Behind Karen Medford’s award-winning Sirius day spas
SRQ Review | September 2022
In Health and wellness
Owner Karen Medford of Sirius Day Spa. Photograph by Wes Roberts.
Entrepreneur Karen Medford has owned Sirius Day Spa since 2018 – with locations at Lakewood Ranch and UTC – and her desire for innovation continues to grow. She built her two spas from scratch and hired and managed a team of 40 people. Prior to his current company, Medford worked for the Laboratory Corporation of America/Integrative Genetics for nearly a decade, managing revenues of over $41 million and generating nearly $1 million in new revenue as a specialist. women’s health clinic.
How did you get started in the spa business? I have always frequented the local spas on my business trips in order to “prepare” myself for my meetings. It was all great until I had a family, and then being on the road wasn’t as much fun. During my travels, I heard an advertisement on the radio for a brand new concept: a spa for all your needs. It was on Sirius XM for a company called Sirius Day Spa. What are the chances?! My husband and I signed for three franchises. Then we realized there weren’t many advantages to a franchise if you were among the first. The brand recognition just wasn’t there, and I was spending a ton of money on ads and networking every chance I got. After seven months, and just opening the second location at UTC, we discovered that the parent company was going in another direction and changing its name. A year of developing a brand that I was really proud of was about to be changed. It was time to separate and become an independent brand. After a few months, the dream came true. Sirius Day Spa was independent and the name was ours.
How do you approach your business in an original way? We trust the recommendations of our team, analyze and finally decide to bring new devices, skin care lines or equipment. For example, according to the advice of our main beautician, we brought machines with the works: micro-current, LED light therapy, ultrasound treatments, etc. Each year, our goal has been to continue to innovate and grow. This led to the addition of the medspa team after two years, as well as the latest advancements such as IPL machines, Diamond Glow, Morpheus8 RF microneedling, body contouring and laser hair removal.
How did you decide to become an entrepreneur? Family, family, family. My husband has always been an entrepreneur and I respect him for his hard work while always making time for the kids. He was truly an inspiration to me and gave me the courage to take the leap into the corporate world. He continues to grow his businesses and is always there to support me. It was the best decision I’ve ever made, and even though I feel like I’m working harder than ever, that’s really what I love. My dream is for my daughters to see that hard work pays off and I hope to have a legacy to leave them.
How to manage a successful work/life balance? We have an annual sponsorship with the Sarasota Polo Club so from December through May our family packs up every Sunday and heads to Green Beach. Even though it’s practically across the street, we pack a day’s worth of picnic food, bubbles, juice boxes and our porch furniture to set up our placeholder.
How do you keep your energy and focus? Really, I don’t know what I would do without yoga, whether it’s hot yoga or Vinyasa; this is truly my saving grace. Not only does it keep me physically fit and reduce anxiety, but I feel like my best ideas came out of a yoga class. It brings clarity to my mind by helping me see something that was previously ‘obscured’.