You might assume that non-essential expenditures such as spa and beauty treatments would be nixed during tough economic times; however that’s not the case at Celestine Salon and Spa, said manager Deb Pfeiffer.
“Most people don’t just stop taking care of themselves during tough times,” said Pfeiffer, noting that clients might instead lengthen the time between visits. “I think clients need to especially keep up their morale.”
Pfieffer also believes that owner Jennifer Hynes created an atmosphere that facilitates customer retention.
“She wanted to achieve the same quality found in an upscale salon without the hype,” said Pfeiffer, who revealed that the staff’s mission is making clients feel “like they are coming home.”
Pfieffer and massage therapist Diane Johnson explained the camaraderie between the five stylists, two massage therapists, esthetician and nail technician.
“We’re like a family here,” said Johnson, admitting that her commute from Plainfield isn’t always convenient. “I wouldn’t work anywhere else.”
Pfeiffer and receptionist Peg Collins agree that not only is there a strong connection among employees but with their clients in the community as well. The staff has participated in many fundraisers and auctions for local schools, Locks for Love, The Children’s Miracle Network, women’s shelters and animal shelters.
“It's a fun place to work,” Collins said.
“We even get invited to our clients’ special occasions-weddings, birthdays, graduations and christenings,” Pfeiffer added.
Pfeiffer described evenings when patrons have invited the staff out after work, concluding “it’s like they want to continue that good feeling.”
Client Mary Tandaric said she agreed with that assessment. She goes to great lengths to prove her loyalty—after moving to Buffalo Grove, she drives almost 40 miles to Darien—and thinks it’s worth it.
“Everyone is so friendly and accommodating,” Tandaric said. “I like that this is a full-service, very professional salon.”
Among the salon’s approximately 800 clients, a man that transferred to Denver even schedules his appointments during business trips to Chicago.
Johnson, a physical therapist assistant who’s also certified in massage, said she feels privileged to get to know customers in a more intimate way.
“Sometimes a massage is such an emotional and physical release for people,” said Johnson, noting that stressful circumstances such as divorce, chronic pain or extended illnesses such as cancer bring another dimension to the table.
A technique she uses for dissipating any anxiety over a first time massage is to make sure the client knows they’re the boss.
“This is the client’s time and they should direct the process,” Johnson said.
Celestine offers “mini services” for $10 every Tuesday from 5 - 8 p.m. Walk-ins can enjoy wine and hors d’oeuvres while experiencing blow-drying classes, facial waxing, chair massage, polish changes and more.