We had the good fortune of connecting with Damien Zouaoui & Jessica French and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Damien Zouaoui, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
As the old adage goes, with significant risks comes the potential for big rewards – and this is a saying that we reflect back on frequently while making important decisions in our lives.
We love taking risks – Risks fuel our lives on a daily basis. When you take risks, and they work out, the outcome leads to new opportunities we never imagined before. At the stage of our lives, we look at risks the following way: What’s the worst thing that would happen if we failed?
This makes us quit our comfy corporate careers in New York City to embark on a 14-month world tour searching for unique business concepts that can seem to be a considerable risk. But by taking this opportunity, we discovered and learn about unique wellness and spa concepts around the world which led to our development of The Beer Spa by Snug, a new day spa/craft beer bar concept in Denver’s Five Points neighborhood.
Deciding to go ‘all in’ on an unproven business concept was also a significant risk, both on our behalf and on behalf of our lenders. But if the idea of The Beer Spa was evident and certain, the idea of our concept wouldn’t have been that risky.
Our life motto is to never settle for mediocrity, and so far, taking risks has given us the ability to reach our goals and dreams.
The hardest part is “to jump” for it, which is what is risky. There is always a way to make risks safer.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
The Beer Spa By snug, is a modern-day wellness space that combines a day spa and craft beer taproom into one. We leverage beer ingredients to create holistic wellness experiences for both men and women.
Our facility has four Beer Therapy Rooms that can fit up to two people. Each room include an infrared sauna, a giant cedar soaking tub, and a shower packed with The Beer Spa’s cosmetics products, beer-infused shampoo, conditioner, and body wash.
What makes our soaking tubs unique is the blend of hops, barley, and whole dried herbs that create what we call a Beer Bath Hydrotherapy. Our in-house master herbalist creates the mixture in it. Hops and barley are sourced from our monthly brewery partners and act as nutrients, antioxidants, and vitamins powerhouse for your body. In June, our herbal blend included Hawthorn, which studies have shown can lower blood pressure and lessen anxiety. In July, the combination includes Tulsi that has anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties. In August, eucalyptus, which has cooling properties and a knack for relieving sore muscles, will be a part of the blend. The tub doesn’t contain any yeast. These herbal blends do wonder to your body and mind.
On the other side, the taproom offers a rotating selection of craft beer, cider, wine, and non-alcoholic beverage. Each month, a local brewery takes over our taproom to provide unique craft beers on tap.
Is it essential to mention that The Beer Spa is a gender-neutral facility. The vision behind our idea is to break the stigma that Day spas are mean to be for women. We created an inviting and welcoming environment that makes both men and women can identify themselves.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Having done this several times before for family and friends – this one is easy!
No trip to Denver is complete without brewery hopping and street art browsing in RiNo. The first night they got here, I would take them to some of our favorite RiNo spots, including the Central Market, Ratio Beerworks, Our Mutual Friend, and then finishing off with dinner at Barcelona (our favorite tapas bar).
The next day – it’s Platte Street and LoHi. We would take them to one of our favorite cocktail bars, Room for Milly, on Platte and then pop over to Denver Beer Co for a few brewskies while nomming on some empanadas from Maria’s. We would then finish with a trip to Avanti before heading to dinner at the 5th String or Wolf’s Tailor.
The next day, we would tour our neck of the woods – Five Points! We would, of course, book them a Beer Therapy Session at The Beer Spa, followed by a stroll through Curtis Park to look at the historic homes, and then ending with some charcuterie and sour beers at Goed Zuur and topping it all off with dinner at Brasserie Brixton.
One of the following days, we would add little hike and a brewery afterwards in Golden area. We love taking a walk down the Cherry Creek Trail and then stop on the stairs by the creek in front of REI for some sun bathing and chill time. Depending on the weather, we would then drive over to the Denver Botanic Gardens for a tour of the gardens and then top the night off with a show at Red Rocks.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
The Beer Spa would not have been here without the financial support of Colorado Lending Source and Denver’s office Economic Development & Opportunity. Both of those institutions took the bet on a risky and non-proven business model. Our shootout goes to all the neighbors, communities, and small businesses of The Beer Spa that agreed to sign our liquor license petition. We would also like to shout out the first breweries and beverages partners that we opened with. (iPourit Inc, Ratio Beerworks, Denver Beer Co, Infinite Monkey Theorem, Happy Leaf Kombucha, HopTea, Get Gruvi, StemCider Hop Passport, Craft Beer Babe, Flatiron Soap Works) They have been incredibly supportive and helped us to spread the word about The Beer Spa. A long shoutout to Caroline Johnson from Kohler. Kohler has been a critical partner for The Beer Spa’s business model. Finally, we would like to shout out our employees that have been loyal and dedicated to delivering a stellar customer experience to our first customers.
Full Pour Media