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Davenport salon lights up clients' lives
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Photo: Gary Krambeck/gkrambeck@qconline.com
DaMel and Craig Smith, owners of Salon Luce and Spa Luce in Davenport.
In Latin, the word luce translates to light, and for Craig and DaMel Smith, owners of Salon Luce and Spa Luce, the word signifies a "brightening and uplifting experience," something they hope to bring to all their clients.

"We have a saying that really is the embodiment of our attitudes toward life: It is '"In luce vive, vive in amore.' It means 'live in light, live in love,'" Mr. Smith said of the business at 400 N. Main St., Suite 106, Davenport.

Ms. Smith started as a receptionist in a salon when she was 14, attended cosmetology school after high school, then built a career as a stylist and small business owner.

Mr. Smith handles customer service, guest relations, training and other aspects of the business, while his wife focuses on styling. They couple has two teenage children.

The salon opened in April 2008, with the location chosen for its "character and history." They worked to create a modern look in an urban atmosphere, retaining the historical charm.

In January 2011, they expanded and debuted Spa Luce at the Hotel Blackhawk.

Starting with a staff of four in 2008, the Smiths now have 27 employees, and they expect to hire more when they complete an expansion that would triple their current salon space. It will include Luce Académy, an advanced training center where staff can earn continuing education credits and accreditation and hone their craft.

The salon offers everything from haircuts and styling to color, makeup and waxing, while the spa offers massage and skin therapy, pedicures and manicures. Luce Man, the barber shop at Hotel Blackhawk, offers barber services, such as a hot shave.

The Smiths refer to themselves as daymakers, because their "favorite thing is making someone's day, bringing a smile to their face and a bounce to their step, and making someone happy by giving the best service we can," Mr. Smith said.

Ms. Smith agreed, adding they work with clients to find a look that "works best with their lifestyle," something the client can recreate day after day.

"It's our job as service providers to find that perfect style for you," Mr. Smith said.

Ms. Smith said she often wishes for "more hours in a day and to be two places at once. We want to have a conversation and connection with every person who comes through the door."

Abby Duax, a Davenport resident and Luce hair stylist for five years, said the Smiths are "genuine, great people, and they really care about the downtown community and progress."

"We're proof that, even if something is a challenge, it can be done," Mr. Smith said, adding that they hope to set an example for their children "to not restrict yourself, to find something you love and to create your own opportunities."





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