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Amy & Emilee Hembrow

Amy & Emilee Hembrow (image supplied)
Amy & Emilee Hembrow (image supplied)

When we mention the name Hembrow, chances are, you know the family we are referring to. And rightly so! Because the family does have its fair share of noteworthy members. Two of which are Amy & Emilee. The sisters together are the founders of the award-winning skin clinic, SSKIN, located in Bundall. Which also happens to be one of the top influencer and celebrity hot spots on the Gold Coast.

We were fortunate enough recently to get to know the entrepreneurs and what it was like launching a holistic beauty business in the midst of the pandemic on the Gold Coast. Read on to find out more.

How long have you both been Gold Coast locals?
A- We were born on the Gold Coast, we lived here most of our lives but moved overseas when we were teenagers. We moved around quite a bit from Singapore to Geneva, but we ended up back on the Gold Coast eventually in our 20’s.
E- Born on the Gold Coast and then moved overseas in high school and traveled around with the family for a while then made our way back in my early 20s.

What do you each love the most about the Gold Coast?
A- The lifestyle. I love how close everything is and the beaches.
E- I love how relaxing it is, everyone is super chilled and easy going. Being super busy with the kids and work it’s nice that the Gold Coast is slow-paced.

SSKIN Interior (image supplied)

Tell us how SKINN Clinic came about.
A- Emilee came to me with an idea, she wanted me to contribute my business background and at first, I said I wasn’t interested because I was too busy but then I finished up working at Saski Collection and messaged her saying I was all in.
E- I honestly had no place I would recommend to friends and family to go, nor a place I felt comfortable going for my own treatments. I wanted to create a safe place to go with wonderful staff and all the perfect treatments under the one roof. I also wanted a quiet location, not on a main road or shopping centre so its private for our clients.

What makes running a business on the Gold Coast so great?
A- The sense of community. SSKIN is my first business that is face-to-face services and I love getting that feedback and having those touchpoints with the consumer.
E- I love working with such amazing employees, we are like a little family and they are all so great to work with. I also love that I now have a place to go for all my beauty/skin needs.

What’s it like being in business with your sibling?
A- It’s great! You always have someone to lean on and we both work to our strengths.
E- I think it’s really nice that I get to work with my sister, we both have such different ideas for the clinic so we bounce things off each other and get to be super creative together.

SSKIN Clinic (image supplied)
SSKIN Clinic (image supplied)

Being entrepreneurs, what are the biggest challenges you have both faced?
A- Balancing family life with work life, especially seeing as we are family. It can be hard to switch out of work mode.
E- Balancing mum life with working. Its a juggle that keeps me super busy!

What did you learn from opening a business in the middle of a pandemic?
A- That you need to be adaptable and to have contingency plans in place for when you may need to pivot in your business plan.
E- To be innovative! In life, things will pop up and you need to look at it as an opportunity to grow, not as a dead end.

What does a typical day in the life of each of you look like?
A- Every day is different for me it usually starts with coffee and breakfast with my family before heading into the clinic. In the afternoons I like to take my daughter to the park or for beach walks.
E- Every day is so different, some days I work from home with the kids. I will take them to a park or play centre to let them burn off some energy while I pump through emails. Sometimes I’m strict with the kids with no work allowed; and some days I get the kids babysat while I work, whether it be: work at SSKIN, photoshoots, events etc

SSKIN treatment room (image supplied)
SSKIN treatment room (image supplied)

Tell us the best piece of advice someone has ever given you and why you consider it the best?
A- That we all feel a sense of imposter syndrome at one point or another, it doesn’t mean you’re an imposter it just means you’re pushing yourself further out of your boundaries. I like this advice because it’s easy to let self-doubt cripple you from moving forward. I remind myself that if I feel a little uncomfortable to push through, I look back on moments and remember that feeling and I’m so proud for where I am now.
E- Don’t let the fear of failure stop you from reaching your dreams. Life and business is all about trial and error, if you dont try you won’t ever achieve your goals.

What are you both looking forward to the most in the next 12 months?
A- I’m having a baby so that’s a big one! Also growing my business, it’s not even 2 years old yet so it’s still got a lot of growing to do.
E- Being able to travel again!

