WRITTEN BY JANET DAVIES.
Sisters Annie and Emma Woodman opened Bloomfield Beauty Co. to meet growing demand. Girlfriends on a getaway love a spa, and groups like that are rapidly increasing in The County. So are wedding parties, reunions, and the like. Between their day spa services like manicures and massage therapy, and medical spa services like botox, the sisters are offering something unique in The County. No wonder there’s a buzz in Bloomfield!
Annie, who lives in Wellington and is a Nurse Practitioner with the Prince Edward County Family Health Team, began doing medical aesthetics three years ago. She fell in love with helping her clients feel more confident and wanted to make it her full-time job. She approached Emma, who has a background in business, about opening a medical spa in The County; Emma agreed – but only if more classic spa services were on the menu too.
Emma, who is general manager, told us, “When Annie wanted to focus more on these treatments, we began to take the idea more seriously, we made a business plan and started looking at properties in spring 2017.” A lot of how they would develop depended on the location, so they kept their business plan flexible – which took some explaining to the bank. “We kept our options open,” says Emma. “We looked at rental space, too, but when this place came up we jumped on it.”
The Main Street location was perfect, the layout was airy and open and they saw immediately they could accommodate the groups that were a part of their plan. “We are excited to be able to cater to parties. And we absolutely love Bloomfield – it’s a picture-perfect town that’s 10 minutes from everywhere.”
The building was previously a café, and came with all of the equipment. They sold much of the equipment to local restaurants, but when it came to the Italian espresso machine, Emma and Annie couldn’t part with it. “We knew that we wanted to offer the guests of the spa coffee and tea, but we’ve expanded that idea into a full-service café.”
So, what is medical aesthetics? Annie explains, “It’s an umbrella term for services that are usually prescribed by a medical practitioner. I perform cosmetic injectable services, like botox and dermal fillers, and we’re on the brink of expanding into newer, interesting treatments.” Emma carries on, “We currently offer manicures, pedicures, facials, waxing, and massage therapy. We have an experienced Registered Massage Therapist and she’s been very busy since we opened.” She confides, “Annie and I were a bit selfish when deciding which services to offer. We just thought, what things do we really enjoy in a day spa?” Two questions came up again and again when they told people about their plans: Will you have a registered massage therapist? Are you getting a liquor license? The answers are yes and yes.
The sisters explain that getting local tradespeople was a challenge. “We had a great contactor help us build out the concrete countertops throughout the spa and café, but ended up doing a lot of the rest by ourselves,” says Emma. “Luckily our dad is really handy and our partners are pretty handy, too. We managed to pull it together in just 10 weekends. At first it didn’t seem much like there was much to do because the building was in great shape, but customizing the space for a spa involved a lot of work on some finer details.”
Annie and Emma decided to open their spa in early January – a time of the year that is generally quiet for spas. “We wanted to start out in slow season so that we had time to find our bearings and work out any kinks before the spring when things really take off in The County,” says Emma. “That said, we’ve been pretty surprised already by the response so far. It has been especially nice to meet so many neighbours and locals in these first few weeks. It’s given us some time to make connections that we might not have been able to if we waiting to open later in the year.
COLLABORATION & PARTNERSHIPS
In the early weeks, many neighbours dropped by with flowers or treats or just came to introduce themselves and wish Annie and Emma luck. “It was so reassuring, but we were in renovation mode right up to midnight the night before we opened and had very little time to think about partnerships and collaboration. But that is turning into a focus for us now as we meet so many wonderful people every weekend. There are so many amazing businesses, B&Bs, and restaurants opening up these days. We would love to collaborate with other entrepreneurs to offer something unique to our guests.”
Bloomfield Beauty Co. created a stir even before it opened at the beginning of January. “There’s always a buzz in The County when people start something new. There was interest in what would become of this building because it really is in the heart of the village. The big pile of renovation trash was an eye catcher too!” laughs Emma. Their Facebook and Instagram pages kept people informed of progress. “It was really encouraging to see messages from people from The County who were cheering us on throughout the renos.”
As of now, Bloomfield Beauty Co. is open Friday to Monday. Come spring, the sisters plan to incorporate Thursdays to the mix. “We are so excited to add to the charm and experience of The County. It is such a lovely place with lovely people. Opening the doors each morning is the best feeling in the world.”
For startups or businesses looking to expand or re-locate to The County, you can fill out this Business Inquiry Questionnaire, and the Community Development Department will respond in 48 hours.