Anjou Spa, Bend Oregon’s First Organic Spa


(Photo courtesy of Anjou Spa)

In 2008, Terry Riddell asked Jenna Egusa Walden for professional help in starting a “green” spa in downtown Bend. Walden, a business consultant then based in Seattle, was to coordinate the branding, design and fundraising aspects, while Riddell, with spa management experience, would run the day to day operations.

By September, Anjou Spa, Bend’s first organic spa, was born in the “Kate’s Place” building on Franklin Avenue. But less than a year later, the spa was on the verge of bankruptcy and Riddell had given up. Unwilling to let the business die and interested in the possibility of moving to Bend, Walden took over running the 4,000 square foot spa.

“I wanted to be in Bend,” says Walden. “With my skills, I thought I could turn this business around. I put my faith in the staff, location and facility. It felt great to give the employees back their jobs.”

Walden grew up in Lake Oswego, Oregon and received her undergraduate degree in landscape architecture from the University of Oregon. Upon graduating, she left for the east coast to obtain her Masters in Finance from New York University. After graduating from NYU in 2001, Walden moved to Seattle to begin her business career with Vulcan Incorporated.

To reopen Anjou Spa’s doors, literally and figuratively, Walden had to use her business acumen. First, she met with creditors to renegotiate every contract, from the property lease to equipment rentals. Walden recognized that to be successful, she would need to make smart decisions, drive the brand and pay close attention to market analysis. It took almost three years until she finally felt good about Anjou Spa’s state of affairs.

By 2013, Walden and her husband, Noah, an online editor for Bing, had finally made the move from Seattle to Bend. While she was proud of being able to turn around a business on the brink of collapse, Walden had other ideas for the spa industry.

“I have a vision of creating beautiful spaces for healing and relaxation,” explains Walden. “I believe the medical industry should also take space into consideration when treating people.”

Making sure Anjou Spa was organic has always been an important part of the business. A member of the Green Spa Network and the Central Oregon Environmental Center, Anjou Spa prides itself on selling products that are all-natural and organic. In addition, the spa uses energy-efficient lighting, an on-demand hot water system and sustainably-harvested bamboo hardwood floors.

“In 2008-09, being organic and “green” was a fairly new thing,” explains Walden.“But, I thought that was the direction the country, as well as Bend, was headed.”

Walden believes one of her biggest goals is educating the public about products and services. She figures the more her customers know, the more they will ask for effective organic products and services catered to their needs. Walden is proud Anjou Spa vets all of the organic products they sell.

In setting the ambiance for their clientele, roughly 70 percent female, Anjou Spa offers locally sourced Crazy Dave’s Ginger Brew, Deschutes Brewery beer, Oregon Spirit Distillers vodka and bourbon, Metolius Tea and Humm Kombucha.

In November, 2014, they began a membership program that has grown to include over 130 members. They partner with Goodlife Brewing Company to incorporate beer into specialty services called Spa Hoppiness. Walden sees a possible expansion and additional retreat space as future goals for the spa.

Now that Walden has Anjou Spa dialed in, she estimates she only spends ten to fifteen hours a week managing the spa. She is a general contractor/designer as well, rehabbing distressed properties in both Bend and Seattle.

Anjou Spa
225 NW Franklin Avenue, suite 3
CEO: Jenna Egusa Walden
No. Employees: 25
Year Established: 2008
Product/Service: A full-service organic spa
Hot News: Anjou Spa is about to celebrate their seventh anniversary in September and Oktoberfest the following month. They are also about to offer La Bella Donna makeup.
Outlook for Growth: Anjou Spa has posted a 30 percent yearly growth for the last six years. Their new spa membership, enacted last November, has continued to grow alongside their full line of products and services.


About Author

Bend-based freelance writer Gregg Morris honed his wit in suburban Michigan and his gift for the written word at Michigan State University. When not writing, Gregg can be found riding his bike, earning his turns, or playing guitar alongside his wife and daughter.

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