Category: Featured

Start-Up Story: By Design

Cassy Harrelson

If you work in or around Simmons Tower, chances are good you’ve seen the small salon, By Design, in the southeast corner of the lobby. Cassy Harrelson has owned and operated the salon since 2009, but she’s been a part of the business for much longer than that. In 1995 she became a part-owner but sold her half of the business when she moved to California in 2000. Lucky for us, she moved back to Arkansas in 2009, bought the business outright, and has been running the popular downtown salon ever since.

Cassy is a certified nail technician with decades of experience, but when she began her journey, she might not have predicted just where she would end up. Her whole career started when she decided that she wanted to try to learn how to do her own nails. She really liked this new hobby and seemed to have a knack for it, so she began doing manicures for friends and family out of her own home. When she realized that she could actually go to nail school and get officially licensed, it just seemed like the most natural choice. So that’s just what she did, but she didn’t start working in a salon right away. Cassy was a stay at home mom for many years and was able to run her nail business out of her home. She had never even worked in a salon until she started at By Design in 1995 and just look at her now!

Cassy loves working downtown. The heavy foot traffic around the building keeps things interesting and helps her stay connected with her customers. Plus, most stylists have to work on Saturdays, but not Cassy. Because the building closes on the weekends, she doesn’t have to keep regular salon hours and she’s grateful for the freedom that brings.

By Design is open Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., though they are flexible to accommodate customers. Services provided include haircuts and coloring, extensions, styling, waxing, and of course, manicures and pedicures! Walk-ins are almost always welcome, but appointments are encouraged. So next time you need to spruce up a bit for that business meeting or dinner right after work, Cassy and her team at By Design have you covered.

Start-Up Story: Taylor & Taylor Law Firm

Tasha and Andy Taylor

This start-up story features Tasha and Andy Taylor, who’ve teamed up in life, love, and law to form one of Little Rock’s most unique and dynamic power couples.

Husband and wife attorney team Tasha and Andy Taylor met at the UA Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law, where they both graduated in 2005. Five years into their careers, the couple founded Taylor & Taylor Law Firm, P.A. in 2010.  Since the beginning, the Taylors have focused on taking excellent care of their clients. Their motto, “we love helping people” is not just something they say, but it’s how the Taylors and their team approach every person they talk to at their firm.

The Taylors now manage a statewide personal injury practice and appellate practice. Their firm also handles family law matters, education law, and social security disability claims. Taylor & Taylor Law Firm is located in West Little Rock at the Centre at 10 building on Highway 10. They can be found online at www.TaylorLawFirm.com.

Start-Up Story: AvaBella Day Spa

DeeDee Helbig, owner of AvaBella Day Spa

Flake & Kelley Commercial is proud to introduce a new series called, Start-Up Stories. We meet a lot of great people in our business and we want to share the entrepreneurial stories of people who love what they do. DeeDee Helbig leased space in Westchase Plaza fifteen years ago to open AvaBella Day Spa. AvaBella has grown to include a wide range of award-winning services and now employs 16 people. Thank you, DeeDee for sharing your inspiring story!

Growing up, I always dreamed of owning my own business. My dad owned a construction company and my aunt owned her own salon. So, I suppose you could say the entrepreneurial spirit is in my blood.

I received my esthetician (skincare therapist) license in 2000 and worked at a couple of day spas before I decided I was ready to open my own. I’m slightly hard-headed and like to do things my own way. So, I thought I should give it a shot, and I took the plunge in 2004. The moment I walked into the location in Westchase Plaza, I fell in love! I knew this was the right place for my day spa.

I started with just three employees, but the business took off so well that we expanded in 2010, despite the recession that was going on at the time. This was a huge honor for me because I know my business survives on customers having disposable income, which is typically scarce during economic recessions

A lot has changed over the years since I began working in this industry. When I first opened, the internet was in its infancy, iPhones and apps hadn’t launched yet, plastic credit card gift cards weren’t common, and online shopping was almost completely unheard of. Ava Bella was one of only three day spas in the central Arkansas area and now I believe there are more than 20! The industry is growing fast and getting stronger and stronger every year.

We are in our fifteenth year of business and have 16 incredible employees! I credit a lot of my success to how I treat my staff. I have always believed and tried to show by example that if my employees are happy, the clients will be happy, and when clients are happy, business is good. This simple idea has become a mantra by which I run my business and it has definitely paid off!

If I could give any advice to someone who is thinking of starting their own business I would say, first, be financially and physically prepared to work a lot of hours for very little money. I didn’t have a steady paycheck for the first two or three years! Second, never ever spend beyond your means. Most businesses go under because they can’t pay their bills. Last, and most important, treat your staff well. They are the backbone of your business. It’s kind of like a marriage, if they’re happy, you’re happy.

Cheers to 15 more years!

DeeDee Helbig, Owner

Ava Bella Day Spa

Cheers indeed, DeeDee! It’s people like you that make our state such a great place to live and do business. Flake & Kelley is honored to have played a small role in your success!

Flake & Kelley Commercial Elects New Shareholder Partners

Little Rock, AR (December 21, 2018) – Flake & Kelley Commercial is pleased to announce the election of four new shareholder partners. Nicholas Kelley, Cynthia Lu, Kevin Pledger, and Eric Varner have earned shareholder status in the company to join existing partners John Flake, Hank Kelley, Daryl Peeples, Cheryl White, Maggie Hogan, Kathy Groce, James Harkins, Bill Pendergist, and Brooke Miller. With the addition of these new shareholders, Flake & Kelley now has partners across every department, including: brokerage, property management, accounting, human resources, and maintenance.

