Nirmala Nataraj

SF Station Writer

Nirmala Nataraj's Articles
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The Final Three Shows of 2007/2008
By Nirmala Nataraj (May 20, 2008)
Looking for a little summer entertainment? You’re in luck -- the next few weeks at the San Francisco Opera portend some of the most bombastic, entertaining productions of the summer season, ranging from anachronistic renditions of Norse mythology to insanity-addled tales of romance and longing. Simply pop out the binoculars and settle in for some classic divertissement, with a twist. More »
Rest and Relaxation at Milliken Creek Inn & Spa
By Nirmala Nataraj (May 14, 2008)
So you don’t know what to get Dad for Father’s Day? Instead of fussing over nondescript websites in search of a stirring yet appropriately generic gift for the big guy, consider allowing him a pas de deux with nature and the promise of a good night’s sleep. While you might not be able to get him to pack his bags in time for Sunday, a belated sojourn to Napa Valley’s premier riverside retreat, Milliken Creek Inn & Spa, will be sure to impress. More »
Around the World in Eight Days
By Nirmala Nataraj (May 06, 2008)
Tajikistan, Senegal, Hungary, Colombia, the Phillipines. Even if you’re a world traveler, it’s unlikely that you’ve trekked through all these terrains, but not to worry. If the globe-trotting budget is tight this summer, simply head on over to the 30th annual San Francisco Ethnic Dance Festival to get your requisite dose of culture. The festival, which has wowed thousands of audience members for three decades now, has challenged the already-permeable boundaries of world dance (despite its “ethnic” moniker), as well as viewers’ understanding of the intersections between dance, tradition, and artistic innovation. More »
A Nurturing Oasis in Our Bustling Chaos
By Nirmala Nataraj (May 06, 2008)
Sometimes, a haven away from home is necessary, especially if you’re plagued by officious roommates, a couch-potato significant other, or a floor plan that pretty much precludes luxurious lounging. Getting a facial or massage while you’re at it doesn’t hurt, either. Enter Marion Pernoux Henderson, the lovely, astonishingly grounded proprietress of Ensoma Spa. More »
Three Spas for Summer Pampering and Wellness
By Nirmala Nataraj (Apr 23, 2008)
Summer’s around the corner, but getting prepared for sandal weather is about more than making sure your nail polish isn’t chipped and the soles of your feet aren’t scaly. The following three spas all approach beauty and well-being with the kind of originality, attention to detail, and holistic techniques that’ll make you do an about-face when it comes to how you think about pampering. More »
Treat Your Mama Right!
By Nirmala Nataraj (Apr 09, 2008)
Okay, we know that when it comes to the scoop on where to get the best pedicure, massage or facial, you’re pretty much keeping mum unless one of your really close friends begs you hard enough for the name of the person responsible for your glowing visage. Normally, I’m all for keeping your beauty secrets on the D.L., but considering that Mother’s Day is coming up, it’s time to share the wealth with the person responsible for ensuring you have any sort of aesthetic inclinations at all. More »
A Mammoth Achievement
By Nirmala Nataraj (Apr 02, 2008)
The Berkeley Repertory Theatre’s masterful revision of the Mozart opera “The Marriage of Figaro” is less classical redux and more the sort of performance that brings a much-needed draught of fresh air to fustian art forms that have little or nothing to do with our lives. Theatre de la Jeune Lune’s “Figaro” throbs with the vigor and beauty of its operatic antecedent, but the company, who brought down the house two years ago with their traveling masterpiece “The Miser,” adds so many subtle embellishments (all without mangling the epic gorgeousness of Mozart and Lorenzo da Ponte’s beloved libretto) that the show transcends its formula quite effo More »
Affordable Services for the Urban Epicure
By Nirmala Nataraj (Mar 25, 2008)
A few days ago, I discovered a place that delivers on…well, exactly the opposite of all the things I lament in a respectable spa establishment. La Petite Rose is tucked away in an alcove just off Taraval Street (in the Sunset, in case you’re mulling). Set foot inside the cozy, modest-yet-luxurious digs, and it’s likely that the only sounds you’ll hear are the barks of neighborhood dogs or the clickety-clack of the surface street car. More »
At Frey Norris Gallery
By Nirmala Nataraj (Mar 18, 2008)
Christine Wong Yap and Jenifer K. Wofford are two San Francisco-based artists whose work -- collectively ranging from comic-book-esque sketches of immigrant nurses to installations of paper bags embossed with cheeky truisms -- is more preoccupied with instances of the mundane than anything else. But glancing through “Sorry", a collection of their recent works at the Frey Norris Gallery, you needn’t wade through the playful renderings of everyday vernacular and ritualized habits to get to the heart of the show, which exploits the manner in which language and image are often shrouded in indeterminate, constantly changing meanings. More »
Simple Luxury
By Nirmala Nataraj (Mar 04, 2008)
If the exorbitant weekend getaway needs to be deferred a bit—at least until after the ides of April—fear not. A relaxing escape with your sweetie or a gaggle of buddies needn’t be postponed for future prosperity or halcyon days. Excessive gourmandizing and large living aren’t good for the soul, anyhow—not when simple luxury lies just an hour north in Bodega Bay, a historical hamlet not quite off the beaten path but secluded enough for you to pretend it is. And best of all, the town’s eponymous Lodge & Spa offers a posh yet casual setting for out-of-towners intent on some affordable hedonism. More »
Nirmala Nataraj's Articles
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