SSKIN waiting room (image supplied)
SSKIN waiting room (image supplied)

What are your Gold Coast favourites…
A
Café: Paddock
Coffee spot: Canvas
Restaurant: Labart
Bar or pub for a drink: Apres Surf
E
Café: Bam Bam Bakehouse
Coffee spot: Manolas Brothers
Restaurant: Little Truffle
Bar or pub for a drink: The Tropics

How do you each choose to spend your days off?
A- Relaxing, pool days, hanging at my mum’s house with all my sisters and their kids too.
E- Going to the beach with the kids and my hubby.

Emily Skye

Emily Skye (image supplied)
Emily Skye (image supplied)

If you haven’t already realised Mother’s Day is fast approaching – which means you better start thinking about how you are going to treat the number one lady in your life. The special day aside, we personally think that you should celebrate mum every day. Not only does she care and cook for you, she often has a long list of other responsibilities herself. Some mums even run a business too! And that is exactly what mum of two, fitness influencer and founder of James Cosmetics, Emily Skye does. No doubt you have seen Emily on Instagram as she has over a whopping 2.5 MILLION followers. Emily squeezed answering a few questions for Inside Gold Coast into her hectic work schedule. Read on to get to know Emily both personally and professionally!

How long have you been a Gold Coast local?
8 years now!

Tell us a bit about yourself.
I’m a mother of two beautiful kids, Mia and Izaac, and I also own two businesses, Emily Skye FIT, my fitness app, and James Cosmetics, my beauty company. Through my FIT app I’ve been able to reach and connect with millions of women around the world who are working together as a community to strive for a healthier, happier lifestyle. James Cosmetics are beauty products I truly swear by and use myself! I’ve always had a huge interest in the beauty industry and wanted to share products that I love with everyone! I also have an amazing community of women through my Facebook and Instagram pages who inspire me everyday!

Emily wearing her James Cosmetics eye masks (image supplied)
Emily wearing her James Cosmetics eye masks (image supplied)

How did both James Cosmetics and the Emily Skye Fit app come about?
I started Emily Skye FIT after a very hard time in my life where I struggled a lot with my body image and an unhealthy lifestyle. I was in a very bad place mentally and physically and wanted to make a change. I made healthy changes in my life and started eating healthy and exercising and it completely changed my life! I wanted to share that feeling with other women and made it my mission to share knowledge I had learned along the way with other women so they can make positive changes just like I did! Over the years, FIT has become such an amazing platform where we are just one big community, constantly encouraging each other and helping each other each day! The app has definitely evolved as well as I have, as a mother I really wanted to include a pregnancy program and post pregnancy, and these have had such a great response!

James Cosmetics is my beauty company and something I am so passionate about! I’ve always been interested in beauty and skincare, I even became a qualified beautician 15 years ago! The products we release with James Cosmetics are genuinely just products that I use and want to incorporate into my routine! We started with just our 24K Gold & Collagen Crystal Eye Mask, and it still remains as one of our best selling products!

Tell us what your proudest entrepreneurial moment is?
A couple of things would definitely be being named Forbes #3 influencer in the world, and featuring on the cover of Women’s Health Magazine in more than 20 countries! They are both definitely pinch me things that I’m very proud of!

Emily Skye with her children, Mia and Izaac (image supplied)
Emily Skye with her children, Mia and Izaac (image supplied)

As a very busy woman, how do you manage your time to really strike that work/life balance?
I’ve found the best thing you can do is plan ahead and have lots of structure. I was never really any good at structure before having kids, I was quite spontaneous and didn’t like planning anything too far in advance. I’ve had to change that since becoming a mother and having businesses. It’s all about prioritising and having a to do list to get through and sticking to it! I’m still learning of course, but having a routine has much a huge difference to my everyday life and my mental health.

What do you love the most about being a mum?
Being a mum is just amazing in itself. Having these little humans that you and the person you love the most in the world created together and they’re like a mini you but with their own personalities. It’s so cool seeing kids grow up and evolve and watch their personalities come out! I love being able to have an impact on someone the way I can with my kids, teaching them what I’ve learned through life and being a role model to them.

