Erica Arias knew that she wanted to invest in something, but finding the right investment had proven to be a challenge.
That was until a trip to Los Angeles with her sister-in-law, Blanca Giacoman, who is also her business partner, provided inspiration for something familiar, but with a differentiating flair.
“My sister-in-law said ‘hey let’s go to this nail spa,’’ Arias said. “So we went and I told her that I wanted to invest into something, and I said why don’t we do something like this.”
At that moment the idea for Liv Lav Nail Bar (think Live Lavishly) was born. It took nearly to plan and design the concept around their California Avenue store, but the nail spa is now open as a new part of the sprawling Mercado Latino complex in east Bakersfield.
Giacoman handles the cosmetology part of the business, while Arias works on the marketing and customer experience.
“We wanted to be different, we wanted to have a royalty experience,” Arias said.
Forget the traditional ideas about a nail salon with this place, because you will high-back chairs, porcelain tubs for pedicures, a nail bar, hip lighting and music that infuse energy into the business that makes for a unique experience, and that’s exactly what Arias and Giacoman wanted.
“The idea is to give more of a lavish experience at an affordable price,” Arias said.
An example of that pricing is aimed at men, who may not be the traditional nail spa client, but who offer a key opportunity for the business. For $50 a man would receive a hand and foot detail that features epsom salt soak, file and shaping of the nails, cuticle softening lotion, cuticle trim, moisturizers, golf ball foot and calf massage, hot towel wrap, paraffin dip, cuticle oil and on and on it goes.
For anyone walking into the business for the first time it’s the high-back chairs, which reach 7-feet tall, that makes for a striking visual. Customers are also treated to mimosas as part of the treatment, but Arias says its the entire experience that sets the business apart.
On a Thursday afternoon Maria Soto stopped by for a pedicure and was impressed with her first experience.
“I mean it was beautiful,’’ said Soto, who came on the recommendation of her mother. “I thought let me give them a try and here I am.”
That’s exactly the sort of feedback that Arias was looking for.
For more information about Liv Lav Nail Bar visit their website: https://livlavnailbar.com