By Lindsay Keener
From a struggling startup to a booming business, Pedicure and Shoes 2 Go has made its mark as one of Detroit’s businesses on the rise and it has the square footage to prove it.
The brainchild of owner Ayanna Williams-Jones, Pedicure and Shoes 2 Go (PS2G) is a celebrity day spa and shopping experience that caters to the local community with nail services and fan-favorite massages.
While the store debuted in August of 2015, Williams-Jones says the downtown-based oasis was a long time coming.
“[The idea for the business] started in 2011. I was actually working full-time at General Motors and I started the business on the side, doing shoes and wine parties around the city and setting up a website…that led to the brick and mortar,” said Williams-Jones.
The pamper parties wouldn’t be a hobby for much longer. In 2014, Williams-Jones attended a retail bootcamp at TechTown where she pitched her idea for PS2G in front of Ray Waters, President of the Detroit Development Fund. Williams-Jones said the impressive pitch landed her a meeting with Nicole Farmer from Lifeline Consulting and a business plan that resulted in a monetary loan.
Despite the years of time and effort spent, the business owner says some obstacles came by surprise.
“Starting out, there was a huge worry of, ‘Now we have to get customers in here. How are we going to get customers in here?’” said Williams-Jones. “Customers couldn’t park on the street because of construction and every other day they’re gouging on the prices people have to pay to park in the parking garage.”
The lapse in customers didn’t last long. In fact, PS2G’s clientele has grown so much in the last five years that “they now have an over weeklong waiting list in order to even confirm an appointment with clients,” according to a press release.
PS2G is moving to a larger 3,000-square-foot location at 9217 E Jefferson Avenue in order to fit the needs of its customers.
The new space results in an expanded massage therapy business in addition to allowing them to diversify and offer clients new spa treatments like body scrubs, facials and more that weren’t possible in their original location, according to the release. In addition to offering spa treatments, PS2G will resume selling shoes in the near future.
Innovative ideas, alongside quality services, are critical to PS2G’s success.
“A lot of the things the state was requiring businesses to do per COVID-19, we were already doing pre COVID-19,” said Williams-Jones. “After each client, our liners are thrown away; we sanitize after every client; our vegan, gluten and paraben-free pedicure boxes have the whole works – sugar scrub, soap, massage lotion, mud mask. You don’t have to worry about cross contamination.” Williams-Jones also said PS2G is maintaining CDC guidelines by limiting the number of clients inside the salon at one time, providing sanitization stations, and spacing customers out once they are inside.
Williams-Jones says her Black-owned business is designed to provide customers with an experience unlike any other.
“Our customers are the reason that we’re here and because they’re the reason that we’re here, our goal is to service them,” said Williams-Jones. “Our hope is that whoever walks through the door – celebrity, local, entrepreneur, student – knows what good customer service is and they know the value that they bring.”
Williams-Jones has taken her business to new heights with the addition of her new partner and investor Timothy Lewis, owner of Twin Resorts.