Special to the One Feather
LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Tribal business leaders from across the country gathered in early April for the annual Reservation Economic Summit (RES 2023) hosted by the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development (NCAIED). For over 50 years, NCAIED has been helping Indian Tribes and businesses gain access to economic opportunity and growth. The organization also recognizes outstanding American Indian enterprises at this annual conference. Indigenous Boutique & Spa owners were honored as Native Woman Business Owners of the Year.
In 2020, sisters Jensen Peone and Jade Blankenship founded Indigenous Boutique & Spa in Cherokee, N.C., home of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Enrolled members of the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation in Washington State, the pair grew up on the Spokane Indian Reservation and regularly visited family on the Cherokee Reservation. Blankenship made her home in Cherokee starting in 2012 and Peone in 2015.
“I started working in the spa industry over 10 years ago, serving clients in several high-end spas and eventually offering services out of my home,” said Peone. “Servicing clients in a home business is very challenging, and I was on the brink of giving up and going a different direction,” Peone added, “but my sister approached me with a collaborative business plan for a day spa and boutique and that’s how Indigenous Boutique & Spa came to be.”
Indigenous Boutique & Spa is about helping clients look and feel their very best, and giving community members access to exceptional services. Most importantly, the business serves as an example to others about pursuing their dreams.
“This has been an amazing experience and journey. We get to make an impact on our community. We get to help people look and feel beautiful. We get to encourage other young women and men to follow their passions and their dreams. We get to encourage them to be entrepreneurs and to take risks.” said Blankenship about the honor.
Indigenous Boutique & Spa is located on the Cherokee Indian Reservation at 1655 Acquoni Road, Suite 4. You can learn more about the business at www.indigenousboutiquespa.com.