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Any hotel lobby bar with a Mary Pickford on the cocktail list is OK by us. That is one of the $12 offerings at the Normandy Kitchen & Bar, under the Best Western Plus brand. We were told Best Western Plus was a must to check out, and when we visited the newly renovated place, it did not disappoint.

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Kalpana, the third youngest of four Patel sisters who are all Planet Fitness franchisees, was super stressed on “expiration date” at her big-box gym in Vancouver, Washington. That's when you send out mailers with an expiration date, and on that day in particular the gyms have a lot of sign-ups.

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The old refrain is never work with family and never borrow from friends. But for those stubborn folks who opt to ignore that advice, it's quite possible to thrive at work and home—it just takes a little effort.

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In December, Kyanna Isaacson, age 26, opened her first Jersey Mike's store as a majority owner, a shop she was awarded by the chain's founder in 2016, right after she was named manager of the year at the chain's annual conference.

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Fitlife Foods founder David Osterweil spent six years trying to get his freshly prepared meals retail concept ready to franchise—and the effort included a whole lot of math.

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The first franchisee of DMK Burger Bar, Carolyn Michael in Chicago, is a big fan of the food created by Chef Michael Kornick, a five-time James Beard award nominee with a pedigree in fine dining.

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I grew up in New York City, the daughter of Hungarian immigrants who escaped the communist regime in Hungary in 1956. My mom was 9. I was raised by Holocaust survivors, so our life was work, work, work. My dad was not in the picture. My family left a lot behind. My brother is an actor. We lived in Queens.

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Travels to Hawaii inspired Joann Chung and husband Derek to open Pokeatery, a counter-service restaurant where customers create their own version of poké bowls (pronounced po-kay), the raw fish salad commonly made with ahi tuna. Time-strapped lunch customers are the target, Chung says, and she notes Pokeatery is different from other poké concepts because “we're seeing a lot of the concepts expanding their menus to more general Japanese, but we've chosen to stick to poké. We want to do our one thing really well.”