Darnika “Nika” Platt is a lifelong entrepreneur and Atlanta tastemaker. As a 35-year-old businesswoman, she manages her life as a business owner, wife, mother, pet owner, and socialite. Nika considers herself to be a small-town girl with big city goals. She was born in Benton Harbor, Michigan, and raised in Grand Rapids, Michigan. She left for Atlanta, Georgia in 2004 to expand her life in a new market. While in Atlanta, Nika was not only able to successfully expand her life as an entrepreneur but she also met her husband of six years with whom she shares two children.
During her regularly scheduled visits to the nail salon and day spas, Nika began to converse with some of the men who also frequented the same establishments. These conversations made her realize that men don’t have access to the same facilities that women have, including a one-stop-shop for self-care.
Combining her love for pampering herself with her deep interest in self-care for the mind, body, and soul, she began visualizing the concept of a mancave, which is synonymous with a male-driven space where guys can relax.
In 2017, Nika began the process of building out her vision for what is now known as ManCave Atlanta. ManCave Atlanta was inspired by the television show “Cheers,” where everyone knows your name, and is an upscale men’s spa and event facility located in the Lindbergh neighborhood of Atlanta’s luxurious Buckhead District.
The physical build-out was completed within a year. Among other features, the facility houses multiple suites, including: manicure and pedicure, massage and facial and a private barbershop.
Nika’s vision is now a reality, one that has amazed every person who has entered the space.
Why is your business a business to watch in 2021?
An upscale men’s spa in Atlanta, the unique twist about ManCave Atlanta is that it was created by a woman.
What inspired your to start your business?
Men didn’t have an adequate equivalent to women to have their self-care needs. I decided to create this space combining the concept of a mancave with the television show “Cheers” where everyone knows your name.
How did 2020 change your business? Was it for the better?
It officially opened and people love it.
What lessons did you learn in your business in 2020?
Since 2020 was the year of COVID-19, my biggest lesson was patience. A lot of businesses were affected and I had to choose the right time to officially open.
What kind of impact do you want your business to leave on your client or customer?
I want them to love the space and see if as a place for them to come relax and network.
Do you feel your product or service meets the needs of the market?
Yes, it’s a place that meets the needs of men and the decor reflects sophisticated men.
What hurdles did you personally face in getting ready to open your business and how did you overcome them?
The biggest hurdle was making sure that the build out was done exactly right.
When did you realize entrepreneurship was right for you?
I’ve always been an entrepreneur. I came from a family of entrepreneurs so it’s always been apart of my life.
Why did you choose entrepreneurship?
I didn’t choose entrepreneurship, it’s always been apart of my life since I come from a family of business owners.
What would you say is your most driving motivation to keep doing what you do?
My family. Coming from a family of entrepreneurs to now having my own I now see how they instilled a lot in me and I want to do the same with my kids.
What are you most excited or passionate about? (In both business and life or both)
I’m mostly excited about self care, physically, mentally and spiritually. I enjoy pampering myself and others.
What are the goals you most want to accomplish in your business?
I simply want to provide spa services to the men of Atlanta and provide them with a space they will love.
Did you have any key mentors or people who deeply influenced who you are, what you believe in and what you’re committed to in your work and life? Tell me about them.
My parents and grandparents are entrepreneurs so I learned a lot from them.
What’s next for you in your business/brand? What can readers look forward to from you?
We’re working on bringing more events and activities to ManCave Atlanta, and bring together partnerships that will be beneficial to our clients.