Franchise Evaluator™: Massage Heights
Massage Heights is well-positioned in the health and wellness industry, offering differentiated massage and spa services. This exceptional franchise opportunity represents a lifestyle brand dedicated to assisting everyday individuals in embracing wellness routines and enhancing their overall quality of life. With almost two decades of experience, Massage Heights has been delivering professional, convenient, and affordable massage and spa services. What began as a single location in San Antonio, Texas, has now expanded to over 100 Retreats across the U.S.and Canada, with further growth on the horizon.
In the same way that Massage Heights elevates the spa experience for its guests, it also enhances the business ownership experience for potential franchisees. By offering a unique opportunity founded on a sustainable membership-based revenue model, owners are enabled to make more accurate cash flow projections. Right from the outset, franchisees receive comprehensive training spanning five weeks, ensuring a thorough understanding of the brand, services, and the ins and outs of running their businesses.
Franchise at a Glance
13750 US Hwy 281 N Suite 925
San Antonio, TX 78232
Year Founded: 2004
Year Started Franchising: 2005
Franchised Units: 115 (2023)
The company’s primary objective is to enhance the lives of the individuals it serves by nurturing their mental, physical, and spiritual well-being. Committed to the overall health of all who step into their Retreats, Massage Heights maintains strong connections with its guests, members, team members, franchise owners, and the larger Massage Heights community.
The company exhibits unwavering dedication to its guests, infusing love and positive energy into every aspect of its service. Massage Heights diligently strives to deliver an elevated experience to each person it interacts with.
In the massive category of personal wellness, the massage therapy market caters to a diverse demographic spectrum, encompassing millennials to baby boomers. Massage Heights is committed to serving the general public, specifically targeting individuals within the mid-level income to affluent brackets, irrespective of age and diverse needs. Unlike some seasonal ventures, Massage Heights offers year-round services, primarily focusing on meeting adults’ health and wellness requirements in urban and suburban areas.
As of July 2023, statistics reveal that 27% of American adults had received a massage within the last 12 months, representing a notable increase from the 23% recorded in the previous year. This surge amounts to a 4% rise in the number of American adults seeking massage treatments year after year, translating to approximately 10.4 million individuals.
In addition to its core massage and spa services, Massage Heights has also added many sought after high quality facial services that help franchisees capitalize on the vast facial/beauty segment. Innovation and constant search for additional products and services that align with the Massage Heights core mission contribute to the overall 95% customer retention rate.
The massage therapy sector is experiencing a substantial growth rate of roughly 8.6%, driven by an increasing number of individuals prioritizing self-care. This growth is notably propelled by the positive impact of massage therapy on mental health – and the inclusion of massage therapy as part of people’s overall wellness routine. According to the FMI Market report, the massage therapy industry has burgeoned into a $54 billion market in the United States.
With nearly 20 years of experience in their proven business model, Massage Heights continues to demonstrate a rapid upward trajectory. In 2022, they witnessed a 25% increase in same-store sales growth compared to 2019, over $1M average unit volume (AUV), and a record-breaking systemwide revenue two years in a row.
Product and Service Drivers
Massage Heights consistently strives to enhance the lives of its guests. They accomplish this by offering a diverse array of massage therapy and facial services.
Rising prices for massage therapy packages, particularly in low- and middle-income economies, could potentially impede growth. Massage Heights has designed, implemented, and refined a guest experience that centers its belief that the upscale – yet affordable – therapeutic services they provide should be accessible to all.
Massage Heights has recently forged an exclusive partnership with Promise Nutraceuticals, a socially conscious company co-chaired by the legendary athlete Vincent E. “Bo” Jackson, renowned for his professional baseball and football achievements. This collaborative effort will see Massage Heights introduce an add-on service and make the “Promise Drops” Topical Relief Oil available at its nationwide retreats beginning in November 2023.
As a brand, Massage Heights remains committed to innovation, currently focusing on the introduction of its latest client experience – infrared light therapy.
Massage Heights main competitors may be other franchised massage concepts, independent massage service providers, and other establishments adding massage as a service line. As the idea of “massage” as a necessary wellness therapy enters the center of everyday consumers’ thinking, the market will continue to grow for all. The massage therapy market comprises a diverse demographic range, encompassing millennials to baby boomers. Within this market, the increasing prevalence of mental exhaustion, stress, and fast-paced lifestyles – and solutions for natural remedies – has cultivated a growing demand for massage and spa services. Massage Heights advocates for the significance of self-care, emphasizing the advantages of incorporating regular massages into one’s routine. This commitment to self-care leads to a host of wellness-enhancing benefits, such as stress reduction and improved flexibility.
What’s important to note, Massage Heights’ commitment to their guests has led to a 95% program retention rate.
Governing authorities have implemented regulations to ensure the safety of both employees and visitors in the operation of many massage therapy and skin care businesses as well as massage therapists. Every massage therapist and esthetician is required to to be licensed in accordance with state and local laws and requirements which may be similar to the licensing requirements for other personal service providers such as hair stylists. Massage Heights upholds rigorous standards for cleanliness and operational excellence and ensures that every franchisee adheres to all applicable laws and regulations within their respective geographic areas. Additionally, they prioritize the use of top-quality massage tables, linens, and all-natural oils and product lines to enhance the guest experience.
BUSINESS MODEL Factors
This is one of the most important factors of all. To understand it you have to look beyond what the business physically does, the services performed or products sold and ask how does the franchise make money? Where does the revenue come from? How is it generated? Are financial performance representations made? Coupled with External Factors 1, 2 and 5 – Market Size, Industry Trend and Competitive Climate and the next Internal Factor 2, Franchisee Role – the true nature of the franchise starts to take shape.1 of 1
Massage Heights has established and refined a proven business model, supported by the highly desirable membership-driven recurring revenue and accompanied by a full menu of services and add-ons. The true beauty of recurring revenue through the membership model is the predictability that comes as a result. Forecasted sales numbers allow owners to budget expenses accordingly and schedule staffing efficiently. As stated previously, Massage Heights’ commitment to their guests has led to a 95% program retention rate.