How are you planning on spending this Mother’s Day?
I’m looking forward to just spending time with the kids and being grateful for them and being proud of myself as well for what I’ve done and what my body has done! I’ll also definitely be showing appreciation to my own mother as well for the amazing job she did raising my sister and I on her own!

James Cosmetics Products (image supplied)
James Cosmetics Products (image supplied)

What are your Gold Coast favourites…
Café:
BSKT
Coffee spot: Three Beans Cafe
Restaurant: Gemelli
Bar or pub for a drink: The only bar I’m familiar with is a barbell at the gym

How do you choose to spend your weekends?
Either outside with the kids playing in the pool or going for a walk along the beach with the kids with a nice coffee. I love spending time outdoors, especially living in a place with such amazing weather!

Amy Shark

Amy Shark is a born and bred Gold Coaster who has taken the music world by storm over the last few months.

After releasing her debut single Adore in 2016, Amy became a household name going on to claim second place in Triple J’s Hottest 100 and last week, announcing an Australia-wide tour.

We sat down for a chat with Amy to find out how her life has changed and what she loves most about being a Gold Coaster.

It’s been a whirlwind few months for you, how are you feeling about it all?

I’m still Amy, but I get to write and play music full time now so I’m in the clouds!

You grew up on the Gold Coast, how has the culture here shaped your musical career?

The Gold Coast music scene was obviously not as savvy as the major cities but in a way it was kind of nice, there was never any pressure and I loved being able to write a song in my bedroom, then randomly ride to the beach and back. Growing up here was all about warm summers, sleepovers, theme parks, beach hangs and pool parties.

How did you come to be where you are today? Any defining moments?

When I finally took myself seriously, focusing on my sound and perfecting what I wanted people to feel when they listen to my music.

How did it feel to hear your song on the radio for the first time?

I was super proud! I will never forget that night.

What’s it been like trying to break into the music scene?

Well I kind of gave up ‘trying’ to get noticed, and it was the best decision I ever made. I finally channeled all my energy on my music.

If I were an aspiring artist on the Gold Coast, what steps would I take to get where you are?

Be brutally honest with yourself. Do you want to be a musician to be rich and famous or do you want to be a musician because you can’t stop making music? Cause if it’s the first one you’re probs gonna crash.

What do you love most about the Gold Coast lifestyle?

It’s chilled, it’s warm and there’s avocado on every menu.

You’re not a Gold Coast local if you haven’t…. 

Thrown some tins in your bike basket and rode to Burleigh Hill.

Being a local we have to ask for your favourites…

Beach: Currumbin

Restaurant: Romanos

Pub: D’Arcy Arms

Coffee Shop: Society of Florida

Music venue: NightQuarter

Tour dates and tickets available here.

Billy Cross

He’s the Coast’s very own Manpower star turned nightclub owner and entertainment guru and now, local legend Billy Cross is in the business of six-star rooftop bars.

Billy has joined forces with The Star Gold Coast and Hellenika’s Simon Gloftis to bring the Gold Coast a next-level (literally) restaurant and lounge bar with sweeping city views and a sense of sophistication the likes of which our city has never seen.

We chat with Billy about what we can expect from the game changing venue and how he’s gone from King of the glitter strip to co-creator of what he calls the best rooftop bar in Australia.

How long have you been a Gold Coast local?
I’ve lived here for 35 years; I came up quite young so I’m a true Maroons supporter, and I’ve lived here long enough to qualify.

What are your thoughts on the Coast’s growing entertainment scene?
I suppose the thing I love most about being in the entertainment and food industries is seeing how they’ve changed. 10 years ago we had cafes and a restaurant here and there but now when you look at what we have, especially from Broadbeach to Burleigh, there are some absolutely amazing establishments. That’s the part that’s excited me most. 10 years ago you could go to one or two restaurants that were quite good but now there are so many options and so many amazing operators that have really put us on that national level.

