US group invests £1m in city centre flexible workspace for hair and beauty sector

Phenix Salon Suites on Deansgate
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US brand Phenix Salon Suites has launched its first UK venue in Manchester city centre, creating a new home for hair and beauty in the North.

The first of its kind in the UK, Phenix Salon Suites is a flexible workplace for hair and beauty professionals, offering 29 boutique studios where creatives can run their own businesses in their own intimate salon spaces at the new 6,500 sq ft location at Number One Deansgate.

More than £1m has already been invested into Europe’s first Phenix Salon Suites, which will allow entrepreneurs to build their own brand in the heart of the city centre, at one of the most aspirational addresses in Manchester.

Already a huge hit in the USA, with more than 300 locations and partners including LL Cool J, in excess of 50% of the 29 studios in Manchester have been leased and tenants include self-employed hair stylists, massage therapists, nail techs, skincare professionals and makeup artists.

Phenix Salon Suites was originally launched in Colorado Springs in 2007 as founder and entrepreneur Gina Rivera created the brand to offer salon professionals an alternative to either renting a chair in an existing salon or dealing with the challenges of owning their own salon.

Leases operate month-to-month, with no long term contracts to enable tenants to work with flexibility.

Hair and beauty professionals leasing a space in Phenix’s first UK location can focus on growing their client base, network, skills, and income all in a professional setting.

As well as utilities covered within the cost, tenants will also be offered uniquely designed development tools and complementary education in addition to a free online appointment system via ‘Gina’s Platform’, an app created by company founder Gina Rivera.

Each unit can be totally personalised by its tenant, with each given the option to decorate or brand it however they wish to create their very own salon.

Hairdressers and barbers will be provided with a backwash, styling chair and hair trolley, while nail artists or beauty therapists will be offered sink units and storage trolleys. Each tenant will also have access to a break room/kitchen space, as well as an on-site laundry room with free use of commercial equipment for fast washing and drying.

John Gillespie, operations director of the UK & Europe, said “In what has been a really tough year for both the industry and the self employed, our team has made a £1m investment in Manchester to allow entrepreneurs in hair and beauty to create something of their own.

One of the 29 units

“We know how hard it is to set up a salon from scratch, and even more so when it comes to finding something affordable in the middle of an incredible city like Manchester. There are already over 300 Phenix venues in the USA so we know this model works.”

He added: “We chose Manchester as our first location here in the UK as it’s already a leader in the hair and beauty industry. There are so many creatives and entrepreneurs, we knew immediately it was the right home for us. It’s already been a huge success and we can’t wait to expand across the UK as the business grows here in Europe.”

Phenix says it is the first boutique salon suite concept to offer salon and business professionals the opportunity to own and operate their own salon type of business without the hassle and expense of facility management and maintenance. Each luxury studio is kitted out with high quality equipment so that the tenant can concentrate on running the business, without worrying about the costs or set up of utilities, and minimal start-up costs.

Phenix Salon Suites recently announced that rapper LL Cool J had partnered with the brand’s largest franchisee in the USA, to open locations of the salon suite franchise in New York markets such as Queens, Brooklyn and Manhattan, and will grow the concept’s footprint in Los Angeles.