Hard Work, Professionalism Makes Dream Come True

Hard work, professionalism makes dream come true


Sveta Yakubovich had a dream-­‐ of being independent, doing what she loved to do and giving her family a better quality of life. This dream brought her to the United States.


As a Russian immigrant, Yakubovich faced many challenges including not speaking English. But her tenacity, focus and a lot of elbow grease-­ literally- ­enabled her to grab hold of her dream and today she is the owner of one of Wichita’s leading massage therapy businesses.


Sveta’s Body Therapy in the Bradley Fair Shopping Center, caters to a high-profile client list that includes doctors, bank presidents, developers, stockbrokers and other professionals.


“Nothing is impossible,” said Yakubovich, who in 1993 immigrated to the United States with her husband, Simon, a massage therapist at the Wichita Country Club, her then infant son, Misha, her mother, and her grandfather. She was 22.


Trained in massage therapy and working as a physical education teacher in Gorky, Russia, Yakubovich was earning the American equivalent of about $2 a month. She was determined to give her family a better way of life in the United States and came to Wichita because she had relatives here.


She spoke no English and was unsure what direction to take, but she soon earned her massage therapy certification and began working at The Wichita Racquet Club in February 1994. She worked there for six years, earning a reputation for professionalism and quality service and then opened her own business, Sveta’s Body Therapy, in 2000. In December, 2002, she opened a second location in the Genesis Health Club at 1551 N. Rock Rd., previously the Wichita Racquet Club.


Both locations offer therapeutic massage services including Swedish, deep tissue massage, reflexology, body dynamics and pregnancy, aroma therapy massage, acupuncture and acupressure, deep-­heat stone therapy, and parafango wraps. Sveta’s also offers facials, natural nails, waxing and other body treatments but massage therapy, Yakubovich said, is the core of her business.


“People come to me all stressed and in pain,” she said. “One hour later I am sending a whole new person out into the world.”


Yakubovich said she’s grateful to be independent and to be helping other people, including her 14 employees, achieve their potential. She does not define success by dollars in the bank or numbers through her doors, but rather the peace that comes from doing what she enjoys and providing a quality service to others.


“I do what I love,” she said. “I can provide other people possibilities to do what they love to do.”


Yakubovich’s other love is her family and being a mother to Misha, now 11, and Masha, a daughter who will turn 2 this month.


“I have so many things in my life,” she said. “My greatest challenge is to try and balance them all. To be the best mom, the best masseuse, the best wife I can be.”


“I’ve been successful because of all the great people I’ve met here in America,” Yakubovich said. That list includes developer George Laham, Michael Michaelis of Emprise Bank, Rick Mae, who gave her a start at The Wichita Racquet Club, many friends and, of course, her mother and husband.


“I believe that behind every successful person there is a family supporting them,” she said.


Yakubovich earned diplomas of acupuncture from the Kansas College of Chinese Medicine and the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine.

The Wichita Eagle

Sveta’s Body Therapy Opens Second Branch

Sveta’s Body Therapy opens second branch

Sveta Yakubovich and her family arrived in the United States from Russia nine years ago with $500.

Now she is adding a second location of her massage business, Sveta’s Body Therapy, inside the Genesis Health Club at 1551 N. Rock Road.

It has been a long trip, and she has been grateful for the reception she has received here.

“I’ve been successful because of all the great people I’ve met here in America.” Trained as a teacher, she moved from Gorky with her husband, a 6“ month“

old son, her mother, and her grandfather in 1993. They were able to emigrate easily because the Russian government had a special program to allow Jews to leave.

Hundreds of thousands left for Israel and the United States.]

She and her family came to Wichita because she had an aunt and uncle here. She and her husband had also trained as massage therapists in Russia and got work doing that. She worked at the Wichita Racquet Club. Bradley Fair developer George Laham encouraged her to open her own place, which she did two years ago.

And now, she is opening back up at the Racquet Club building, which Genesis bought in 2001.

She said she really likes what she does.

“They come in all full of stress, and in one hour they are a completely different person“ and they pay me for it,” she said.

Sveta’s Body Therapy is open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday. The number at the new location is 634“ 3818.

Sveta’s Body Therapy to Expand to North Rock Road Genesis Club

Sveta’s Body Therapy to expand to North Rock Road Genesis club Wichita Business Journal 10/18/02


Massage therapist Sveta Yakubovich, owner of Sveta’s Body Therapy in the Bradley Fair shopping center, plans to open a second location I the Genesis Health Club at 1551 N. Rock Road in December.


A growing demand for her services and the opportunity to work with the clients at Genesis prompted her decision to expand, says Yakubovich, who came to the United States from Russia with her mother, her husband and her son in 1993.


It will be a sort of homecoming for Yakubovich, who worked at the Wichita Racquet Club as a massage therapist form 1994 until 2000.


Yakubovich say Genesis owner Rodney Steven II has been talking to her about expanding to his facility, which has been undergoing a $3 million renovation, for the past few months.


