Yesterday I had the most excellent and pleasurable of conversations with Rich and Mary Saltzman, owners of Sola Salon Studios serving the the Tampa Bay New Tampa and Wesley Chapel neighborhoods. There's much I'd like to tell you (and much more for me to learn), about the unique business concept that Rich and Mary deploy, their business philosophy, their story and the salon owners who are open to sharing their individual stories as they relate to business and perhaps most of all, their ability and freedom to express who they are through their work.
My interest in Rich, Mary and the salon owners relates to the freedom that is now part of their lives. This is what my future writing will focus on, not the promotion of their individual businesses per se. Before I move on from the thought of promoting the salon owner's however, I'd like you to think about one thing.
Would I want a stylist working on me who works in a shop laden with the pressures of drama, competition, inattentive / unreasonable owners, overall shop helter-skelter and messiness? Or would I want a stylist working on me who is free to express his or her artistic license?
There is a chance I put the cart ahead of the horse here. Rich and Mary are on board with my project. As are two of the salon owners. But as yet, I have not approached the others (I'm working on it. To be real, I was just so excited about what I witnessed yesterday that I had no choice but to write today). With this in mind, I'd like to tell you something about Rich and Mary.
Rich and Mary understand that the more positive stuff written about both their operation and those of the salon owners, the better it is for their business. They could easily pass out a memo encouraging salon owners to talk with me. But they will not. It's important to them that the salon owners have the autonomy to do their own thing. Perhaps the salon owner might be insanely busy or have other things going on in their life or maybe they just don't feel like participating; no worries, Rich and Mary are totally cool with it. This speaks volumes about these two engaging entrepreneurs.
More to come. Stay tuned. By the way, Rich and Mary have owned a Sola Salon Studios, which is located on N. Dale Mabry in Carrollwood, since 2009.
Rosemary and I ate at Full Circle Pizza & Grill last night. We both agree, it's the best pizza we've had in our eight years in New Tampa. I also had honey barbecue wings and she had a wedge salad...both were spectacular.
I am neither a foodie or a food critic. It either tastes good or it doesn't. Rosemary, on the other hand, is. A combination of her own Iron Chef background, her Italian heritage and upbringing, and an over-the-top obsession with TV shows like Restaurant Impossible and Chopped, more than qualify her. She gives Full Circle a five-star on the food, service, atmosphere and restaurant design. As a matter of fact, she wondered out loud if Robert Irvine from Restaurant Impossible might have done a makeover here. She knows that he did not, but she mentioned that Full Circle meets every single one of Irvine's criteria. (Well, there's one that she's not sure about right now. I intend on getting intel on that and a few other things and will update this article).
From the time we walked in the front door and were greeted by three friendly people, almost in perfect harmony, until we left, this was one of the most pleasurable experiences we've had in a New Tampa restaurant!
Is this what we bargained for Tampa & Hillsborough County?
You know, I can't argue with the county and state for trying to bring in jobs. Strike that. Of course I can, there's no other company on this planet that I personally do more business with than Amazon - all state tax free. That will soon be coming to an end as Amazon is planning a fulfillment center right here in Hillsborough County.
This piece by John Brownless is perplexing and sad. I LOVE the Amazon company I deal with online! Effective, thoughtful and accommodating customer service. Ben Roberts' photographs however, reveal one of the most cold, sterile and harsh working environments that could at the same time win an aesthetic and design award, in a developed economy.
To the Tampa Bay media, I suggest from here on, you offer NO coverage of Amazon coming to our community. We want to so badly be another Silicone Valley or Research Triangle. We'll never get there if we're known for the cleanest and most efficient voluntary prison in Florida.