Our Providers


Danielle Koppel


Danielle has dedicated the majority of her life to the study and practice of the healing performing arts. She focuses her experience and attention on the cultivation and magnification of loving light through creativity, vitality, and inspiration as it pertains to the nexus that exists between health, beauty, and art. Danielle is a Reiki master teacher, a licensed aesthetician, a sound healer, kirtan wallah, and yoga teacher.

Danielle is grateful to be a part of the co-creation of Hillsborough Spa and Day Retreat. “It’s amazing to experience what such strong intention can create through healing and beaut,” she says. “From the noble and talented owners, through the incredibly gifted and uplifting artists and managers, to the lovely guests it attracts–magical moments each!”

Kristen Commons


Many crazy years in the ad agency business drove Kristen to take refuge in a variety of day spas. There, she restored a bit of sanity, perked up her skin, and added a little pep in her step. Talented skin therapists showed Kristen tremendous benefits of healthy skin care, and the restorative nature of hands-on treatment. A true believer, she left advertising and entered the skin care industry fifteen years ago. Working in marketing and sales for skin care companies, spas, and schools in the US and in New Zealand provided broad knowledge, but ultimately Kristen wanted to work directly with clients in the treatment room.
Now a licensed esthetician, Kristen loves to give relaxing facials and equally enjoys working with clients to achieve their skin care goals through targeted treatments at the spa and at home.

Vickie Raynor


Vickie has been a licensed aesthetician since 2013 and enjoys having a career that makes people feel good about themselves. Prior to becoming licensed in this field, she enjoyed working for a number of years in emergency services as an EMT and 911 telecommunicator. When a move prompted the need for a less stressful career, she decided to go back to school and discovered aesthetics. Vickie loves to bring her clients to total relaxation through facials and she has a passion for teaching her clients how to properly care for their skin. In her spare time, she’s an avid reader and enjoys trivia and also has fun helping her husband with events where he is a vocalist and DJ—he has an amazing voice and she never gets tired of hearing him sing. They’re raising two young daughters who also share a love of music. Vickie is from Hillsborough and is excited to have an opportunity to work in her hometown.  

Massage Therapy

Jenn Browning

Massage Therapist

Jenn, licensed massage and bodywork therapist, has always believed in the body’s innate ability to heal itself, given the proper tools. Since she is passionate about movement, nature, and whole foods, it just made sense to find ways to share these ideas with others. After graduating from Body Therapy Institute in Silk Hope, her main field of study has been structural therapy. With a certificate in advanced myofascial techniques, she finds restrictions and systematically unwinds them, aiding her clients in achieving a sense of ease in their bodies.

Sara Gallagher

Massage Therapist

Sara has always held a fascination for the human body. What began as intrigue into the physical workings of our many systems and functions soon became an awe for the physical, spiritual, and mental potential of each individual. The capacity for change and growth within us all continues to fascinate her in her work as an LMBT. Sara believes we all have the potential to function with less resistance and greater ease in all areas of life. As an LMBT, she aims to support each client as they uncover the tools they need to reduce the resistance and increase the ease they experience in their daily lives.

Hannah Byrum

Massage Therapist

Hannah Byrum, a graduate of the Body Therapy Institute in Siler City, has been practicing massage therapy since 2012. Hannah specializes in myofascial massage, sometimes called deep tissue massage. While Hannah doesn’t work as deep as some therapists, she finds that she can get a lot of depth with no discomfort by going very slowly and allowing muscles time to release under her touch. A lot of her clients find this gentle yet deep work to have an entrancing effect. Hannah suggests a 60-minute massage for relaxation and renewal, and a 90-minute massage if you have tight, sore muscles or other issues that warrant some extra attention.

Ren Pollen

Massage Therapist

Ren is a Licensed Massage and Bodywork Therapist, Certified Integrative Reflexologist, and graduate of Body Therapy Institute. In her own life, she has found bodywork to be an integral part of self-care. Nurturing the physical body calms the mind and revitalizes the spirit. She feels it is important to work with the body and uses breath work to help her clients soften and relax. This allows her to work deeply, but gently. She endeavors to leave each client more grounded, centered, and aware of themselves.

Todd Pursell

Massage Therapist

Todd has been massaging friends and family from a young age, which culminated with his graduation from the Body Therapy Institute in 2011. He brings an awareness of the mind/body interaction as well as a whole-body approach to his massage. He is able to perform relaxing massage, help to work out a chronic injury, or offer some combination of both.

Todd’s modalities include Swedish, deep tissue, and myofascial massage. His areas of expertise include neck, shoulders, lower back, and the gluteal region. He hopes that he can provide every client with the relief that they seek. He will also attempt to give an understanding of why the condition presented itself as well as possible ways to prevent and minimize pains in the future.

Our Management

Dara Fort

Spa Director

As a yoga teacher for the past 20 years and with a background in managing people and business, Dara has been happily taking care of people most of her adult life. Through movement or management, she truly enjoys creating a special environment within which she can connect to those she is serving. She has always believed that experiences are more valuable than things and that what we exchange with one another is often our greatest gift.

A self described worker-bee, she has a hard time sitting still but has recently had profound moments of stillness and peace in the spa sauna and steam room.

Our Owners

Hillsborough Spa and Day Retreat is locally owned by Lies Sapp and Sage Rountree, owners of the Carolina Yoga Company (Carrboro YogaDurham Yoga, and Hillsborough Yoga) and Carolina Massage Institute, beneath the spa. After years of gratifying research at spas around the state, the country, and the world, we are delighted to share this beautiful space with you. We created a spa that reflects our personal taste and deep appreciation of the balance to be found in stillness. We hope you love it, and we are eager to hear your feedback. Please write us at info@hillsboroughspa.com any questions or comments.

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