By: Marisa Herman Associate Editor
About six and a half years ago, entrepreneurs and spouses Jessica and Elliott Helmer quit their jobs to pursue owning a business that could help others feel better.
The concept: Salt Suite, a place where people with allergies, asthma, COPD and even those just looking to relax can visit for salt therapy.
Now, the couple oversees two corporate stores and three franchise locations in Delray Beach, Boca Raton, Lake Worth, Palm Beach Gardens, and Fort Lauderdale. A New Jersey location is set to open this summer.
Jessica Helmer said it started when a friend visited a California location and raved about the results of the salt therapy when it came to her allergies.
“We wondered why there weren’t more in the area,” Helmer said.
She and her husband spent the next year and a half researching the business before they decided to quit their jobs and open their own Salt Suite.
Since then, they have helped 40,000 customers throughout their locations.
“It’s been extremely rewarding,” she said. “We have hundreds and hundreds of testimonials. From kids not needing adenoid surgery to adults not needing their inhalers as much. People living a better quality of life.”
The concept is simple. Relax in a salt therapy room for 45 minutes. Read, listen to music or curl up in a blanket and take a nap while you breathe a pharmaceutical grade salt that is blasted into microscopic particles and blown into the air.
“When you relax, you heal,” she said.
Each location has one to two rooms for adults and a children’s room. Parents can accompany their kids for free.
“Kids get the benefit of therapy without knowing it,” she said.
That is because the kid’s room has a sandbox of salt where kids make salt angels, toys and movies.
Boca Raton franchise owner Amanda Bowie was introduced to Salt Suite not long after the Delray location opened.
Her daughter was 4 at the time and suffering from a lot of sinus infections. So, Bowie asked her pediatrician for other ways to treat her daughter besides tons of doses of antibiotics.
Her doctor recommended a visit to Salt Suite.
“I just fell in love with it,” she said. “I remember leaving and saying, ‘I wish there was one in Boca, I would go there every day.’”
She remembered she called her husband and telling him that she “liked everything about it.”
“It helped my daughter during allergy season,” she said. “I don’t have to get her allergy shots.”
When she saw the Delray location was franchising, she called to see if Boca was an option. When the Helmers said yes, she jumped at the opportunity.
The Boca location celebrated its one year anniversary on April 20.
“Seeing all the positives effects, that makes it worth it,” she said.
Salt Suite is a membership based model. You can purchase individual sessions in a package of 10. The first sessions is half-off. There are month-to-month memberships.
In the beginning, Helmer recommends coming in a few times a week and then as you need.
“To see the results, you have to keep it up,” she said.