Joycie Lewis has been in the spa and hospitality industry for 38 years. During her career in this industry, she has been a spa business owner, and has worked for several luxury brands, such as St. Regis Hotels & Resorts. Lewis was recently appointed the spa director at The Opus Spa at The Opus Westchester (NY), where she oversees the day-to-day operations of the luxury wellness experience, including spa programming development and ideation, staff supervision, inventory management, and upholding and overseeing operations and service protocols. Learn more about Lewis, her path to where she is today, and her thoughts on the future of spa and wellness.
WHAT WAS THE PATH THAT LED YOU INTO THE SPA INDUSTRY?
While working as an in-flight supervisor for Air One, a St. Louis-based airline, I had the opportunity to explore spas around the world and even attended numerous spa seminars in Scottsdale, AZ. Delivering a quality service and ensuring a memorable experience have always been a passion of mine. When Air One closed, I saw an opportunity in Ladue, MO, to pursue my passion.
WHAT ARE THE MOST CHALLENGING AND REWARDING PARTS OF BEING IN THE SPA INDUSTRY?
The most rewarding aspect of the spa industry is seeing guests leave totally relaxed and knowing that you and your team created an oasis where guests cannot help but release the stress and be in the moment. The most challenging is the reality that everyone has a bad day, but still ensuring that our frontline releases the stress before engaging with clients because there is power in touch.
WHAT HAS SURPRISED YOU MOST ABOUT WORKING IN THE SPA INDUSTRY?
The surprise is how peaceful I still remain 38 years later, and I attribute that to simply loving what I do. Seeing our guests arrive stressed but leave with a calmness and a balance that will be shared with others they encounter keeps my heart full. I love this industry!
WHERE DO YOU THINK THE INDUSTRY IS HEADING?
The spa industry is needed more now than ever after the COVID-19 pandemic. Through massage, facials, Zen baths, body treatments, manicures and pedicures, and sauna and steam room amenities, we can recharge, detox, relax, and reconnect with clarity and wellness of mind that allows us to bring our best selves to the forefront.
WHAT IS YOUR PROUDEST ACCOMPLISHMENT?
My soul warms with pride and joy when I think of my daughter, who I raised as a single mom. Despite our struggles, she shined as an undergraduate student at Howard University’s School of Engineering, graduating summa cum laude, and then received a full scholarship to NYU’s Stern School of Business where she got her master’s degree. Seeing her now as an amazing mom to my precious 14-year-old grandson is priceless.
WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE SKINCARE INGREDIENT?
One of the best anti-aging ingredients is hyaluronic acid for hydration and suppleness. My favorite products overall are Yon-Ka Paris, Biologique Recherche, and Hydrafacial. They all deliver outstanding results.
WAS THERE A TIME YOU HAD TO MAKE A DECISION IN YOUR CAREER THAT ENDED UP CHANGING YOUR DESTINY?
The decision to work for Air One was a tough one. I had to relocate for training, which also required that I leave my daughter with family for a few months. As hard as this was, Air One led me to the spa industry.
IF YOU COULD WORK IN ANY OTHER PROFESSION IN THE WORLD, WHAT WOULD IT BE?
I’m not sure I’d want to work in any other profession, but if I had to choose, I’d say interior design that helps clients globally. I love bringing life into a space and creating an oasis wherever I am.
WHAT POSITIONS HAVE YOU WORKED IN THAT YOU FEEL HAVE BEEN MOST INFLUENTIAL TO YOUR CAREER?
The positions most influential to my career are by far owning my own spa for more than two decades and working as a director within the industry. I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to see the spa industry from all sides, and this has definitely shaped how I navigate the space today.
HOW WOULD YOU SUM UP YOUR PERSONAL PHILOSOPHY?
Be kind to others because you never know what someone is going through. Treat others as you would like to be treated. I live by these sentiments.
HOW DO YOU LIKE TO SPEND YOUR TIME AWAY FROM WORK?
My favorite pastime is time with my daughter and grandson. I also enjoy walks on the beach and looking out at the most beautiful sunsets.
WHAT ARE YOUR THREE GREATEST PRIORITIES IN LIFE?
Family, health, and peace.
WHAT’S THE BEST ADVICE YOU’VE RECEIVED?
Praise God every day and start each day with a grateful heart.