development Solutions, headed by Larry Newsome, owes the city more than the $3,000 monthly base rent.
  4. Tests show North Korea earthquake not caused by nuclear test


    SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korea's weather agency said a magnitude 3.2 earthquake was detected in North Korea on Saturday close to where the country recently conducted a nuclear test, but it assessed the quake as natural.

    People watch a TV news program reporting North Korea's earthquake, at Seoul Railway Station in Seoul, South Korea, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. South Korea's weather agency said an earthquake was detected in North Korea on Saturday around where the country recently conducted a nuclear test, but it assessed the quake as natural. The signs read " The weather agency said a magnitude 3.0 earthquake was detected in North Korea." [Associated Press]
  5. New earthquake, magnitude 6.1, shakes jittery Mexico


    MEXICO CITY — A strong new earthquake shook Mexico on Saturday, causing new alarm in a country reeling from two still-more-powerful quakes this month that have killed nearly 400 people.

    Locals play pool at a venue in Mexico City's La Condesa neighborhood, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, four days after the 7.1 earthquake. The upscale Mexico City neighborhood was one of the hardest hit, with more than a half-dozen collapsed buildings in the immediate vicinity. The few Condesa residents who ventured out Friday night said they were anxious for relief from an anguishing week. [Associated Press]