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Spa Snapshot: Besu Salon and Day Spa
By: Cathy Christensen
Posted: September 29, 2011, from the October 2011 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.
Besu provides a luxurious oasis in the middle of the hustle and bustle of New York City.
Continuing its successful first year in its new location, BeSu Salon and Day Spa was recently named the Repêchage Spa de Beauté Day Spa of the Year. “I wanted BeSu to be a luxurious oasis in the middle of the city, where clients could run in and get a facial,” says owner Rebecca Lieberman of the spa portion of the business. Originally a 480-square-foot hair salon, BeSu recently moved to its 1,900-square-foot space where Lieberman was finally able to realize her goal of opening the spa portion of the business, which takes up at least 800 square feet of the new location.. Initially, the salon’s existing clients were unsure about taking advantage of the business’ spa services. “It took a while for people to trust us, but it’s beginning to really pay off. So now we’re growing our client list through word-of-mouth and unbelievable treatments,” she says.
Another more unique method that has been successful in spreading the word about the spa is television. A variety of popular programs, including Celebrity Apprentice and Marry Me in NYC, have either used the spa as a location or focused on Lieberman herself. Never one to pass up a chance to promote the business, every time a program airs, Lieberman invites all of her clients for a viewing party, complete with cocktails, appetizers and a 20% discount for appointments made during the event. And when it comes to her ability to take advantage of these incredible public relations opportunities, it’s all about connections ... and hard work. “I’m always on the lookout for opportunities and a lot of opportunities come to me. I do a lot of charity events and gift-basket giving, and it does come back,” she emphasizes.
As for the facility itself, the services take place in the soundproof spa area, in four state-of-the-art treatment rooms decorated with mirrors and Jerusalem stone for an endless, fluid feel. A popular option for clients at BeSu are spa parties, during which the spa portion of the facility can be closed down for the privacy and enjoyment of the participants. “The spa isn’t that big, so if we do a spa party, they are able to just have the place to themselves,” explains Lieberman.
As far as the business’ success, Lieberman credits BeSu’s one-on-one style. “My clients all get to know me, and we have a lot of fun things we do. It’s like coming to a friend’s, and you have a good gossip and a drink and you get your hair and skin done,” she says. “We’re not just a business; we are a group of women. In the heavily corporate environment of New York City, this is a small mom-and-pop ... except it’s just a mom. There are few businesses like this here.”
And it is the personal touch in a largely impersonal environment that has carved out a very successful niche for Lieberman and BeSu. “People here ask how your day is, and we all actually care about your answer,” says Lieberman, and it is this small gesture that, in New York City, says it all.