Yakubovich will rent three rooms at Genesis, and will have an area for her own receptionist. Yakubovich says she will probably add three new massage therapists to work at Genesis. She will also take appointments for herself at the health club, although her primary location will remain Bradley Fair.


Yakubovich, who is seven months pregnant, also says she will probably scale back her work for a time after the couple’s second child is born. She says one advantage of the Genesis location, for both Yakubovich and her clients, is the onJ site nursery.


Steven says he wanted Yakubovich to be part of his facility because “she’s the best.”


“I think she’s got the best reputation in town. She’s successful, and she’s already

worked with this clientele,” Steven says.


The massage therapy business has been good to 31­‐year old Yakubovich. Her business, which is 2 years old this month, has increased about 30 percent a years, she says.


Since opening, Yakubovich has expanded Sveta’s to offer facials, natural nails, waxing and other body treatments. Yakubovich says in addition to massage therapy, the Genesis location will include deep-­‐heat stone therapy and parafango wraps.


Yakubovich and one of her employees, Altin Miraka, have recently earned diplomas of acupuncture from the Kansas College of Chinese Medicine and passed their acupuncture tests from the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine. Acupuncture is offered at Sveta’s.


Massage therapy, she says, remains the core of her business, which employs 12 people.


Yakubovich also has recently added makeovers to her business, and will soon carry Motives, and American line of makeup.

“I want to keep my business more about health, with more of the natural stuff,” Yakubovich says.


Wichita cardiologist Dr. Joseph Galichia, who formerly owned The Racquet Club and has been a client of Yakubovich’s since she came to Wichita says he encouraged her to expand her business to Genesis.


“I think she has a lot of talent, energy and good managerial skills – She’s a superb individual who’s well known in the business community. Other clients include banker Michael Michaelis and developer George Laham, as well as spouses of many Wichita business leaders.


Yakubovich credits Laham, the developer of the Bradley Fair shopping center and her landlord, with helping her company become successful.


“George Laham has helped me with business more than anybody else,” Yakubovich says. “He’s given me great business advice.”


Sveta’s Body Therapy

“Sveta’s Body Therapy offers Therapeutic Massage, which is great for stress relief and general wellness, Acupuncture, Facials, Waxing and Sauna. It is for everyone young and old alike; some clients even bring their kids. I would like to see everyone enjoy what we have to offer,” says Sveta Yakubovich owner of Sveta’s Body Therapy.

Sveta, an immigrant from Russia, came to the United States in 1993 with her mother, husband and one child. Yakubovich went to school in Gorky, Russia, to learn massage and to be a physical education teacher. She has since then earned her massage therapy certifications and is currently going to the Kansas School of Chinese Medicine where she is studying acupuncture and Chinese medicine.

Her desire for a better life for her and her family is what brought Sveta to the United States. Sveta’s Body Therapy opened in October of 2000. Her personal drive, hard work and effort is what is making “Sveta’s Body Therapy” very successful. Client satisfaction is what keeps everyone coming back to Sveta’s Body Therapy. Sveta’s clientele ranges from housewives to doctors to businessmen.

Sveta’s Body Therapy also offers Gift Certificates and a wide assortment of products to choose from. Candles, lotions, massage oils, or even a Tara neck and eye pillow.

An average massage session can range from 15 minutes for a chair massage to 90 minutes for a thorough spa massage. And Sveta’s staff also includes Dr. Allen Fitzner, an acupuncturist who has practiced for more than 31 years.

Sveta’s Body Therapy is located at 2141 North Bradley Fair Parkway, Suite #105 or you can call and ask about arranging an onsite business appointment at (316) 630c 0400. Business hours are Monday thru Friday 9:00 am to 8:00 pm, Saturday 8:30 am to 5:00 pm, and Sunday 9:00 am to 1:00 pm.

Call Sveta today and give your body the therapy it needs.

Sveta’s Body Therapy a Dream Come True For Russian Transplant Sveta Yakubovich

A Russian masseur who came to Wichita with only $500 in her pocket has built an elite clientele among local business leaders including developer George Laham and banker Michael Michaelis.

Only seven years after immigrating to the United States from Russia, 29-­year­old Sveta Yakubovich is opening Sveta’s Body Therapy, offering therapeutic massage and acupuncture at 2141 N. Bradley Fair Parkway in Bradley Fair.

It’s a proud moment for a woman who has developed into one of the best-­‐ connected women in Wichita -­ catering to a high­‐profile client list that includes doctors, bank presidents, developers, stockbrokers and other high‐level professionals.

Many visit as often as once a week to have their kinks, cramps and knots worked out by Yakubovich’s powerful hands.

Getting hooked

On a Sunday morning Yakubovich is confirming an afternoon appointment with developer George Laham while Emprise Bank chairman Michael Michaelis waits in a chair nearby. A bundle of energy, Yakubovich greets the friends who have stopped in to wish her well at her new location while answering the ringing phone in her distinct Russian accent.

Michaelis, who says he first met Yakubovich when she was offering chair massages at Green Acres health food store several years ago, says he had never had a massage -­ and never thought he would.