Hank Kelley, CEO of Flake & Kelley Commercial, commented: “Our new shareholders are an important part of our future as they demonstrate a high degree of knowledge and care for our clients.”

John Flake, Chairman, joined Mr. Kelley in congratulating the new partners: “Our new shareholders represent the finest in professional services. We are delighted to recognize their many contributions to Flake & Kelley.”

Nicholas Kelley joined Flake & Kelley in 2017 and serves as Executive Vice President for the company. He is also a member of Flake & Kelley’s Executive Committee. Nicholas is a member of the company’s brokerage/leasing team, representing such clients as Arthur’s Steakhouse/Ocean’s at Arthur’s and Riverside Properties and properties including Two Financial Centre and the Blandford Building. He also provides guidance to Flake & Kelley’s team on a variety of complex legal matters.

Nicholas is a graduate of the University of Georgia (BBA, Real Estate and Finance) and the Walter F. George School of Law, Mercer University (JD). Mr. Kelley received The American Bar Association Section of Labor and Employment Law and the Bureau of National Affairs Award for excellence in the study of labor and employment law. Prior to joining Flake & Kelley, Nicholas practiced as a commercial real estate attorney with the Little Rock firm of Quattlebaum, Grooms & Tull, PLLC and most recently with a large Am Law 100 firm in Atlanta, Georgia (McGuire Woods LLP). Nicholas is recently completed the Arkansas Business Executive Leadership Academy.

Cynthia Lu joined Flake & Kelley in 2013. As a member of the company’s transactional team, Cynthia is responsible for traditional brokerage, leasing, and tenant representation. She represents national, regional, and local retailers such as AT&T, Firebirds Restaurants, Mattress Firm, PetSmart, Signet Jewelers, and Taco Bueno. Cynthia is also a leasing agent for a number of retail centers, including Westchase Plaza, Markham Square, The Village Shopping Center, and Lewis Crossing in Conway.

Cynthia is a summa cum laude graduate of Rice University (BA) and earned a master’s degree from Georgia Tech University in Building Construction & Facility Management. Cynthia was one of the first LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) accredited professionals. She is a member of ChainLinks Retail Advisors and the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC). Cynthia was recognized as one of Little Rock Soiree Magazine’s “Women to Watch” in 2017. Cynthia has recently been selected to participate in the Leadership Greater Little Rock Class XXXIV.

Kevin Pledger joined Flake & Kelley in 2014 and serves as Director of Facilities. He is responsible for directing all activities for the facilities department including the repair, maintenance and construction of all Flake & Kelley managed properties.

Kevin is a member of the American Society of Healthcare Engineering (ASHE), the Arkansas Association for Healthcare Engineering (AAHE), the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and the American Society for Heating, Refrigeration, Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE). Prior to joining Flake & Kelley, Kevin served as the Operations Manager for the Arkansas Building Authority.

Eric Varner joined Flake & Kelley in 2013. As a member of the company’s property management team, Eric oversees the management of some of Central Arkansas’ premier office buildings, medical buildings, and retail centers, including Two Financial Centre, The Village at Pleasant Valley, Westchase Plaza, and Shackleford Crossings.

Eric is a graduate of Ouachita Baptist University (BA – Business Administration). Eric was recently awarded the designation of Certified Property Manager® – CPMs are recognized as experts in real estate management and they are at the top of the profession. Eric is also active in Park Hill Baptist Church, Urban Promise, and FORE Ouachita.

For further information, please contact:

Paula Guajardo, Director of Marketing

Flake & Kelley Commercial

501.244.7540 (direct)

501.960.3693 (mobile)

pguajardo@flakeandkelley.com

New Dairy Queen Coming to Hurricane Creek Village in Benton

Flake & Kelley Commercial is proud to announce the closing of a 1-acre purchase by You Scream Properties Benton, LLC, who intends to construct a new freestanding Dairy Queen restaurant with drive-thru at Hurricane Creek Village Shopping Center in Benton. This location will be the fourth Dairy Queen location planned by the buyer / franchisee.

“We appreciate the opportunity to have represented the seller and developer of the Hurricane Creek Village shopping center, Dallas-based Connected Development Services, for this future Dairy Queen location in Benton,” stated Hank Kelley, CEO of Flake & Kelley Commercial.  “This sale represents another step in the process of Hurricane Creek Village being the go-to destination for daily needs shopping and dining in the City of Benton.”

Benton’s Mayor, David Mattingly, is also pleased that Dairy Queen is coming to Hurricane Creek Village, stating: “We have always been big fans of the Dairy Queen!  Great burgers, chocolate shakes, French fries, and a place to see your friends.  It was always a special treat to enjoy a Dilly Bar.  Welcome home Dairy Queen, we’ve missed you!”

Hurricane Creek Village was developed by Connected Development Services, a division of The Retail Connection. The retail center is anchored by a very successful Kroger Marketplace and Academy Sports. Other businesses in the immediate area include Tacos 4 Life, Slim Chickens, T-Mobile, Pie Five Pizza, Poke Café, Super Cuts, City Nails, and Monarch Dental.

Hurricane Creek Village worked with the Buyer agent, Ben Lester of Orion Capital Partners, and the Seller agent, Brooke Miller of Flake & Kelley, to complete the sale. The future Dairy Queen site is located East of Alcoa Road, fronting Highway 5.

Dairy Queen has over 4,400 domestic locations and 6,800 locations worldwide. Flake & Kelley is pleased to be able to represent the Seller and help bring the Dairy Queen brand to this premier location in the heart of the most popular retail and dining district in Saline County.

https://bentoncourier.com/content/official-dairy-queen-coming-saline-county