After nine successful years and a gorgeous new location, things just keep getting better for Barefoot Beach Tanning and its enthusiastic owner, Kristin D’Ambrosio.
When a longtime indoor tanner with nearly 20 years of retail sales and management experience wants to open a business, a tanning salon is the most obvious choice. Such was the case for Kristin D’Ambrosio, who purchased Barefoot Beach Tanning in Marietta, GA. “At first, my plan was to build my own salon from the ground up,” said Kristin, “but then I found out how much that would cost. I began looking for an existing salon to purchase instead, and as luck would have it, the owner of Barefoot Beach Tanning was looking to sell her business. I was very excited about this because she ran a successful business and kept her salon and equipment in great shape.” Kristin purchased the business and took over operations on October 1, 2004.
While Barefoot Beach Tanning was a thriving turnkey operation, Kristin still had to deal with the learning curve that all first-time salon owners face. “To be a successful business owner, I knew I couldn’t just turn over my salon to someone else,” she said. “If I wanted it to survive and thrive, I would have to be there, and I was very positive about this experience. The very first thing I learned about indoor tanning is that it’s a service business dedicated to making people look and feel good, so I did everything I could to make sure my clients’ experience at Barefoot Beach was the best one they could have. When people came in to tan, I made a note of all the young ladies who were genuinely happy, friendly and motivated, and these were the people I hired to help me.”
After nine years, Kristin was forced to find a new location for her thriving salon. “The shopping plaza was being redeveloped and many of the businesses there were given 120 days to leave. At first, the news crushed me because I felt that after surviving the recession, Tan Tax and negative press, I was finally in a place to start turning things around,” she said. What seemed like a disaster turned out to be a blessing in disguise. Kristin says, “I pulled myself together and found a new location about a mile down the road. The move gave me the opportunity to customize the interior exactly the way I wanted to, which our clients love!” The new Barefoot Beach location features 13 Ergoline tanning units and the Auto Revolution sunless spray-tanning booth by Norvell Skin Solutions.
As Kristin continues to improve upon Barefoot Beach Tanning’s success, she says she considers opening a second location. Whether that happens or not, she still plans to continue enjoying her time in the sun biz. “This is such a fun career!” she exclaimed. “I’m surrounded by so many young employees, which keeps me feeling young, and every day we’re making clients look good and feel better about themselves. I could do this forever.”
A 14-year industry veteran, John "Ribby" Ribner has written hundreds of
articles for IST Magazine and, as Director of Editorial Content, has also
helped guide the publication's evolution. Ribby is a graduate of Central
Michigan University's journalism program and has brought many years of newspaper reporting experience to his position of Head Writer. He is also the author of three novels, "Legacy of the Bear," "Prophecy of the Bear" and "World So Dark."
Copyright 2020 ist Magazine