Her Passion: From a Freshman at Appalachian State, Boone, NC

Kelly Penick is a remarkable young lady. I met her at the CEO conference where I was one of the keynote speakers. Kelly asked if I would help her develop her business concepts and serve in an advisory capacity on her journey to building her dream. Kelly is starting her venture at almost the same age I started mine. It is exciting to help someone so young with as much determination and drive to excel as Kelly.
My name is Kelly Penick and I am a freshman at Appalachian State University. During my sophomore year of high school, I decided I wanted to become a female entrepreneur and influential businesswoman. I have been exposed to various resorts, spas, and luxury hotels during my lifetime, and the experience has always been personally rewarding. Not only have I received wonderful spa treatments, but have experienced a wonderful night’s sleep on numerous occasions, experienced fine dining, and felt a since of comfort and peace while visiting these facilities.

When I was able to associate the hospitality industry, and more specifically, the hotel & spa industry, with such positive feelings, I discovered my entrepreneurial passion. Would you not love the feeling of ownership of a facility that works to make every second of the day feel relaxed and provide an environment for one to be totally pampered? I thought so, because I can see myself setting back and indulging in these services and appreciating this very atmosphere myself!

In conjunction with my appreciation for the resort, hotel and spa industries, I am also extremely fond of the Golden Age of Hollywood. My own personal attachment to this time period in filmmaking ranges from about 1936-1960. I consider the classics in film to have been made during this age and I confidently say that my favorite actors and actresses are from this era.

It is through the images of legends such as Cary Grant and Grace Kelly that I wish to bring back a timeless age of film with all of its glamour, romance and sophistication, to the modern day luxury resort and spa arena. Guests of the resort will experience elegance unparalleled to any other resort. They will be encompassed by a feeling of old Hollywood glamour and its glittering appeal as they enter a world resembling a film’s movie set/furnishings and the aesthetic appeal of that time.

My family is most involved in my life and since I have grown up with parents who are entrepreneurs, I have difficulty seeing myself working for anyone but myself. The knowledge and experience I have received through my family encourages me to set high standards professionally and personally.

Having grown up in a family business, I see myself as a leader and individual who knows what I want out of my career, as well as someone who has been blessed with a vision and drive to make these dreams a reality. My desire is to have the means and ability to not only provide the finest of cuisine, spa treatments, and atmosphere to my clients, but also give to be able to give back to the betterment of the human race.

Over the years I have had family members who have been victims of Alzheimer’s disease and for those who are familiar with Alzheimer’s scope of influence, the family as well as the victims experience distressing emotional and physical burdens. As this disease makes itself more prevalent in today’s society, I seek to be at the forefront in support of the latest research and development, to potentially combat and restrict the disease’s prevalence in society and hopefully provide consolation for families and individuals who have fallen victim to this degrading disease.

The Alzheimer’s Association has several fundraising events that take place annually, such as the Rita Hayworth Galas, in honor of the beautiful screen legend who suffered from Alzheimer’s in her later life. I would love to see my own luxury resort as a facility where such galas could be hosted, and know that I have a hand in helping to aid those who must deal with this most distressing illness.

I look most forward to specifically two aspects of the resort in particularly. There will be a ballroom in the resort, and within that ballroom I wish to have ballroom dancing and elaborate charity events and galas as mentioned before. I also look forward to my involvement with the guests and members of the resort. I can actually see myself walking into the resort each day and interacting with the employees, visiting clients and members of the resort. Since the resort’s atmosphere will instill a sense of relaxation and ultimate luxury, I anticipate clients saying to me: “I feel wonderful, and I thank you for providing such an inviting and rejuvenating destination for my relaxation and comfort.”

At this time, in between semesters at Appalachian State University, I am embarking on obtaining my certification as a licensed Esthetician in North Carolina. This will be the most developed exposure I have received as yet in the Aesthetics industry, and about which I am most anxious and excited. While fulfilling this program, I will be working with valuable mentors to help me develop a logical 3-year plan to become a business owner while obtaining my college degree.

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