Meet Billy Smith, spa director at The Spa at Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort (Pigeon Forge, TN).
How many years have you been involved in the spa and hospitality industry?
I have been involved for 36 years.
What was the path that led you into the spa industry?
I am a third generation beauty industry person. My grandfather and father were both in the industry, so it was a natural path to take.
What are the most challenging and rewarding parts of working in the spa industry?
Challenges are hopeful possibilities to me. The rewards are always having happy guests when their services are completed and a staff that reaches goals and sees their dreams come true.
What has surprised you most about working in the spa industry?
I’m most surprised by the servant hearts of people who work in the spa industry.
What qualities do you look for in your spa staff?
People who love people and care about the guest experience.
Where do you think the industry is heading?
Always up. In a troubled world, spas are one of the few places that people can go and release the stress of life, relax, let go, and re-energize to face it all again.
What is the strangest client request you’ve fielded?
I’ve been asked to provide services for someone who couldn’t be touched.
What is the most bizarre treatment you’ve experienced?
It would be a Japanese red wine spa bath.
What new spa treatment would you like to try?
Anything and everything!
What’s your go-to spa treatment?
For me, it is always a massage. I have been a runner and biker for years, and my body needs it.
What’s your favorite skincare ingredient?
SGF-4 lifts and tightens delicate skin. It’s in the Skin Authority products that we carry.
Which brands are your go-to favorites?
Great skin starts with great products; Skin Authority really serves me well.
Tell us two things about yourself we don’t know.
I won a state haircutting competition in hair school over 45 other stylists, and I served as a city councilman for one term.
What positions have you worked in that you feel have been most influential to your career?
I worked with Salon Centric and L’Oreal teaching salon management and leadership workshops across the country. I learned so much from other beauty leaders that attended our classes.
If you could work in any other profession in the world, what would it be?
Design. I love structure and how things work from haircut design to clothes—even architecture.
How would you sum up your personal philosophy?
Live each day with more joy than the previous day, and in all things, be thankful.
What’s the best advice you’ve received?
There is a solution for every problem—find it.