Categorized | Local Business

Couple Hopes to Give Sag Harbor Happy Feet

Posted on 11 January 2013

By Emily J. Weitz

 

It may be situated on the chaotic corner of Division Street and Bay Street, but when you open the door of Happy Feet and step inside, it’s as if you were transported. Wei Wei Roger, dressed in silk, meets you at the door to take your coat. She leads you through the dimly lighted room to a chair that unfolds into a veritable bed, and that’s where the real transformation begins.

Happy Feet is a healing space devoted primarily to reflexology. There are also private rooms for full body massage treatments. But an hour of reflexology has an impact on the whole body, notes Roger.

“The feet are a reflection of the body,” says Chris Roger, Wei Wei’s husband, partner, and spokesperson for the business. “If you can take care of your feet, you can take care of a lot of problems in the body.”

Wei Wei interviewed all the practitioners and hand-picked the staff of the newly opened Sag Harbor business, which only hired licensed practitioners. Tony, who massaged my feet for a solid hour, was attentive to the point of loving. I felt blockages years in the making release.

It’s not just the feet that are getting pampered at Happy Feet, though. The attention to detail in the space is evident, and as you tilt back your head, you’ll see cherry blossoms climbing the walls and paper umbrellas hanging from the ceiling. The music is quieting, and Wei Wei brings each client a pot of warm orange blossom tea with fresh fruit and little candies. When the foot bath is filled with piping hot water, Wei Wei then sprinkles rose petals in it.

“It’s very important to her to provide tea and treats,” says Chris. “She loves to give comfort. You don’t just walk in here, get a treatment, and be gone. You walk in and relax. You get away from Sag Harbor for a little while.”

Reflexology spaces like this one are very common in Kunming, China, where Wei Wei is from. After a long day on their feet, Chinese professionals kick up their heels and get pampered. When Wei Wei moved to Flushing, Queens, she found there were many other immigrants skilled in this kind of work. It was always her dream to start her own business.

“When she lived in China, Wei Wei ran two businesses of this kind,” says Chris. “She’s done nails, facials, massage… Always everything for other people. So finally she took all her experience and turned it into our business.”

Chris and Wei Wei met online, and decided to meet in person right away. Chris went in to Flushing, and they stumbled through their first meeting, she barely speaking English and he without a word of Mandarin. But their relationship quickly grew, and after a few months they decided Chris would travel with her to China to meet her family.

“We drove all over China, Singapore, Malaysia, and Thailand,” says Chris. “Her family was very kind, and we had a great time.”

They also spent a lot of time in places like Happy Feet, experiencing a tradition of Chinese culture. So when they came back to the United States with a wedding to plan, they had a feeling the business would quickly follow.

“It’s always been her desire to start a business,” says Chris. Wei Wei wanted to bring her mother and son over to the United States, which she has now done. Her mother lives with Chris and Wei Wei here in Sag Harbor, and her 22-year-old son is in school in the city.

Wei Wei and Chris worked fast, beginning the business project last June. They didn’t tell anyone about their plans. Chris felt it was important to just do it, without worrying about anyone else’s opinions. It was Wei Wei’s opinion that mattered to him most, he said.

“We started with a little white room,” says Chris. “Wei Wei arranged everything. She chose the colors, she went to Chinatown and got the cherry blossoms and umbrellas. But we worked on it together.”

That aspect of working together is paramount.

“My goal is to provide a nice service for the community,” says Chris, “but also to do something that my wife and I can enjoy together.”

For an hour of reflexology and pampering, the cost is $35. A plantogen balancing skin facial is $55. There is also a selection of full body treatments to take you on a mini retreat.

“We take our customers out of New York,” says Chris. “This is not just another salon in Sag Harbor. This is a little trip to Asia.”

Happy Feet is located at 2 Bay Street in Sag Harbor. For more information, call 808-3009.

 

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17 Responses to “Couple Hopes to Give Sag Harbor Happy Feet”

  1. Marian says:

    Could you please send me a price list. THANK YOU

  2. christina says:

    Ive been there for God knows how often, I’d say every week since March. This place is amazing if you are looking for an hour of relaxation. The foot reflexology is something you shouldn’t miss for a very cheap price. BUT you have to make an appointment at least a week before, otherwise you’ll end up on a facial table as they only have five recliners. All in all, this is a “must go” kind of place. :)

  3. Dale says:

    I would like to schedule treatments for 6 friends together. Is that possible? Thank you!

  4. Dan Martin says:

    Send me info please

  5. Sharon says:

    Things are not as happy as the name at Happy Feet. I went in there today for a scheduled appointment and was told by the white man at the reception desk that I would be on a table. Since tables are not visible when you first walk in and I did not even know they had tables, I asked what the difference was. He said nothing. I said i would take the chair then. He told me if I did not want the table I could leave. Shocked, I said I would leave. At this point they had already processed my credit card payment. A lovely woman came over to me and politely explained to me the difference between the chair and the table which sounded reasonable, so i said OK. I had already done yoga, walked on the beach, done deep breathing and affirmations and was so ready for this reflexology and the woman was so lovely and accommodating and I was in shock, so I let her lead me to the table. I mentioned to the man at the desk about the inappropriateness of his poor customer service and he told me that he was the owner and he decided if I could stay or leave and don’t get an attitude with him. I was shaken, and Wei Wei his wife was as gentle and loving and kind as she could be. She apologized profusely for her husbands behavior and said she had to had to have a big heart to deal with him because of the way he is. She mentioned that his mother had recently died. She could not have been sweeter. I will not reveal everything she said to me because of her wonderful spirit, but clearly something is wrong there. I, of course could not relax and could not shut my eyes. I lay there trying to process what happened and just observed this operation for 45 minutes. Jimmy my reflexologist was wonderful. He tried to put me at ease. Wei Wei came over many times to make sure I was ok. It is a well oiled machine with all Asian reflexologists. This white man is in charge, and I an African AMerican woman walk in and get this treatment. But now I cannot tell if it is really zen in there or some other kind of weird control by the irrational and rude owner. And they call it Happy Feet? Most bizarre experience ever.

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