For the past two decades, Massage Heights has been diligently crafting a brand with a twofold mission. This mission involves offering consumers affordable, upscale, and convenient spa services while concurrently creating a well-established and successful business model for their franchisees. The company has expanded its presence to encompass over 100 locations, referred to as Retreats. Massage Heights stands out by providing comprehensive corporate support right from the outset, including the provision of proprietary technology, including billing and scheduling software, along with the availability of prime territories throughout the U.S. and Canada.
In this highly diffuse world, creating, managing and projecting a Brand is essential for the health and vitality of a franchise system. How well does the Franchisor manage this? How well positioned is the brand among competitors? Is it differentiated enough? How well would potential customers recognize the brand? How is it projected into new markets? What is your role and obligations in this process? How is the Brand’s digital footprint managed?1 of 1
Massage Heights is consistently in the top five franchised massage concepts and has elevated its brand in the markets it serves by relentless focus on the guest experience. The Massage Heights concept originated from the belief that a broader audience should enjoy access to professional massage and facial services in an upscale setting, all without the prohibitive cost that frequently limits these services to a select few. Founded in 2004 in San Antonio, Texas, Massage Heights has since expanded its presence to encompass locations throughout the United States and in Canada, with no signs of slowing down. Massage Heights has developed an elevated, comprehensive brand identity and experience led by a seasoned Spa-Franchise Leadership Team. In October 2023, Massage Heights unveiled an exclusive partnership with Promise Nutraceuticals, a socially conscious enterprise co-chaired by the renowned former professional baseball and football player Vincent E. “Bo” Jackson.
A comprehensive marketing and brand support platform is available to all Massage Heights franchisees to help them acquire new customers and keep existing ones.
The franchisee’s role at Massage Heights involves a range of responsibilities, which include setting objectives for the manager, marketing the location, and overseeing the recruitment and training of staff. Typically, each location maintains an average employee count of 15 to 20 individuals, with a predominant number of them being licensed Massage Therapists and Estheticians.
The franchisees that overachieve in the Massage Heights system typically possess a background in sales or customer service and actively influence their local community. Furthermore, they embrace and live a healthy lifestyle, aligning with the values and mission of Massage Heights. This combination of skills and attributes allows franchisees to thrive in their multifaceted positions within the organization, driving both personal and business success.
The franchisee’s role is typically defined as general manager, not a provider of massage or spa services.
Real Estate Needs
Massage Heights’ space requirements are conveniently adaptable and primarily centered around adhering to state and local regulations related to accessibility and safety. The recommended space for Massage Heights typically falls within the range of 2,200 to 2,600 square feet. This flexibility enables franchisees to have versatility in choosing suitable locations. An additional benefit is that there are no stringent demands for heavy equipment or specialized access, making it a straightforward and accessible option compared to other service-oriented businesses.
No extensive build-outs are a definite plus.
Massage Heights was initiated by its founders, Shane and Wayne Evans, in response to Shane’s enduring battle with chronic back pain. The co-founders recognized a significant gap in the market where many individuals grapple with discomfort stemming from muscle tension, aches, joint ailments, and stress, yet accessible therapeutic services were scarce. Understanding the intrinsic value of self-care and the profound transformation that spa services can bring to people’s lives, Shane and Wayne established Massage Heights in 2004 in San Antonio, Texas. Presently, the company boasts a widespread presence across the United States and Canada (over 100 locations and growing), demonstrating a commitment to continued expansion and the availability of prime territories nationwide.
Massage Heights’ leadership is a dynamic force, blending seasoned expertise and fresh perspectives to guide the company toward industry leadership. This invaluable combination not only cultivates a culture of excellence but also consistently surpasses expectations, resulting in well-operated businesses. President and CEO Susan Boresow, a self-proclaimed corporate culture champion with over three decades of hands-on involvement in the massage and franchising industry, stands at the helm of this dedicated team. Under her visionary leadership, Massage Heights is poised to continue its ascent as an industry leader, committed to fostering excellence and setting new standards in the massage and spa franchise sector.
Much of Massage Heights’ success is due to passionate, empowered franchisees who all buy into the brand vision to Elevate the Everyday. Selecting the right franchisees who all are in alignment is critical to the success of any franchise who achieves over 100 locations. Regular meetings, conferences, and open communication and collaboration are all hallmarks of a truly engaged franchisee base – and it is reflected where it matters most…where the guest meets the service experience.
Massage Heights takes pride in highlighting the elements of its business model that render the franchise opportunity an excellent choice and a great fit for many. With almost two decades of experience within a proven business framework, Massage Heights maintains a trajectory of remarkable growth. This is underscored by a substantial 25% increase in same-store sales growth in 2022 compared to 2019. The franchise boasts an average unit volume (AUV) surpassing $1 million and achieved record-breaking revenue in 2022, exceeding $121,000,000. The brand remains dedicated to innovation, presently focusing on the incorporation of its latest client experience – infrared light therapy.
Initial Franchise Fee
Financial Performance Representation
Average Number of Employees
Initial (Years) & Renewal
Total Franchise Evaluator Score
0 – 24
Missing fundamental, internal or external factors
25 – 49
More investigation is needed
50 – 74
Worth exploring further with caution
75 – 99
Add to consideration set
100 – 140
Sound opportunity and likely a great fit