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Aveda Opens Dallas Unit

An Aveda Institute has opened in Dallas featuring green construction, a full-service hair salon and spa and a retail store.

An Aveda Institute has opened in Dallas featuring green construction, a full-service hair salon and spa and a retail store selling the brand’s botanical treatment products.

Built at a cost of more than $5 million, the 33,000-square-foot center is located at Park Lane, a new mixed-use development across from NorthPark Center.

“It is one of our largest locations,” said Jeanine O’Neill-Blackwell, chief learning officer of Beauty Basics Inc., which owns and operates 10 Aveda Institutes in six southern states. The company’s next Aveda Institute is expected to open next year in Austin at a new development called University Park.

Beauty Basics is affiliated with Neill Corp., a distributor that handles Aveda products in seven states and Mexico. Beauty Basics is based in Covington, La., and Neill is in nearby Hammond, La.

Aveda owns its freestanding retail stores, but leaves most of its salons and all 48 training centers to licensees such as Beauty Basics.

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The Aveda Institute has capacity for 200 students who train for a year in cosmetology, esthiology and massage for tuition of $15,000 to $18,000, O’Neill-Blackwell said.

She added that so far, services and retail sales at the institute, which was opened in September, are running 25 percent ahead of projections and that student enrollment is 20 percent above budget.

Industry sources estimate the location could generate first-year sales of $3 million.

Its environmentally friendly design includes natural and LED lighting; a ventilation system that recovers thermal energy; paper recycling, and the use of sustainable cleaning products.

The institute operates like a regular salon except students perform services at reduced rates ranging from $6 for a lip wax to $80 for a two-hour massage. A haircut is $15.

Colored in soothing earth tones, the spa features upscale fixtures including a Vichy shower and 15 treatment rooms, and each guest receives a robe, a wrap, rubber slippers and a locker.

“The spa is like a high-end spa,” O’Neill-Blackwell asserted.

A critical factor in choosing a site for a training center is an abundance of salons to employ graduates, she said.

“Dallas has an incredible salon community made up of very progressive business owners,” she observed. “And we look for co-tenants speaking to the same consumer audience — that conscientious consumer who wants an indulging experience…at a nonindulgent price.”

Park Lane also houses Nordstrom Rack and Dick’s Sporting Goods, and next door is the Art Institute of Dallas, which has 2,000 students enrolled in fashion design and other programs.