By Zach Sparks
What’s your special hideaway spot for relaxing: a man cave in the basement? The local coffee shop or diner?
For 15 years, many patrons have found their relaxation at Emidio Vincenzo ESCAPE Salon and Day Spa.
Specializing in hair, skin care, manicures and pedicures, waxing, massage therapy and more, the Severna Park business was the lifelong dream of Emidio Tripodi, who owns the salon and spa with his wife, Kristen.
Tripodi credited his grandfather for introducing him to the salon industry and for showing him the importance of guest service.
“My grandfather was an old-school Italian barber in Annapolis,” Tripodi said. “He was a perfectionist in his craft for sure and [cherished] his interaction with people.”
When starting Emidio Vincenzo Salon & Spa, Tripodi wanted to emulate his grandfather’s devotion to the customer.
“You can’t help but to establish relationships, getting to know the clients and being there for their families and them being there for us,” he said.
Emidio Vincenzo ESCAPE Salon and Day Spa started with eight people, including Monica Ross, a hairstylist who has been a staple at the company for all 15 years. Her sister, Maria Sapienza, a nail specialist, will celebrate her 14th year in February. Currently, the spa has about 16 employees, but that number fluctuates.
“Part of what drives Kristen and I is watching their growth,” Tripodi said of his employees. “You start out trying to establish a business and you watch them become established.”
The staff size is not the only noticeable change. About a year after opening their business, the husband-and-wife duo added healing therapy, angel card reading and meditation to their list of services.
“Energy work is something Kristen and I have always been into,” Tripodi said. “When we first opened the business, we weren’t sure how people would react to it. But we always pride ourselves on being unique. As opposed to not putting ourselves out there, we decided to embrace it.
“One of the worst things that can happen in business is when you forget who you are, when you don’t stay true to who you are and make decisions out of fear,” he added.
Those additions have made the interaction with guests even stronger, he explained.
“We’re still a salon-and-day-spa business,” Tripodi said. “Our philosophy and energy is what makes us who we are and draws people.”
The staff thanked its longtime supporters on December 15 with a party that included giveaways. “I don’t know if amazing is a good enough word to describe how supportive they’ve been,” Tripodi said of his clients.
Gratitude and appreciation were the two main words Tripodi used when asked about his staff, his customers, and the longtime success of the salon and spa.
“Kristen and I have incredible gratitude for our team, for our clients,” he said. “I don’t think we can ever tell what the future holds for us. We will do what we’ve been doing, but figure out how to do it stronger, how to do it better.”