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Saturday, October 28, 2017


Getting to the heart & soul of hospitality style starts with understanding the true meaning of hospitality.  Essentially, it comes down to this:  “the relationship between a host and a guest, wherein the host receives the guest with goodwill, including reception, service and entertainment”.

Once you embrace all this encompasses, it becomes apparent why the hospitality style trend is happening and continues to evolve in today's salon and spa environment.  Anything and everything you do to attract new guests, retain your existing clientele and compete with the nail salon down the street can be defined by your goodwill, your reception, your service and your entertainment.  Hospitality style is the hallmark of your business.  How well does your interior design support this level of goodwill?

Hospitality style is not defined by whether your space is “glamorous and chic” or “simple and modern”.  You can have a fun and quirky space or a California-vibe happening with a mid-century modern feel and still have hospitality style.  Or not.  So what is hospitality style and how do you get it?

Hospitality style can be explained by the finer points of your interior.  The unique and memorable details that become part of the experiences your guests take with them…. the inherit character of the space and how it positively resonates with your guest…these are the talking points that keep guests coming back for more and these are ones that they tell their family and friends.  It is how your business stands out and how you entertain and service your guests.  Visual distinction and one-of-a-kind, comfortable details is what makes hospitality style – your hospitality style.

The more refinement you put into the design, the more hospitable your space will be.  Hospitality design is in the extra-ordinary particulars:  locally curated art, a cozy pedicure chair, a custom chandelier, an unexpected shape, a dimensional architectural wall, a cool wall covering, a bold color on the ceiling, a luxurious foot bath, in-direct lighting in a niche.  I think you get the picture.  

Remember, authenticity is at the core of hospitality and your guests will know when a detail is not genuine.  Copy cats beware.  Authenticity comes from innovation – meaning don’t do what everyone else is doing.  Create your own “memorable detail”.  Simply adding a water feature to your space can be disingenuous.  Guests also appreciate it when details are not forced upon them.  It is all about great design and innate balance.

Build the type of character within your space that is true to your brand, your region and your clientele, and match that style with a killer service.  You are the host, so bring good cheer to your guests for good business sense and hospitality style. 

Michele Pelafas Inc is a leading design firm in the spa, beauty and medical spa industry.  Clients include spas, salons, women's and wellness centers, medical spas, nail salons, healthcare facilities, hotel spas and fitness centers. For more information about how Michele Pelafas can bring your hospitality style to life contact us on our website today! 

Sunday, October 15, 2017

The Creative Process & My Inspiration

Recently, a client asked me about my technique and how I find originality in my designs.  As I was reflecting on this conversation, my thoughts turned to my creative path, my unfolding of ideas, my expression of insight and how it all starts with that beautiful muse I call inspiration.

Inspiration drives me, so I intentionally seek inspiration.  It fuels the industry that I'm in.  Recognizing what inspires you becomes a reflex because in this field you are continuously envisioning how one element can tie into the next and what product it would work best with.  I am most inspired when I am in a quiet place or during travel, so I try to find multiple ways to carve out that time.

My visit to The Hotel Plaza Athenee in Paris was beyond exquisite, almost like a fairy tale.
It is classical and whimsical at the same time.
The Dior Institute lives here and so does our Pedicure Furniture.  What a dream!

Nature, from her rugged textures to her smoother elements, causes me to think of how patterns and lines work in sync with one another.  This is partly why I am often inspired by the textiles found in fabrics and wall coverings, in addition to interesting sculptural materials and finishes.  Because I am deeply connected to the design community, I am always exposed to materials that are unique and different.  I see a gorgeous fabric and I begin to imagine a piece, such as a pedicure chair, that would bring out the best in the fabric.

I am completely inspired by this over-the-top fabric.
I see this translating to both apparel and a chic interior.

I am also inspired by fashion and art.  I appreciate how creative the human mind is and for me a unique handbag or modern sculpture provides a tangible "voice" to that side of humanity.  Seeing the classical architecture of Paris or spending an afternoon absorbed in a NYC Fashion Week frenzy feeds my creative side.  

I am front row at this Neiman Marcus fashion show taking in the layers,
the textures, the colors and pure style.  Great handbag!

I read a lot of books and magazines, the ones that I can physically touch, not the digital kind.  While I appreciate the digital world, I am most engaged in the physical and the physical is where I find motivation.  To lay something out before you, touch it, live with it - that translates to inspiration for me.  I want the tactile experience of the book, I want to feel the weight of it in my hands.  Creative expression, in any form for me, is a consistent source of renewal.

Inspiration is the life-blood of who I am.  From nature to travel to artistic expression, I have found my "muse" in many different forms all over the world.  Whether I am designing a new piece for a spa or helping breathe life into a client's dream, I am thankful for the many ways my muse encourages me every day.