In the demanding world of spas and wellness, Rekha Chaudhari, MD, JCKRC Spa Destination, Mumbai, and Global Wellness Ambassador for India, proves she has what it takes to be successful.
When she did her cousin’s wedding makeup at age 14, little did she realise that it would lead her down a path that would see her successfully start her own spa and become the Global Wellness Ambassador for India. Today, Rekha Chaudhari is Managing Director of JCKRC Spa Destination, Mumbai, here is her inspiring story.
HOW DID YOUR JOURNEY BEGIN?
I come from a tribal area in the Northwestern part of Maharashtra called Nandurbar. Exposure was limited in our village, and girls did not have much encouragement to venture out on their own. I once did my cousin’s wedding makeup when I was 14 and it turned out exceptionally well. It was the beginning of the journey for me.
I came to Mumbai to pursue a life in the beauty industry. Getting an initial break was a huge challenge. Mumbai was a new city, and I didn’t know anyone here. It was a major shift for me, from my rural lifestyle to the urban one. Those days were tough! I found it difficult to enter and understand the workings of the beauty industry. Around 2004, I came across Rémy Laure, a French skincare line and international brand. I was chosen to represent the brand here in India, and this was a turning point in my life. There has been no looking back since. I worked hard and tried to apply all my skills and ideas while working with the brand, to make sure it got a good name in the market and to establish it in the market using my own concepts. The road to recognition, however, was not smooth.
When I transitioned into the spa and wellness industry, I soon realised that it had existed throughout the ages in India. You read about many treatments in Indian mythology for various ailments. The idea was not new, but we had never really thought about it before. As a child, my father used to ask me to walk on his back when he felt tired or had a back ache, which was the foundation of my award-winning patented Rope Therapy treatment. My father was also responsible of starting a vyayamshala (exercise school) for girls. It was a challenging step to have taken in those times. I was the first student in the school, and under my father’s guidance, I transformed into a fitter and athletic person. I get tremendous satisfaction in the fact that it helped me start my journey and made me the person I am today.
WHAT KIND OF RESEARCH GOES INTO STARTING A SPA?
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May - June 2018