Spa At Canyon Oaks
August 27, 2016 Comments Closed

Price falls on Spa at Canyon Oaks

Posted by:Adam Voight onAugust 27, 2016

Original article by Mike Copeland of

The former Spa at Canyon Oaks property in Crawford has attracted several potential buyers, and local real estate agent Brad Harrell is making counteroffers and seriously negotiating with at least two, said Harrell, who is marketing the facility that for years attracted clients from all across Texas.

The business closed abruptly last month, leaving customers holding worthless gift cards that several spas and salons in Greater Waco agreed to honor. Harrell began seeking offers on the 27-room enterprise spread over 31 acres about two months before it went out of business, quoting an asking price of $1 million.

With the business closing, he has reduced that price to $849,000 at the direction of owner Destiny Williams, who has declined to comment on her reasons for shuttering the Spa at Canyon Oaks complex.

“This property is set up perfectly for a bed and breakfast with multiple lodges and all of the amenities. Other possible ideas include an event center for weddings, family reunions, corporate meetings and anniversaries. With the water set-up, this property could easily be expanded into an RV Park,” according to a brochure marketing the complex.

The brochure also touts the complex’s location at 126 Canyon Oaks Road and State Highway 6, which 8,700 vehicles pass daily.

“The two parties I’m negotiating with envision different uses. That’s all I can say about that,” Harrell said. “I believe I have a deal in the works.”

The property features a main building; rooms for workshops; a meeting hall; suites for beauty and fitness treatments; a spa suite; cottages for longer visits; and a pool, hot tub and sauna, according to promotional material Harrell has updated in pursuit of a buyer.

Harrell would not comment on whether the prospects have indicated they have a specific use planned, saying only that their plans differ.

In 2001, when President George W. Bush had bought a ranch in the area, the spa was planning to deliver certificates for use by first lady Laura Bush and the Bush daughters, according to a Tribune-Herald story at the time.

Closing came as shock

Steven Hinton, a massage therapist at The Spa at Canyon Oaks for three years, said the closing came as a shock to all employees, including the dozen massage therapists. Hinton said the staff learned about the property being put up for sale on social media, not from management. He also said gift cards were selling briskly up to the closing.

“At first, we were told the place would be closed a few days because a well was broken and that someone from outside the state would have to be brought in to fix it,” Hinton said at the time. “That didn’t sound right because there are water wells all over the state, and surely somebody closer could make repairs.”

The next thing employees and the public knew, the spa had closed, and a note on its website said it would be filing for bankruptcy protection.

As of Friday, there had been no filing related to the Spa at Canyon Oaks, according to records at the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Waco.

Leslie Engledow, owner of La Bella Salon and Beauty Lounge at Waco and Valley Mills drives, was one of several establishments that agreed to honor Canyon Oaks’ gift cards fully or partially. Hundreds of people contacted her shop after news broke that she would honor the certificates, Engledow said.

Crystal Balderas, a massage therapist at The Spa at Canyon Oaks for eight years, left the company 10 months ago to start The Skin and Body Refinery at 4125 Austin Ave. It was her impression the spa still was doing well when she departed, Balderas said.

Her salon’s schedule for August filled up quickly when she announced she would honor one service listed on Canyon Oaks’ gift cards, she said Friday.

“Quite a few who came in said they would be back, and the publicity allowed many of my former clients to find me,” Balderas said. “We had girls who had spent between $1,500 and $3,000 on gift certificates at The Spa at Canyon Oaks, and they were not very happy to hear the business had closed.”

Cindy Hyland, owner of Massage Envy at Central Texas Marketplace, said she hired an aesthetician and massage therapist who previously worked at Canyon Oaks.

“We still get customers who ask about what happened,” Hyland said.

Five former Canyon Oaks clients visited her business Thursday, and others were booked Friday, she said.

“Quite a few had so much money built up on their gift cards,” Hyland said. “I think the largest amount we’ve seen is $500.”

She said Massage Envy is providing to these clients one service for $39.99, which is the lowest rate available in her establishment.

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