Phenix Salon Suites has nailed down five Houston area locations as the Encinitas, Calif.-based franchise continues its expansion across the U.S.

CBRE arranged leases in west Houston, Katy, Midtown, Bellaire and the Heights on behalf of multiple franchisees for the high-end salon suites business.


The deals include a 7,000-square-foot lease at Westheimer Towne Center, at 8555 Westheimer near Fondren, and a 6,600-square-foot lease at Price Plaza, at 20290 Katy Freeway, in a former Aaron Brothers location in Katy. Inside Loop 610, Phenix Salon Suites franchisees signed a 7,267-square-foot lease for the entire second floor at 2101 Smith, a 6,500-square-foot location on the second floor in the redeveloped Bellaire Town Center at Bellaire and South Rice and a 6,713-square-foot location at 2401 North Shepherd development in the Heights.


Finding the right locations has been a challenge in a market where Houston’s best retail spaces average 98 percent occupancy, according to CBRE.

CBRE brokers Sydney Dixon and Brian Ashby have been working on the expansion for more than a year. Phenix Salon Suites already has locations in River Oaks Shopping Center and Champion Forest Shopping Center.

To make the deals work, CBRE negotiated with landlords for tenant improvement allowances and targeted the more affordable second floor spaces on the Inner Loop locations, Dixon said. Terms of the leases were not disclosed, but well-located second floor spaces typically range from $25 to $35 per square foot per year, not including expenses.

The goal is to be in the best locations, but not necessarily the most accessible spots within those retail centers.

“You know where your hairdresser is,” said Dixon, a senior associate with CBRE. “As long as you can find it once, you know where you’re going.”

Phenix Salon Suites offers spaces to hair stylists, lash specialists, manicurists, massage therapists and dermatologists. The suites, which are individually climate controlled, start at about 900 square feet. Franchisees set the rental rates based on location and other market factors.

The concept enables stylists to avoid locking into a long-term lease, and keep their fees rather than sharing with a salon owner elsewhere. It has grown in popularity over the past decade, with operators such as Sola Salons, Blue Lion Salon Studios, Salons by JC, Alex Burton Studios, Image Salon Studios and Salon Lofts setting up shop in the Houston market.


“Landlords are quickly realizing that salon suites are great traffic drivers to their centers, often drawing 4,000 to 5,000 female shoppers into the shopping center every single month,” Dixon said.

Phenix Salon Suites, opened by Jason and Gina Rivera in 2007, has 283 locations in 34 states. Dixon estimates the Houston market could grow to 30 locations in the next decade.


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