MASSENA - Stacy M. Arquiett and Angela R. Frost looked around their recently opened downtown hair salon Thursday afternoon.
There were hardwood floors, high ceilings and a brick wall uncovered from the buildings original 19th century construction. Their old location had 1,000 square feet of space; now they have over 6,000 spread out over two floors in the heart of Massenas business district.
We knew this was going to be beautiful, Ms. Arquiett said. It exceeded our expectations. I couldnt be happier.
Studio 162 opened Monday at 49 Main St., the former home of the Main Street Florist & Gift Shop and Phils Florist and Jackies Gift Shop. The studio had operated out of its namesake Main Street address before that.
The duo have been in business for nearly two years, but needed a larger space to grow in, they said. Each has quadrupled their customer base over the last two years.
Their business is now spread out over a series of rooms. One is for hair styling, while another has several manicure and pedicure stations. Upstairs is a skin care office, a massage room, a photography studio and space for fitness classes.
The Studio 162 staff worked to transform the building and restore some of its original grandeur over the last couple months. Ms. Arquiett and Ms. Frost said they occasionally worked 18 hour days, first tending to customers at 162 Main, then heading downtown to prepare the new location.
The many, many weeks of hard work paid off, Ms. Frost said.
Everything downstairs was taken down to the studs, Ms. Frost said. The bones of the building were very good.
I already forgot what it used to look like, because its so different, she said. Were really, really proud of it. We had high expectations of what we wanted. It came out even better.
Ms. Arquiett and Ms. Frost credited Hollenbeck Construction of Massena and their husbands, Jeff Arquiett and Brendan Frost, with helping to make the downtown location a reality.
Studio 162 adds life to a portion of Main Street in transition. Across the street, side-by-side vacant storefronts stand where the Greater Massena Chamber of Commerce and Center For Sight once were; both moved in recent months.
But Ms. Arquiett and Ms. Frost are excited to be a part of revitalizing that area. They welcome walk-in customers and want to be a business that creates downtown foot traffic. They hope other businesses like an ice cream parlor or pet shop will follow them to build a critical mass of retailers which would bring customers into the business district.
Downtown was the right fit for them, they said. As soon as they set foot in the building earlier this year, they said they pictured what they wanted to do with it.
If we didnt do this, we would have regretted it forever, Ms. Arquiett said.
Studio 162 will hold a grand opening gathering at 6 p.m. Nov. 10.