DYNAMIC DUO: Brooks & Butterfield Ltd. may sound more like a law firm than a day spa, but make no mistake: There’s no stuffy environment at this spa haven. The sumptuous retreat is located in the heart of Pioneer Valley in Northampton, Mass., where the town was craving an upscale day spa. Born from Chameleons School of Esthetics, which Lenore Brooks and Patricia Butterfield opened in 1999 out of frustration for a lack of an esthetics school in western Massachusetts, Brooks & Butterfield Ltd. Day Spa provides a soothing ambience for clients.
“Specifically, downtown Northampton had no true day spa,” explains Butterfield. “There’s a few that incorporate skin and body treatments, but not a spa where there are only skin, body treatments, natural nail services, massage therapy, and makeup. We don’t offer hair or artificial nail services because we chose to provide an environment away from the usual high-energy and sometimes noisy environment that comes with that territory.”
Their plan seems to be working: The two owners recently celebrated their one-year anniversary complete with a gala event where each guest received a soy candle and competed for the grand prize of one full year’s spa treatments.
BLUE OASIS: With a range of pacifying services including everything from the Sarvar Thermal Crystal Manicure to the Aromatherapy Associates Organic Rose Pedicure, this day spa aims to send clients home with a renewed sense of self.
Soon the spa will introduce seasonal manicure and pedicure services “to appeal to the senses on different levels.” Clients will soon enjoy a Gourmet Chocolate Manicure or Pedicure, complete with hot chocolate to sip during the service.
And while service prices are a bit higher compared to other area salons and spas (spa manicures are $25, while specialty manicures are $30 and pedicures can run upwards to $50), the owners feel their services are worth it.
“Our location is convenient and we provide special touches like gourmet chocolates for each guest and a choice of hot or cold beverages on arrival or departure, so our guests are quite comfortable with our prices,” says Butterfield.
The spa is located in a city that is culturally diverse and noted for being a city of the arts. The business is surrounded by eclectic restaurants, clothing and shoe stores, art galleries, and pottery shops, which all make for an interesting mix of clientele.
“Our clientele is predominately women so we serve many local businesswomen, artists, musicians, and since there are five colleges in the area, we see a lot of students and professors as well,” says Brooks.
Thus, the owners aim to market to their fortuitous clientele as well.
“For the holidays, we sent coupon flyers out to 3,000 women who earn $125,000 a year,” explains Butterfield.
The spa even has its own resident jewelry designer. The local artisan, Bonnie Druschel, makes one-of-a-kind jewelry pieces, created especially for the day spa.
“She uses semi-precious stones in shades of the spa’s signature color, blue,” explains Butterfield.
“We chose blue as our theme color because we wanted a feeling of water and sky, which is soothing and calming,” explains Brooks. “We offer a haven were people can de-stress and unwind. In these turbulent times, that counts for a great deal.”
The walls are even faux-painted in swirls of blue and the floor to ceiling windows house transparent blue filmy shades to envelop the area in a sea of calming blue.
Brooks & Butterfield Ltd.’s retail business also includes a line of skin care products that are entirely cruelty-free, with no animal by-products and no animal testing.
“We research our product lines very carefully,” says Brooks. “We want to provide services that are extremely results oriented. We have to have that competitive edge to be above the norm.”
HERSTORIES: Brooks & Butterfield Ltd. is actually Patricia and Lenore’s third business venture — the pair took over the Chameleons School of Hair Design in 1996. And when inquires on esthetic classes starting escalating, Lenore became frustrated having to refer people to the eastern part of the state — the only place where there was an esthetics school.
Shortly after the building next door to the school became vacant, the Chameleons School of Esthetics opened in 1999.
With both schools, Lenore and Patricia were able to handpick the top nail technicians, massage therapists, and estheticians to open Brooks & Butterfield Ltd.
“It’s sometimes tricky trying to find balance and energy to run all three businesses efficiently, but we really have an extremely competent, knowledgeable, skilled, and caring staff that works for the common good of all our clients,” says Butterfield.
The spa boasts an assistant spa manager, spa manager, and spa director to facilitate all working aspects of the spa.
“Since we’re not able to be there every day, having a spa director who you trust implicitly and know is on top of everything is very comforting,” says Butterfield.
While the duo doesn’t have immediate plans to start a fourth business, they are definitely thinking about the future.
“Ultimately we would like to expand, have more space to spread out and possibly have a juice bar, larger reception area, and add more of all that we currently have,” says Brooks.
Salon Name: Brooks & Butterfield Ltd.
Location: Northampton, Mass.
Owners: Lenore Brooks and Patricia Butterfield
Square Footage: 1,400
Years of Ownership: 1
Number of Nail Techs/Employees: 4/15
Specialties: Sarvar Thermal Crystal Manicure & Aromatherapy Associates Organic Rose Pedicure
Other Services: Makeup, waxing, massage, skin care
Compensation Structure: employees
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