Throughout this journey we have utilized our network to make this dream into a reality. Our venture has been based upon the passion and vision we share. We are so grateful for the incredible amount of support surrounding us.
Lets go back to mid February. I was highlighting my client, Marilee Rhodes (a fabulous woman), and we were talking about the beginning progress of Steel + Lacquer. She was curious if we had a real estate agent yet, which we did not. We had a few leads, but no agent set in stone. Marilee had a contact in the industry and offered to reach out for referrals. Then boom, in my chair, an email was sent which became a pivotal moment for Steel + Lacquer. The following day while driving to teach a class in Sacramento for label.m, I received a phone call from Judi Basolo. I soon learned that Judi was a well respected real estate broker for Paragon Commercial Brokerage. We exchanged information about the dream salon and booked an appointment to meet in person.
Lena and I met with Judi that following week and discussed our desires for the location of Steel + Lacquer. Towards the end of the meeting, with a big smile on her face, she handed over a folder to each of us. We opened it and there laid a brochure with NEMA written across the front. Funny enough, we had already played with the idea of our salon being in the NEMA building. Lena and I spent a few afternoons walking up and down the streets of Mid-Market visualizing our salon in the neighborhood. Judi reached out to her friend Erika Elliot (with Cornish and Carey Commercial) who was the listing agent associated with NEMA. The retail space at NEMA wasn’t even publicly listed, but due to Judi’s relationship with Erika we were given the opportunity to take a look at the 2000 square foot space located on the ground floor. From that point on, we were very interested in making that the home of Steel + Lacquer. We began our mission in making sure that was the right decision for our business. There were 3 things heavily persuading us for the success of the business and that was location, location, and location!
Mid-market is a huge destination for people to live, work, and soon, get their hair done! Twitter moved to 10th and Market in 2012 and was a massive game changer for the neighborhood. Since Twitter has moved, Uber, Square, One Kings Lane, and Dolby have also taken space in the same block. Not to mention the soon to be open Market on Market, which will also be a huge asset to creating more foot traffic in the area. Most of all NEMA has 754 units (potential clients) sitting right above of what we were hoping to be the location for Steel + Lacquer. In a four block radius, there will eventually be 4,500 residential units that will house even more potential clients in need of a fabulous salon for any of their hair desires. We spent 6 months making sure (lots of paper work) that NEMA was the right decision for Steel + Lacquer. On August 26th, 2014, Lena and I signed our lease for 14 10th street. We couldn’t have been more ecstatic to find a home for Steel + Lacquer.
We have so much to be thankful for, especially the team of people that helped us get this far. Judi Basolo is a shining star and truly showed us what it was like to have such an amazing, diligent, and genuine agent. She found our dream salon a home. Not just any home, but a home in the most luxurious building in Mid-Market! The experience was only challenging because of the current market, but Judi was that quenching glass of water after running a marathon. She did everything in her power to make it happen. Keeping us informed and feeling secure were not foreign acts for Judi Basolo. Thank you Paragon! Alongside Judi, our team of advisors have been so inspiring. Witnessing their work ethic and feeling their passion has helped guide Lena and I into an incredible direction.
The location was a huge part of our brand for Steel + Lacquer and we are so excited to begin our sexy relationship with Mid-Market and the NEMA community. After flirting with NEMA for many months, we can now say we are in a full blown committed relationship.
I want to give a special thanks to our contact at NEMA, Roman Speron! He is the Regional Manager at Crescent Heights. Thank you for believing in Lena and I, and for allowing this dream of owning a salon in Mid-Market come true!