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CALABASH—Totally Chic Salon & Spa in Calabash has been named one of the 200 fastest-growing salons in North America by the editors of Salon Today magazine, a business publication for salon and spa owners.
Owner Karen Hardee said recently she was excited to learn the news after spending the last 14 years expanding the business.
Last year, Karen and her husband, Shane, received a letter from Salon Today stating the business had been nominated for the magazine’s list. The owners were required to fill out an application and send in financial statements. In January, the Hardees found out the salon was chosen in the top 200.
“When people hear about [the honor], they say ‘in little Calabash?’” Karen Hardee said. “I say, ‘Yep. Little Calabash made it.’”
Hardee, originally from New Jersey, opened the shop with her mother, Eileen Dunlevy, 14 years ago as a hair salon in a 560-square-foot space.
“We just did hair, and we started building from there,” she said.
“As the county grew, we got more demand for more services.”
About nine years ago, Hardee expanded the salon, which is now a “full service salon and spa” featuring hairstyling, nail care, skin care, massages and body waxing and employs 12 people, while Dunlevy retired and let her daughter take over the business.
“We try to cater to our clientele by giving them the services they want and deserve. That has definitely set us apart from the rest,” Hardee said.
“The way the area has grown has tremendously helped us grow. Every year, it’s getting bigger and bigger and bigger. We have a fabulous team.”
The magazine’s 11th annual “Salon Today 200” profiled the selected salons in its January 2008 issue. The 200 salons were selected from applications submitted by Salon Today readers, representatives of about 25,000 salons and spas. The magazine honored the applicants who posted the highest increases in gross sales between 2005 and 2006, and who were on track to increase sales significantly in 2007, according to a news release from the company.
“The eleventh annual issue of the Salon Today 200 features growing salons with excellent customer service, innovative marketing and top education for employees,” stated Laurel Smoke, editor-in-chief of Salon Today.
For a salon to be named to the Salon Today 200, it had to meet the following criteria:
•The salon is a provider of professional salon services including one or more of the following: hair care, nail care, skin care, body care or spa treatments;
•It generated gross annual sales revenues of at least $250,000;
•The salon’s revenues were greater in 2006 than 2005, and projected to be even higher in 2007;
•The owner charted his or her business financial growth for the past three years and shared information about the service and product categories that fueled the salon’s growth; and
•The applicant submitted financial documentation, such as a tax return or certified letter from an accountant, to verify revenues.
Growth-oriented salons of every type and size participated and were showcased in the issue.