How to Open a Day Spa

- Oct 25, 2019-

How to Open a Day Spa

Author Info | Reader-Approved

Updated: July 29, 2019

Opening a day spa is a big undertaking. You should have some business sense as well as a background in the spa industry if you want to be successful at this venture. When you're ready for the challenge, it'll be just a few short months before you're open and offering spa services.


Opening a day spa is a bigspa industshort months before you're open and offering spa services.

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    Check out the competition.You'll need to know what they're offering and what price points they have chosen. Consider getting a massage or some spa services at these other establishments while doing your research.[1]
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    Choose what services you want to offer. This is just a rough draft of what you want to offer but it will help you determine how much space you need for your day spa. For example, you may want to offer pedicures and manicures, massage services, body wraps, facials, hair styling, spray tanning and a Vichy shower. Note that some services will affect the layout of your plumbing and electrical supply. Also, do some research to find out how much space each room will require.
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    Scout out a location that would work. You need to be some distance away from any other spas but located in a section of town that has wealthy or upscale residents. At the very least, you need to be easily accessible to the people who will use your services. You may choose to build your own building, renovate an existing building or try to find a building that will work as-is.[2]
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    Sign a lease or make a purchase and start building your new day spa. You may need to enlist the services of an architect if you're making structural changes to the building. If you're not building or doing renovations, start decorating and planning out how you will set up your treatment rooms.
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    Hire your employees. Determine this based on how many treatment rooms you have and what your operating hours will be. Different states require licenses for certain spa personnel, so ensure that your employees have a license as well as liability insurance, as required. Examples include massage therapists, anesthetics and nail technicians. In addition, you may need to get an establishment license for the spa itself and a sales tax ID number if you plan to offer retail products.[3]
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    Buy equipment for your lobby and spa treatment rooms. Depending on what you offer, you will need a front counter or desk, computer system with scheduling software, product shelving, hair styling stations and tools, massage tables, pedicure chairs, manicure tables, facial equipment and linens for every room. You will also need relaxing music to use throughout the facility.
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    Put the finishing touches on your menu of spa treatments. You'll need to think of names for each treatment and set your prices.
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    Get your utilities turned on if they haven't already been turned on for construction. This includes water and sewer, electricity, gas, trash service, phone and Internet.
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    Market your day spa. Put up exterior signage, set up a website, take out ads, send out press releases, do interviews and pass out fliers and coupons. Do as much as your budget allows.[4]
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    Plan a grand opening party. You can offer complementary mini-treatments to guests, give out menus, serve light snacks and talk to guests about the value your spa services can add to their lives. Offer a discount to anyone who schedules an appointment while at the party.