“The perils of entrepreneurship”: Spa owner sets record straight
I am writing this in response to Ms. Geauanne Hill’s Jan. 31, 2008, letter to the editor.
Ms. Hill and her party came to the spa on Oct. 20, 2007, approximately
four weeks after it opened. This was a “shake out period” and some of
the initial staff is no longer in my employ. While Ms. Hill may have
had a student work on her, the student work was supervised by a
licensed cosmetologist and me. I gave foot massages, without charge, to
all members of the party because I sensed their unhappiness at the time.
Most of the information Ms. Hill gave regarding the spa is untrue or twisted to frame her point.
• Ninety-nine percent of the equipment in the spa is new. It so
happened that the water would not release from the foot tub of one
refurbished pedicure chair while Ms. Hill was here.
• The nail tech was not working for “tips only.” She received 45 percent of the fees in addition to gratuities.
• Initially, one charge was made for the group because it was indicated
that one person was paying for all three members of the party. In
response to Ms. Hill’s unhappiness, I gave her party a $15 discount ($5
• Most day spas do not have nail dryers, for the main reason that
people go to spas to relax, not to rush through their services. Regular
nail shops use dryers because their business is based on volume.
• Tipping is a regular feature of the spa industry and all
establishments try to give gentle reminders that gratuities are
accepted. When totaling the charges we will ask, “Do you wish to leave
a gratuity for your provider?” At no time have I ever said, “Aren’t you
going to tip her?” But, of course, some customers do not take such
Ms. Hill’s letter gives no indication that we have created a very
attractive, light, relaxing facility that is striving to provide
service and employment to Roxbury and South End residents. In our
efforts to insure that our service is satisfactory, we have instituted
measures to secure customer feedback. There is a suggestion box in the
front of the shop. And we have a Web site that allows for customer
input, suggestions and criticism.
The managers of Crosstown Center, Corcoran Jenison, have worked
diligently with me to brand the center and improve customer service.
For example, since Ms. Hill’s spa visit, clients are now allowed an
additional hour of free parking. The completion of construction and
occupation of the new office complex has also positively increased foot
traffic and brought a larger customer base to the center.
Halisi Day Spa & Salon