But as his wife was shopping, Michaelis decided to give Yakubovich’s chair massage a try.

“I play squash at the Wichita Racquet Club, and soon Sveta convinced me to try a (full) massage,” says Michaelis, who now has a weekly appointment with Yakubovich. “I was hooked.”

Trained in Russia

The opening of her business is a dream­‐come­‐true for Yakubovich, who came to Wichita in 1993 with her mother, her husband, Simon (a massage therapist at the Wichita Country Club), her then‐infant son, Misha, and only $500 in her pocket.

Trained in massage and as a physical education teacher in Gorky, Russia, Yakubovich was earning the American equivalent of about two dollars a month and was determined to offer her family a better way of life in the United States.

“I knew that in Russia to make money you either had to be a genius or do something illegal,” says Yakubovich. “In America, you can have anything you want. There is more opportunity here.”

Speaking no English and unsure of what direction to take, Yakubovich soon earned her massage therapy certifications and began working at Mae-­ssage, a salon at the Wichita Racquet Club in February 1994, where she worked for six years. Hired by Mae-­ssage owner Rick Mae, Yakubovich says he watched her grow from a “little Russian girl” into a woman now ready to launch her own business.

“I am grateful to Rick for giving me the opportunity to start my career here, and to meet the people who have become my clients and friends,” says Yakubovich.

George Laham has been a client and friend of Yakubovich for about five years, and says he has known for some time her interest in opening her own salon. Her level of service, professionalism and tremendous client base were right for Bradley Fair, he says. “Sveta is an excellent massage therapist. She’s energetic, accommodating, and has a tremendous work ethic,” says Laham. “In my business of developing buildings for new businesses, it’s most exciting and rewarding when you are involved with someone like Sveta, considering her background, drive to succeed and love for capitalism.”

American success story

Dr. Ken Jansson, an orthopedic surgeon with Advanced Orthopedic Associates and medical director for Via Christi’s Sports Medicine services, remembers the first day he met Yakubovich.

“The first time I saw her she didn’t even speak English,” says Jansson. “She is the American success story. She has done it the old-­fashioned way, with a lot of hard work and good effort.”

Although as a doctor Jansson doesn’t generally make referrals for massage services, he says it is good for providing stress relief and general wellness.

“I think people with milder problems, general aches and pains, and flexibility problems can do well with massage,” says Jansson.

Yakubovich says she loves her work because she is able to bring relief to overstressed bodies. Massage services offered include Swedish; back, shoulder and neck; deep tissue massage; reflexology; body dynamics and pregnancy, as well as acupuncture and acupressure.

Massage sessions generally are one hour, but will range from 15 minutes for a chair massage to 90 minutes for a thorough spa massage. The facility is also equipped with a shower and dry sauna. Yakubovich’s staff of five therapists includes Dr. Allen Fitzner, an acupuncturist who has practiced for more than 31 years.

Yakubovich is also a student at the Kansas School of Chinese Medicine, where she is studying acupuncture and Chinese medicine. Once a competitive swimmer in Russia, she believes in natural remedies to heal the body’s ailments and takes no medications. Yakubovich even foregoes anesthetics at the dentist’s office, and has had a root canal without benefit of pain blockers.

“There are some problems you cannot treat with massage, but you can treat with herbs and acupuncture,” says Yakubovich.


Wichita Business Journal

Sveta’s Body Therapy Scheduled to Open in Bradley Fair

Shopping center expansion now 50 percent leased

Pier 1 Imports, an international retailer offering distinct, casual home furnishings from more than 50 countries, will open a third Wichita location in the spring of 2001 in the Bradley Fair shopping center at 21st Street and Rock Road.

The 10,000­‐square‐foot store will be located next to the Bed Bath & Beyond in the new Bradley Fair South Parkway expansion, said Melissa Cohlmia, spokeswoman for Laham Development Co., the developer of Bradley Fair.

The announcement of Pier 1 as a new tenant brings the 85,000‐square­‐foot South Parkway expansion to more than 50 percent leased.

“Pier 1 will complement the lifestyle center’s already dynamic mix and enhance Bradley Fair as a regional destination,” said Cohlmia. “We give careful consideration to the centers offerings and ambiance. From gifts and apparel to home furnishings, personal products and a diversity of food and dining concepts, Bradley Fair is a complete shopping experience that is relaxed and appealing.”


$1.1 billion in sales

Pier 1, an international retailer headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas, has more than 800 stores. The publicly owned company had more than $1.1 billion in sales in 1999. According to the company, the typical Pier 1 customer is a successful, educated, working woman between the ages of 18 and 49.

Opening at the center in early October will be Sveta’s Body Therapy. Owned by Sveta Yakubovich, the shop will be located just south of 21st Street facing Bradley Fair Parkway.

Sveta’s Body Therapy will offer therapeutic massage, acupuncture, facials and a sauna. Services will be available by appointment from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday through Friday, and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday.


Bradley Fair Shopping Center

Address: 21st Street and Rock Road. Wichita, Kan. 67226. Developer: Laham Development Co.

Phone: (316) 262‐6400