Years ago as a child living in Romania, Bernadett Alexandrovici thought about someday owning her own spa.
Living in a country where an iron-fisted dictator ruled the land, she also knew it would have to happen somewhere else. It turns out Saskatoon is the home for her dream.
Alexandrovici, who has been in the city since 2008, opened the doors to her spa at the beginning of April and could not be happier.
“This business is for me and I’m so excited,” she says. “It a real personal experience for me, having a business.”
But it’s more than a business for Alexandrovici; she likes to think she has great clients who are more than a business exchange.
“I love my clients and I like to think we are just a big family,” she says.
Alexandrovici prides herself for using all natural, vegan products, such as the Phytomer brand.
“I always wanted to use something on the natural side.”
For nail polish, she also uses Sparitual products, another brand dedicated to natural ingredients.
She says good skin care is very important, including treatments for skin rejuvenation, lifting and anti-wrinkling.
She also uses hard wax in her spa, which not many practitioners are willing to use. She says this provides a nearly pain-free experience for hair removal in sensitive areas.
Of course, she also offers manicures and pedicures and everything in between.
As an owner-operator, she is personally invested to every client and does not have a lot of people working for her carrying out administrative duties, she says. She proudly does everything, from scheduling of appointments to the actual treatments.
“I try to keep my prices down so people can afford to come in and have something done for themselves. People feel better when they take care of themselves.”
A Touch of Europe
Owner: Bernadett Alexandrovici
Address: 205 115th Street East
Hours: Monday, Tuesday, 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.; Wednesday and Thursday, 1 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Friday 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Saturday 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Sunday by appointment
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Julia Darling and Troy Marfleet have opened the doors to a great barber experience at High Noon. John Grainger/Saskatoon StarPhoenix
High Noon Barber
Mirror, mirror, on the wall. Who provides the best haircut of all?
It just might be the High Noon Barber, which primarily focuses on keeping men’s hair and faces looking sharp.
Owner Julia Darling has created a cool, old-school barbershop vibe for her new space with an assortment of old framed photos and mirrors — lots of mirrors. Probably about 20 mirrors, including a large nine-footer that takes up lots of space on one wall.
There is method to her madness. As a good barber knows, mirrors can be used as a barber tool to ensure a proper cut is made.
“The more mirrors in a barbershop, the better,” says Darling.
Another cool focal point in the shop is the barber chair that dates back more than a century to 1908. High Noon’s Troy Marfleet found it in Toronto and gave it a new home in Saskatoon.
But all that is window dressing. Darling said she opened her barbershop a month ago to give men good haircuts and shaves at a reasonable price.
She wants to make the experience for men as easy as possible, so there is an online area for them to make appointments. Good old-fashioned walk-in clients are also welcome at High Noon.
“We don’t have any chemical services — no colours, no perms, anything like that,” she says. “Men aren’t interested in all that.”
Location was a major consideration for her.
“We like the Riversdale community, the vibe here,” says Darling. “There’s not a lot of barbershops in the area and we are trying to find our identity. It’s challenging, but also rewarding.”
Keep your eye open for Nugget, the resident mutt who greets customers as they enter the barbershop.
There’s plenty of parking in the area and access is very easy.
High Noon Barber
Owner: Julia Darling
Address: 112 120 Sonnenschein Way (Saskatoon Farmers Market)
Hours: Closed Sunday and Monday. Open Tuesday and Thursday, 11:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.; Wednesday and Friday, 9:30 a.m.. to 5:30 p.m.; Saturday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
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