New business offers relaxing retreat for kids

The Glowing Tree Kids Spa of Hillsborough County

The Glowing Tree Kids Spa of Hillsborough CountyLife is hard. Everyone needs a place to escape and relax – even kids. When Thaimi Deya first developed the idea of The Glowing Tree Kids Spa, she wanted to create a haven for kids that combines fun with wellness.

“I have an eight-year-old daughter and she’s my inspiration for everything I do,” Deya said. “I wanted to create a place where she would feel safe and comfortable and she could express herself. But also, I care about kids’ wellness. For example, my mirrors are equipped with the screen behind them and they project positive quotes. I want to promote self-love, for those girls that come and visit that maybe they need that reinforcement that need to build a better self-esteem.”

Today, the spa is an enchanted forest-themed escape that even includes a live-in fairy.

“As soon as the kids come in, they’re just kind of taken back by all the lights and how pretty it is,” said live-in fairy Tyla “Glow” Otero. “They just absolutely love it. They get dressed in cozy little silk robes and they get their nails painted and receive facials. They just really have a great time and then they leave feeling like a princess.”

The Glowing Tree is more than a spa. In addition to all of the usual spa amenities such as mani-pedis, facials and massages, they also provide yoga classes and offer party and event packages.

Just a year ago, this was all just an idea in Deya’s head. After receiving a recommendation from a friend, she turned to the Florida SBDC at University of South Florida to turn it into a reality. There she met certified business consultant, Pablo Arroyo.

“I reached out to the SBDC at USF because I needed to get all the help I could,” Deya said. “It was just an idea. When I went in and described my concept and told Pablo what I wanted to do, he immediately helped me and answered all of my questions. He directed me to the right places to get information, educational material, and advised me to attend the relevant seminars. I cannot be more grateful for Pablo and his help.”

Arroyo helped her find her location based on research he conducted for the ideal demographics.

“Of course, Tampa Palms was an ideal location,” she said. “I am surrounded by many communities with families and with kids of the age that we are targeting.”

He also assisted her with a variety of other tools and resources, such as building a business plan, encouraging her to expand her original concept to include a space to host parties and events. He also gave her guidance on marketing efforts.

The Glowing Tree has only been open for five months, but Deya says she will continue to seek out Arroyo and the Florida SBDC at USF to ensure continued growth and success.

“Pablo is a great resource,” she said. “He really helped me define what I wanted to do and it definitely helped me.”