Two Black women are entering into business to help other Black- and woman-owned businesses thrive.

Aya House

According to Crain’s Detroit  Business, Nina Love and Tequion Brookins are opening Aya House, a 3,000-square-foot co-working space that will be a home to other businesses. The founders also will donate a portion of monthly proceeds to a nonprofit.

The space will be located at 2055 Gratiot Ave in the Eastern Market area of Detroit, MI, and open towards the end of August.

The founders are fueling the venture with their background knowledge as well as their respective experience in hospitality (Love’s The Love Experience) and event production (Brookins’ Tequion Brookins LLC). It will also be supported through a $130,000 investment from the founders in addition to a $40,000 cash grant from Motor City Match.

As for what customers can expect, there will be monthly and annual memberships available. Additionally, private events can be held at the location for a rate of $300 per hour, not including the members discount.

MotorCity Mimosa

Furthermore, restaurants, and bars will be featured in the space, including MotorCity Mimosa, created by Love and Brookins. The restaurant’s concept will allow diners to grab their food from the bar and move around the building, thus not limiting them to one location. Menu items will include jerk chicken wings and a MotorCity Mimosa signature sushi roll, as well as non-alcoholic mimosas.

“The food and beverage component will be non-traditional,” Love said. “We’re still fine-tuning everything. You’ll be able to co-work, enjoy the food and move about the space.”

She also mentioned, “You can’t find any food in Detroit on Monday, so we wanted to add that in as a special offering. The pop-ups are gonna be key, too. Supporting younger chefs is important — younger folks who want to break into the space. It’s not easy to do.”

Supporting Small Businesses

The appeal of Aya House will lie not just in its community offerings but also in its support for Black- and woman-owned businesses as there will be vendor partner programs available to help entrepreneurs increase their visibility in the community.

“A lot of times people can feel defeated as entrepreneurs,” Love said. “People need a space where they can build relationships, partnerships, and a space to find resources when they don’t have their own. We see Aya House as cutting out the middle man, cutting out some of the growing pains. I was (in Detroit) almost two years before I found out how to push my business to the next level. (Brookins) and I have a lot of experience at this point to collectively get other people to that next level.”

Already, there are 200 clients lined up to take root at the new space.

“(Aya House) is all-inclusive for the upwardly mobile person who wants to be active in their community, and who wants to be around people creating dope things. You can be inspired by that,” Love expressed to Crain’s Detroit Business.