Trips to Tucson for a familiar recreation activity turned into a business venture for one Sierra Vista resident.
JD Mack opened the doors to Chill Factor Hookah & Cigar Lounge, 833 E. Fry Blvd., on Jan. 10 to provide an “alternative” activity for people to do in town. Mack said living in Germany for 14 years is how the recreation became habitual for him and, after moving to Sierra Vista in June 2018, he would travel to Tucson to do something he enjoyed. While at hookah lounges in Tucson, Mack said he would often encounter other people from Sierra Vista in the lounges.
“I was looking for something for the mature crowd,” he said. “I’m hoping (Chill Factor) becomes a premium alternative for people to hang out.”
Chill Factor Hookah and Cigar Lounge offers some off the best shisha available on the market. Mack has multiple brands with different flavors that range from fruity to coffee to desserts and more.
“Everybody’s taste buds are different,” Mack said.
Most of the shisha Mack has contains .005 percent nicotine. However, he has a blend that is made of tea leaves, so it doesn’t contain any nicotine, and he also has some with a larger amount of nicotine in it. Shisha contains nicotine but does not have chemicals added to it like cigarettes do.
One hookah, with up to three flavors, costs $22 and can have multiple hoses attached to it. Mack offers a happy hour every day from 6 to 7 p.m. Mack says the flavors can last from an hour and half to and hour and 45 minutes.
“There’s no mind-altering effects of smoking hookah,” Mack said.
Mack, who works as a contractor for the Department of Defense, served in the military for 22 years and hopes the lounge becomes sustainable so he can leave his contractor job and be a full-time business owner.
“Working for yourself is different,” Mack said. “It’s creating your own destiny.”
Patrons can purchase cigars and shisha to take home if they do not want to smoke them in the lounge. Mack is the sole distributor in Arizona for Eternal Smoke, one of the top three shisha products on the market. Chill Factor Hookah and Cigar also has televisions, dart boards, cards and dominos for attendees to enjoy.
Although the doors are open and the space is filled with custom furniture, Mack is still working on adding to the business with the hope of offering more. He is having a patio put in the back of the building as a space for cigar smoking and hanging out. Mack is also working on obtaining a liquor license so Chill Factor can be a full-service lounge. Currently, the lounge is open
“We want to be like Cheers, where everybody knows your name,” Mack said.