Chaldean-owned Beauty Lounge attracts large Jewish clientele.
Keri Guten Cohen I JN Story Development Editor
The Beauty Lounge, a full-service salon in
Orchard Mall in West Bloomfield, is like a
mini United Nations.
"So many different ethnicities work
there — Greek, Albanian, Jewish, Chaldean,
Jordanian, African American, Russian — it's
a multinational place and everyone has his
or her own specialty," said Ruth Shayne of
Farmington Hills, who has frequented the
shop weekly for the last five years.
"I like going there because the people are
extremely friendly, and it feels like family,"
Shayne said. "Well, it is family because it's
owned by two sisters"
Those sister are Lisa Yaldoo, 30, of West
Bloomfield and Olivia Shouneyia, 33, of
Bloomfield Hills. Both are married, and each
has three children.
The sisters are Chaldean and have owned
the salon for seven years this month. When
they started, they had a couple of stylists and
manicurists. Now they have a staff of 40.
Lisa has a degree in public relations; Olivia's
degree is in business. Together they are
hands-on managers who can devote their
full attention to running the business. Their
mother, Fadia Awdish of Farmington Hills,
lends a hand as well.
"Our family has been in the wholesale
beauty business forever; we went into the
retail end of it," said Lisa, who added that
the salon does have many retail products in
stock, including exclusive lines such as Oribe
and Leonor Greyl.
The sisters graduated from North
Farmington High School. They say they had
many Jewish friends growing up and did
the bar and bat mitzvah circuit. "I wanted to
know why I didn't have one Lisa joked.
"One of my best friends is Jewish," said
Olivia, who estimates that 60-70 percent of
their clientele come from the Jewish com-
munity. "There is a huge similarity in our
cultures, especially the closeness and sup-
port of families:'
Shayne says she always sees friends from
the Jewish community in the salon. "There's
a lot of sharing recipes and wishing holiday
greetings to one another. For me, the salon is
a place to leave my troubles at the door and
just relax. I know I will leave feeling good:'
Ally and Doug Cohen of Frameable
Faces are neighbors in Orchard Mall. They
are customers at the Beauty Lounge, often
bringing their two children in for haircuts
"We don't worry about sending the kids
next door; I know I will like what they do
and know they will be safe — we always
have the same warm treatment," Ally said.
"There's a vibe between the two cultures
and communities that has grown," Doug
said. "A couple of decades ago, we were
unsure, but now there's a level of comfort.
Now we are totally meshed:'
Mark Zarkin, the Jewish owner of
Steven Lelli's Inn, an Italian restaurant in
Farmington Hills, is a frequent Beauty
Lounge customer who gets his hair cut and
has manicures and pedicures.
"It's a great place, with great staff and
where great friends meet," Zarkin said. "We
Beauty Lounge owners Lisa Yaldoo and Olivia
support one another. I tell my customers
about them — and many are already going
there — and they tell their customers about
my restaurant. My [customer] base is Jewish
and Chaldean, and everyone gets along
"They deserve any business they get from
Jewish clientele he said. "It's all about busi-
ness and the happiness of the customer:"
As they celebrate their seventh anniversa-
ry at the Beauty Lounge, expect more great
things from the owners.
"We grew because each person we hired
specializes in something:' Lisa said. "We
believe in education. We train the staff once
a month, often bringing in top-level educa-
tors. We stay ahead of the trends:'
Olivia said, "We do well, and we put much
back into it. We plan to expand again one
A new way to connect.
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December 6 • 2012