My RI Life: Susan Benzuly of Evolve Apothecary & Spa in Providence
My name is Sue. I am a wife, mom, nurse, store owner (I am co-owner of Evolve Apothecary And Spa on Hope Street in PVD.), and a lover of the outdoors. I have lived in Rhode Island for over 20 years now (Wow!) and am madly in love with all that our little state has to offer.
I absolutely am not a lover of malls - I do, however, enjoy shopping local in RI. There are so many great little stores around me on Hope Street, from Stock (for the part of me that loves to cook) to LULI (for clothes) and Kreatelier (for home goods and fabric). You really can't go wrong on Hope St! My other favorites include Nava and Capucine, both also in Providence, as well as Kate & Company in Bristol. What I love most about these stores is how helpful and hands on the owners are. That's what keeps me going back again and again.
Whether I'm pedaling along the back roads in Burrillville and Foster-Glocester or the bike path along the East Bay, paddling on a board or kayak in the cove or standing in the surf of Narragansett Bay, I am forever grateful for what our little state has to offer. You can wake up in the country, spend the day at the beach, and finish up the evening in the city at WaterFire.
My husband and I follow a plant based diet and find Providence one of the easiest places to dine out because there are so many places that offer delicious, meat free meals. Broadway Bistro, an intimate space with a great wine list, is always accommodating, often whipping up something completely off the menu. Wara Wara has quickly become a favorite. I mean seriously, I crave Brussel sprouts! Tallulah's Taqueria is a favorite for takeout. My husband says it's totally authentic; I just know it's delicious and their chips are sinful! Rasoi is another go-to for Chana Masala that has just the right amount of sweet and spice. We also love heading to Figidini's for a Bloody Mary, made with their very own San Marzano tomato mix, and to nibble on almonds, olives and grilled artichokes. And how could I talk about great places for plant-based eats in the Providence area without mentioning the holy trinity of The Grange, Wildflour, and Garden Grille?
After studying at both the Community College of RI and Salve Regina University, I worked as a nurse at Hasbro Children's Hospital and Rhode island Hospital. My interest in wellness grew over the years, as I practiced nursing, and I came to the conclusion that so many of our illnesses and diseases are absolutely preventable, or manageable, just by changing a few habits. That's when I started really paying attention to what I put into my body, what I put on my body, and how often I moved my body.
My interest in wellness, and a phone call from my dear friend Yolande, a fellow nurse who is now my business partner, led to the opening of Evolve Apothecary And Spa. We put our heart and soul into curating products from Rhode Island (whenever we can) and elsewhere that are not only clean, pure, and natural, but also effective and affordable. We carry skincare for women and men, products for babies and the home, and gifts. Also, we recently added a spa that offers amazing facials - so good for your skin and your soul!
For more from Sue & Evolve Apothecary And Spa:
Photo Credits: All photos, except for the restaurant related ones, courtesy of Susan Benzuly. Restaurant pictures courtesy of PattyJ.com