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By Rylie Friesen-
Located between Gold’s Gym and a newly opened cafe, Venice Nail Studio features scenes of Paris architecture on the walls and Roman statues throughout.
The salon opened June 15 and offers services such as manicures, pedicures, facials, and waxing. Customers are also treated to an offering of Italian wine, juice, bottled water and snacks to fuel up as the technicians work on beautifying hands and feet.
Led by owner Houston Chau, the nail salon is inspired and designed after Venice, Italy, which the studio is named after. Chau said in an interview with The Sentinel that he took a trip to Italy with his wife four years ago, and both fell in love with “everything Italy has to offer.”
The decorations, layout, as well as food provided are all modeled after Italy.
“When people come here, it’s like a little Italy,” Chau said.
The space is about 3,000 square feet. Chau said a nail salon with this amount of space would generally place around 25 spa chairs, but he opted to put only 16 in order to keep the space more open. This, he said, creates a calmer environment for customers.
“Here, you can just close your eyes and sit back for an hour.”
Venice Nail Studio has a growing rate of around 90 customers per day, Chau said. The studio has 13 nail technicians who all take an average of 7 clients a day.
“Clients are coming over overwhelmingly,” Chau said during an interview last week. “Our schedule today is entirely booked.”
Chau said he chose Citrus Heights because he noticed Roseville and Antelope are both within two miles of Citrus Heights. Now, he said, he has 3 cities within a 5 mile radius. Clients also drive from further away, with Chau saying some have driven 45 minutes to come to the salon.
With an ambitious business plan, Chau is hoping to open another Venice Nail Studio in Natomas in around 6-8 months. He would hope to open more as well, in the Elk Grove, Folsom, and Rocklin areas.
After signing a lease for the space in February 2020, the business was intended to open that June, but construction was put on hold because of the pandemic. Chau decided to officially open the store the day the pandemic mandates were lifted by Gov. Gavin Newsom.
While Chau never had prior experience with the nail industry, he said he’s known many salon owners, including his sister and wife. He was known to tell his family and friends how they were running their business is wrong, but his comments weren’t received.
“They say: ‘You don’t know what you’re talking about, because banking and nail salons are entirely different businesses,'” he said with a laugh. “It’s true, it’s two different businesses: but it’s two servicing business.”
Chau said he opened his nail salon to challenge the idea that nail salons always have a “crazy” aspect to them, between the employees and owners. Chau said the craziness comes from bad management and bad policy.
95% of clients call in an appointment first, and it is highly recommended. This way nail technicians can be scheduled around their schedule, rather than trying to fight for a client.
Chau has previous experience as a banker, owning a mortgage business in San Jose. He said he opened his own company six years ago after working under various banking companies for 20 years.
Chau’s new business has already earned an average rating of 4.5-out-of-5 stars on Yelp, and his response time for online requests for an appointment averages just 20 minutes, according to the review site.
“People are telling me that our nail salon is different than any other nail salon they have seen before,” Chau said. “We are very proud of what we have accomplished, and we are very thankful for all the reviews from the clients.”
Venice Nail Salon is located at 8489 Auburn Blvd., in Citrus Heights. More information can be found online at venicenailstudio.com.
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