Mindfulness on Fifth Avenue

The new Urban Meditation aims to demystify the mental fortitude practice.

BY April 1, 2023
Urban Meditation
Tina Hallett founded Urban Meditation to share mindfulness with others. The new Naples location has a crystal-filled storefront and a designated meditation studio in the back. (Photo by Kelly Jones)

The idea of meditation continues to garner buzz. Some science points to mindfulness’ ability to dampen activity in the amygdala—which helps regulate emotions and process fear—and thicken the prefrontal cortex, where complex and rational thinking occurs. And, though the science isn’t bulletproof, plenty of anecdotal insight tells us that quieting the mind, focusing on the now and working with the breath reduces stress and anxiety. But for many people, making the time to meditate—let alone doing it properly—can be a challenge. Enter: Urban Meditation.

Tina Hallett founded Urban Meditation with two partners in Indianapolis in 2020 after discovering how meditation benefit her health. “I was going through a lot of stress and anxiety and hired a meditation coach,” Tina says. “She trained me to use meditation, and it worked for me—and it made me want to bring it out into the world.” With the success of the Indiana location, Tina expanded the business to Naples, with a place on Fifth Avenue South, last September. “There’s great energy down in Florida,” she says.

Peeking in from the windows, you might think this 1,000-square-foot outpost is a jewelry boutique. Inside, gleaming shelves sparkle with crystals of all hues, shapes and sizes. Signs explain each stone’s reported benefits, from harnessing wisdom to decreasing worry to bolstering resilience. “It’s a cheerful, happy place,” Tina says. Tucked into the back are two private rooms where Tina offers 30-minute, private meditation sessions on the hour, seven days a week.   

Part of the appeal of Urban Meditation is the accountability it brings: Just like signing up for a fitness class, you’re more likely to meditate if you commit to a date and a time. “Many people struggle to do it consistently,” she says. The studio also offers an environment that eliminates the to-dos that distract people trying to meditate at home. “It’s a place that’s not active for the client, where there’s space and time to decompress,” she adds.

Inside, the studio’s meditation beds are made from volcanic rock, which Tina says is rich in minerals and emits infrared heat, said to have detoxifying properties. During a session, she’ll get a client comfortable with bolsters, pillows and essential oils, then arrange a series of crystals before starting the guided meditation. “The crystals carry an electric charge, a pulse that helps amplify our frequencies,” Tina says. All the elements work together to ease doubts and negative feelings and calm the nervous system. “This is mental and emotional exercise,” she says.

Meditation Studio
The studio is designed so clients can show up, no preparation or experience necessary. Tina’s goal: make meditation easy and natural. (Photo by Kelly Jones)

Arber Balidemaj has become a regular client. “With the crystals and essential oils, you are physically, spiritually and emotionally healing throughout her process,” Arber says.

Tina lowers the barrier to entry so anyone can feel its benefits. “So often things seem so overwhelming that we just don’t start,” she says. She wants practicing meditation to be as easy and natural as signing up for a fitness class or making an appointment to get your nails done; it’s scheduled self-care. The studio is designed so clients can just show up—no preparation necessary. “You don’t have to be experienced,” she says.

The goal is to make space in the mind. “We declutter your thoughts so that you can gain clarity,” Tina says. “When you have clarity, you can make the right decisions.” 

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