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“I grew up in San Antonio. My wife is from Greensboro, NC, ”he said. “We took both states into account when deciding to start a business. “

Texas won, especially Waco. The local market was available for the franchise and the Balmos loved what Waco had to offer. They have sons aged 18, 15 and 7. So schools and family-oriented activities were important.

“San Antonio is getting a little too big now,” said Heath Balmos.

Their search for a site ended at the Central Texas Marketplace, the sprawling Bagby Avenue mall, West Loop 340 and Interstate 35. They signed a lease on 2,870 square feet near La Madeleine French Bakery and Cafe.

“I think being near La Madeleine is an advantage,” said Heath Balmos. “Their demographics are very similar to the majority of our customers. “

Heather Balmos said she had been an administrative assistant for three years at Fort Campbell. With the help of the military with tuition, she attended the Everest Institute in Tigard, Ore., Where she was trained to be a massage therapist. She worked at a Hand & Stone facility in Washington state, where she met the founders of the company at a spa’s first anniversary celebration. There she decided to have her own place.

“I had taken business courses, which I liked a lot, but I didn’t want any of those jobs,” she said. “When I graduated my 12 year old told me I had to follow my passion. I didn’t really think I had a passion. We had a spa room in our house. I had a massage whenever I had the chance, and I gave massages to my family. I went to GI Bill massage school, and it absolutely became my passion.

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