Today we’d like to introduce you to Warren and Kari Shulman from Valley Salt Cave. They share their story with us below:
Warren and Kari grew up in South Africa. Warren is from Johannesburg and Kari is from Cape Town. Warren went to Cape Town, the most beautiful city in the world, on holiday after high school, and ended up staying there and studying finance and accounting, at the University of Cape Town. Kari studied to be a Librarian at Cape Technicon. Warren started working as a trainee accountant at Arthur Andersen, and Kari began working as a corporate librarian at Andersen Consulting. They met in the Arthur Andersen/Andersen Consulting library and fell in love.
Warren qualified as a Chartered Accountant and moved to Los Angeles on January 16, 1994, the day before the Northridge Earthquake, having never been to America before. Kari joined him a year and a half later with their four-year-old son. They both settled into very comfortable jobs as a CPA and a Librarian in Los Angeles.
In 2000, they moved to Philadelphia and Warren joined a startup company as their CFO, in the online and wireless reservation space. By then, they had two sons aged nine and three. Unfortunately, the startup was short-lived and was part of the dot bomb crash.
They moved back to Los Angeles in 2001 and Warren became a partner at his previous CPA firm in Westwood. Their youngest son was born in 2002. After seventeen years as a CPA firm audit partner, Warren took early retirement in December 2017.
In March 2018, they co-founded, built and opened a Holistic Health and Wellness center with two Himalayan Salt Caves and three treatment rooms in Roslyn, New York, together with Warren’s sister. In September 2020, they founded, built and opened a similar facility in Woodland Hills, near their home in West Hills.
Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It has not been an easy path. We signed our lease just over two years ago in September 2019, before the Covid Pandemic began. It took about six months to obtain the construction permits, as it is notoriously very difficult to build in the City of LA, and the Covid pandemic significantly slowed down the permit approval process.
We started construction in April 2020, and completed construction in September 2020, in the middle of the Covid pandemic. Not the best time to open any new business, but the ball was already rolling and there was no stopping it. We finally opened our new business in October 2020, a year after entering into our lease, and we have just recently celebrated our first successful year in business.
Although Halotherapy or Dry Salt Therapy is very popular in Europe and on the East coast, it is still very new to the West coast and a lot of education and advertising is required. We do not have a marketing budget as we are a brand-new business and have been relying on social media and word of mouth for people to learn about us. We have also been very fortunate to have been featured on a local tv show and have had a few great articles written about us.
We have also had to contend with all the Covid restrictions in California and LA County, and most recently the City of LA indoor mask mandate and vaccine verification rules.
We’ve been impressed with Valley Salt Cave, but for folks who might not be as familiar, what can you share with them about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
We are a Holistic Health and Wellness Center in Woodland Hills, with a beautiful large Himalayan Salt Cave that can fit up to 14 people and a small Himalayan Salt Cave that can fit up to 4 people or two massage tables, as well as two treatment rooms.
We provide Holistic health services such as dry salt therapy (Halotherapy), salty yoga, sound baths, mindful meditation and EFT tapping, salty massages, massages, Reiki and host parties and events. We also sell Himalayan Salt products, crystals, essential oils and sanitizers, as well as a selection of lovely jewelry.
The distinguishing feature of our business is the community that we have created in a very short period of time. Many of our clients and service providers have become our friends. We provide amazing client service and are intimately involved in the day-to-day operations of our business. There are very few Himalayan Salt Caves in Los Angeles and none that look like ours.
So maybe we end on discussing what matters most to you and why?
The most important thing to us is our family. We have three wonderful sons and an incredible daughter-in-law. Our two younger sons both also have amazing girlfriends, who we are very fond of. We are also very close to most of our siblings even though they all live on different continents. Both of us have only one living parent and we are very close to them too. Seeing that we do not have any immediate extended family in Los Angeles, we have made some very good friends who have become like family, and we fondly refer to them as our Framily.
- The basic cost of a 45-minute salt cave session is $45 per person.
- We also offer 3, 5 and 10 salt cave session packages that can be used interchangeably and cost less per session as you buy more.
- We also offer monthly unlimited salt cave session packages, limited to the purchasers use only, as well as 3 weeks or 2 months unlimited salt cave session special packages for new clients only.
- Most of our Group Sound Baths and Guided Meditation and EFT Tapping sessions cost $50 per person.
- The cost for a 1-hour Massage or a 1 on 1 Reiki and Sound Bath session in one of our Treatment rooms is $125 per person and $175 per person in our small salt cave.
- The basic cost for a 1-hour Salty Yoga session in the salt cave is $40 per person. We also offer 3, 5 and 10 salty yoga session packages, that cost less per session as you buy more.
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: www.valleysaltcave.com
- Instagram: www.instagram.com/valleysaltcave/
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/Valley-Salt-Cave-109106544128869
- Yelp: www.yelp.com/biz/valley-salt-cave-woodland-hills-3?osq=valley+salt+cave