2009-05-16 / Top News

Little Luxuries Owner's Five-year Plan To Own Business Hits Fast Track

By Ryan Schlehuber

At left: Nicole Smith has opened her new business on Mackinac Island's Main Street, called Little Luxuries of Mackinac Island. It caters to women, she says, and to men looking for gifts for their loved ones. At left: Nicole Smith has opened her new business on Mackinac Island's Main Street, called Little Luxuries of Mackinac Island. It caters to women, she says, and to men looking for gifts for their loved ones. Nicole Smith's five-year plan to own her own business hit the fast track this spring as she opened the doors to her new gift store, Little Luxuries of Mackinac Island, Friday, May 1.

Little Luxuries caters mostly to women, however, she said, "it's a great place for men shopping for gifts for their loved ones, too."

It offers baby gifts, stationery, home decor, jewelry, bath and body products, and entertainment gifts.

Miss Smith, 23, originally from St. Johns, also plans to hold special events, such as "ladies night" sales and "trunk shows." Her first trunk show will be during the Mackinac Island Lilac Festival in June.

The opportunity to begin her business presented itself early when the store space in Lilac Tree Hotel Mall became available with the departure of the former occupant, Roses and Sadies.

The store received a complete interior makeover as Miss Smith repainted the walls and installed a new counter, custom shelves, and a wood floor.

"Being a new, first-time owner, I've learned a lot in a short time," she said. "I've learned you have to be organized and I've done my research on products, going to gift shows and finding the right kinds of products for the store."

She has worked on the Island the past four summers and spent her first winter here this year.

She was an assistant manager for Grand Hotel last summer and, this winter, along with getting her store ready, she assisted Mary Patay with the Mackinac Island Lakers girls varsity basketball squad.

She also was involved with Ste. Anne's Catholic Church, helping create a "giving tree" during Christmas, and filled in as a substitute teacher at Mackinac Island Public School.

"The winter went by really fast, considering I was working to open the store," she said. "I was expecting just to relax and read some books for the winter."

Little Luxuries will be open every day at 10 a.m. throughout the summer.

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