Allt believed that having different revenue streams would enable him to broaden his reach in Bayshore, and that the retail and café components would invite foot traffic. However, he still needed to educate the community on the variety of options awaiting them inside the spa. Having a business with so many components is an advantage and a challenge: business diversification is great, but staff can’t necessarily be cross-trained for all of the various disciplines. Still, clients who stopped by for a latte and a scone would inevitably then wander into the retail area, or even inquire about spa services. The fact that Drew Patrick Spa didn’t fit a recognized model didn’t faze locals, who embraced what they found.
Not that there haven’t been a few hiccups. The 1,400-square-foot, well-equipped personal training area was designed to accommodate a couple of trainers and their clients at once, and is accessible from outside. However, Allt wanted a customer service rep manning the desk during hours clients could be in the building, which created the need for staffing as early as 6:30 a.m. Then the recession hit and the demand for personal training services took a dive. After a very quiet 2009, business picked back up in 2010. Today, the spa’s personal training is contracted out to a fitness coach, whose team of six trainers enjoys a regular client base.
In retrospect, Allt sees that building personal training services required more attention and energy than he was able to give in those first years, with so many other facets of the business to tend to. Having other professionals handle it ensures that DPS clients get high-quality attention—and relieves stress for Allt.
Yoga, offered in a studio adjacent to the personal training area and locker rooms, also struggled to find its footing. The practice was not as hugely popular in 2008 as it is today, and even absorbing an existing yoga business down the street didn’t elicit immediate success. According to Allt, the turning points were: 1) being the first in the area to introduce hot yoga, and 2) adopting a monthly membership model. The steady income from memberships allowed the business to provide an instructor regardless of the class size, and the resulting consistent class schedule helped to build foot traffic.
The coffee bar/café, on the other hand, started out as a leased environment, but is now run by DPS customer service staff, who are also trained as baristas. Known for its small-batch soups, scones and multiple flavors of gelato—all homemade on the premises in the basement kitchen—the café also offers ready-made salads, wrap sandwiches and cold drinks, available for plucking from a long counter.