What do you love most about living here?
Where I started and created my business was with the Manpower show – Thunder Down Under – which is in Vegas now but also travels the world. I had an opportunity to live and bring my family up in the US but I didn’t because I’ve always loved living on the Coast and everything our city offers. I then got into the nightclub and festival industries, started Summafieldayze and am now involved in events so when you look at those businesses, the Gold Coast is probably one of the best places in the world to work but there’s also a relaxed lifestyle where you can bring up a family. We also have the best beaches in the world and the hinterland, the Coast offers so much. We’re quite spoilt.

Tell us about your latest project at The Star Gold Coast, what can we expect?
It’s going to be a lounge bar, there’ll be a pool and an amazing restaurant. I think Simon and I together are just a dynamic force. In the late 90s I ran the nightclub strip in Surfers when it was powering. I got out of the industry and thought I was done but being asked by The Star to get on board with this investment was so exciting for me. What we’re going to create is not just something the Gold Coast will love but also something that will appeal to people Australia-wide and all over the world. Having a rooftop at The Star Gold Coast is going to be incredible, it’s a serious player and I think it’s going to be the best rooftop bar in Australia. It’s gotten me so excited to get back into the industry. It’ll be a place for the over 25s market to really enjoy. I’ve been involved with it now for the past two years and we’ve needed this on the Coast for a long time. We’ve got some great places but this one is going to be a six-star tower, a really classy place.

How do you think the venue will change the Gold Coast’s entertainment scene?
What it will create is a very high-end restaurant that’s going to have one of the best views on the Gold Coast. As a lounge and bar experience it will have an amazing atmosphere of pure class. You can come up and relax with a beautiful view, enjoy some amazing drinks and some cool old school music. It will have an edgy but classy feel, which I think is something we don’t really have at the moment.

How did you and Simon come up with the idea for something so extravagant?
It was collaboration of course. A big part of the design and the creation was between Simon, myself and The Star. They’ve got an amazing team of people on board and that makes our job easier. It was just everyone putting in their ideas and their two cents to see what it became. For the last five years it’s been something I’ve touched on. For those over 25, after you go to dinner, where do you go? This is going to be a place where of course the restaurant will be busy too, but it will be somewhere you can also go after dinner to have a lounge experience. I feel like this will be the place to go to dress up, enjoy drinks with your friends or partner and have a great time. The bar will be open until 3am so you can go and have a dance after dinner, which is something I think we really need here.

When will we find out the name?
The name will come out in the next couple of weeks; we’ve got a big campaign starting soon. To show people photos just doesn’t do it justice, I can’t wait for people to experience it. 

You’ve done so much throughout your career, what have been the highlights?
I’m quite fortunate that I’ve had such a great career in the entertainment industry. When I built my first club, the Berlin Lounge Bar, back in the late 90s we were one of the first to bring house music to the Gold Coast so that was definitely one of the highlights. Creating Summafieldayze was a highlight because there was only Big Day Out back then. Having a diverse career in entertainment, from running a successful show in Vegas to the nightclub industry to creating one of the biggest festivals in SE QLD and now being involved in what’s going to be one of the best restaurant and lounge bars in Australia, I can’t complain. The highlights keep coming.

Any chance you might want to bring us another local music festival?
We’ve always talked about that. I’m involved with the Hangout Festival called Sand Tunes on Coolangatta Beach which will happen on December 1st and 2nd this year so that’s going to be huge. The guys that run Hangout Festival in Alabama have a great lineup so that will be quite diverse and exciting for the Gold Coast. It will have that Splendour and Falls feel and will be a great tourism push for the southern Gold Coast.

Best piece of life advice you’ve ever received?
Do what you love and love what you do. A lot of people in this world will tell you, you can’t do something but you’ve just got to believe in yourself.
Being a Gold Coast local we have to ask your favourites on the Coast…
Beach: We usually go down to First Ave in Broadbeach but I do love Currumbin, you can’t really beat it
Cafe: BlendLove, Goji Bar in Clear Island Waters and I definitely love Elk Espresso
Restaurant: Definitely Hellenika is my favourite
How does your weekend usually look? My weekend is usually spent with the kids who are right into their basketball at the moment. I’m quite involved in that and the Gold Coast Rollers basketball team, I love my basketball and I love my Titans aswell. I spend a lot of time at Riverstage at the moment too.

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