Newry day spa owner invests £500,000 into new premises and job creation

Zen Day Spa owner Lisa McCrink (right) with manager Catherine McCann (left) and Katey McTavish from AES Solutions. Photo: Kelvin Boyes/PressEye

A FORMER banker and owner of a Newry day spa, who started her business in a rented room just three years ago, has expanded into 3,500 sq ft premises at River Street in the city which is now employing 11 staff.

Lisa McCrink, who trained in health, beauty and wellness treatments alongside a 15-year career in the corporate sector, has invested £500,000 in the award-winning Zen Day Spa.

The new 10 treatment room spa - which also houses a yoga studio, skin clinic, relaxation areas and events suite - has also been chose by Cardiff-based aesthetics company Advanced Esthetics Solutions to be the first clinic in Northern Ireland to offer its unique Divine Pro facial rejuvenation technology.

The technology offers a pyramid facelift among its treatments, is considered by experts as an effective alternative to injectables such as botox without the need to use invasive surgery, and is used by celebrities including Denise Van Outen.

Ms McCrink said: “It's an exciting time for Zen as we embark on a new era, after buying new premises adjacent to where we have operated from since 2016 and carrying out a building project which has trebled our size and dramatically increased capacity for clients.

“Health and wellness is a fast-moving industry and we work hard to keep up with customer demand for results-driven new treatments.

“We want to be a leader in spa industry, so it's fantastic to be chosen to be the first salon in Northern Ireland to offer the advanced new Divine Pro treatment.”

Total spending in the healthcare, wellness and fitness industry in the UK is projected to reach £209 next year, and Zen has a target of increasing revenue by 350 per cent in the next five years.

Ms McCrink says her ambitious growth plans have been met with challenges around lending, but she has been supported by the NI Small Business Fund to purchase new equipment and products.

“There is a lack of financial support for fast-growth start-ups, and there is also some stigma around the beauty industry.

“But before we expanded we were having to tell people we were booked up for months ahead, so there was clearly the opportunity for growth.”

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