What do you get when you combine the powers of a financial planner and an interior designer? A really cute, well-run nail salon in Denver, Colo., that stands out from traditional strip mall salons but can still compete on price.
Since I was on vacation, I thought we’d make a fun event out of my salon visit. That’s me, Manda Minehan, and Evan Fauerbach getting pedis and (inset) Nicole London with little Lilly Fauerbach getting manicures. It was a fun ladies’ excursion!
A Door to the Future Opened four years ago by Diane Bilello and her partner Anna Hughes, Sweet Life Nail Bar is located in Stapleton, a fast-growing neighborhood outside of Denver. The shabby chic interior was the work of Hughes, an interior designer. My favorite part? The antique, pastel-hued doors — all salvaged from an old hotel — that make up the focal point on the walls. Two large beautiful chandeliers (salvaged from an old mansion) hang from the exposed high ceilings.
Natural Nails in a Serene Setting
Nail tech Jessica Nguyen (right) has been licensed for three years, and she's been an employee at Sweet Life for the last two.
Clients sit in overstuffed chairs with warm light from a series of floor lamps, lending the space a very homey feel. Six pedicure stations line the main wall, with six manicure tables opposite. Down the center, couches and chairs are available for lounging between services and chatting with friends. The salon offers natural manis and pedis, as well as gel-polish. Nail tech Jessica Nguyen guesses around 70% of the clients she sees opt for gel-polish on their hands. The salon also has a private room for facials, waxing, and lash services.
Cocktails and Camaraderie
With such a comfortable, lounge-like atmosphere, the 2,000-sq.-ft. salon naturally caters to parties of all groups and sizes. And you can actually purchase alcohol off a menu. The salon has a liquor license that allows them to sell alcohol. The team at Sweet Life (which has on average eight nail techs, an esthetician, a nail tech assistant, a receptionist, and an assitant manager) has a nice camradarie. (Pictured from left are: Jessica Nguyen, Veronica Van de Sande, Anna Hughes, Diane Bilello, Catherine Nesbitt, Kayla McDermott, and Aliyah Palumbo.)
> In addition to designing the salon interior, Anna Hughes also makes a line of handmade jewelry for sale in the boutique area of the salon.
> Sweet Life was the first salon in Colorado to obtain a liquor license. Offering a limited drink menu was part of owner Diane Bilello’s initial salon concept.
> The salon offers the Essential Mini Mani/Pedi for children ages 6-10, and it includes a trim and polish. It also offers an Essential Sport Pedicure for men.
Mini Mani/Pedi: $20
Essential Sport Pedicure: $35
Polish: OPI and Zoya