Armed with just a single, generations-old cookie recipe, Great American Cookies opened its first store in 1977, and the rest is history. Today, the franchise boasts locations in malls across the country and nabbed a coveted spot on Entrepreneur magazine’s 2012 list of Top 500 Franchises in the baked-goods category. The shop’s reputation grew, and so did its menu as chefs churned out a mouthwatering roster of gourmet-cookie recipes, each created and carefully tested in Atlanta. The tempting options now include snickerdoodle, peanut butter with M&M’s, and chewy pecan supreme, as well as freshly baked fudge and cheesecake brownies and cookie sandwiches stuffed with frosting. The real showstoppers, however, are the giant chocolate-chip cookie cakes, which can be customized with sweet, celebratory messages or shopping lists penned in colorful icing.
Claudia's aesthetician training began miles away from Charleston in her native country of Brazil, where she studied Health Education at Anhembi University and worked at spas throughout S?o Paulo. She brings her firsthand expertise in Brazilian waxing and beauty treatments to each of her five spas, administering a variety of waxing services along with various body treatments, facials, endermologie treatments, and massages. She and her fellow aestheticians also offer threading and sugaring treatments that remove hair without relying on wax. Her passions have driven her to open a network of spas located in North Charleston, James Island, Mt. Pleasant, Summerville, and Columbia.
At Select Fitness, plate-loaded weight machines clink and chime as a sea of runners pound out miles on treadmills equipped with personal LCD TVs. The cardio deck?s assortment of ellipticals, summit trainers, and cycling machines help carve off calories while free weight workouts define muscles. Along with a slate of aerobic and group fitness classes, including ripped, yoga, and kickboxing, members take advantage of the gym?s basketball court and cardio theater as well as creature comforts including a juice bar and full service day care center. Personal trainers are also available to provide clients with necessary tools for toning the body, shedding fat, and how to maintain their physique.
Midas Auto Service Experts unleash more than 50 years of experience and a host of vehicle-maintenance services to keep buggies in optimum health. Technicians tune up autos with preventative-maintenance measures such as replacing outdated fluids with up to 5 quarts of conventional or synthetic oil, restoring alignment to wobbly wheels, and putting a stop to runaway rides with NAPA-brand brake installations. Mechanics also perform exhaust services to ensure environmental compliance, shape up suspensions, and keep mannequin passengers made of ice from melting with climate-control repairs.
The highly trained technicians at Jiffy Lube tend to about 24 million customers each year with services such as the Jiffy Lube Signature Service Oil Change package, which helps promote the longevity of each vehicle. Staffers acknowledge that oil plays a crucial role in maximizing the lifespan of each car—it cools the motor and helps prevent moving parts from deteriorating. More than 20,000 technicians—all of which have completed an extensive training program certified by the National Institute Automotive Service Excellence (ASE)—service vehicles at Jiffy Lube. In addition to performing oil changes, technicians offer preventative services such as air-filtration and electrical-system maintenance, among others. Jiffy Lube’s quality pledge includes a commitment to transparency, which stipulates that they will inform car owners of any necessary services, complete a service only after it has been approved, and refuse to replace windshields with saran wrap.
A two-story castle, jumbo stuffed animals, and Xbox video games—these aren’t what most people picture when they think of a dentist’s office. But these amenities and more are found at Coastal Kids Dental & Braces, whose founder and mother of two Dr. Isabel aims to make going to the dentist fun. She and a skilled staff of pediatric dentists and hygienists make every effort to put children at ease and answer their questions about the tooth fairy’s interest rates. In rooms decorated with galactic, naval, and underwater themes, these experts cater to their pintsize patients while assessing oral health and evaluating the need for orthodontics. The patients themselves can watch movies on flat-screen televisions while they swish with fluoride and open wide.