Ever since she was a little girl, Shelly Gutowski has dreamed of opening her own salon.
Growing up, the Mill Creek resident would spend the vast majority of her free time giving her dolls much-needed makeovers.
“I loved cutting my dolls’ hair off,” Gutowski said with a laugh.
Now Gutowski, along with her husband, Mark, is turning her childhood dream into a reality. On Nov. 29, the Gutowskis opened Boutique Out East Salon & Spa in Lakewood Ranch.
Boutique Out East is a full-service salon and spa, which offers a complete listing of hair-styling treatments, including cuts, highlights and Hairlocs extensions, among others. In addition, customers can also come in for permanent makeup, waxing, facials, and manicures and pedicures, among other services.
“This is the only salon that I know of where you can come in for a pedicure and get to use our iPad to (surf) the Internet on,” Mark Gutowski said.
While Shelly Gutowski is both a stylist and the salon’s bookkeeper, Mark Gutowski focuses his attention on promoting the business and making sure its Website and other materials are up to date.
“My wife is what makes this place tick,” Mark Gutowski said.
“We work really well together,” Shelly Gutowski added. “We balance each other out completely. What he can do I can’t do; and what I can do he can’t do.”
On Jan. 15, Boutique Out East will hold its official grand opening celebration from 2-5 p.m. East County residents are invited to come check out the different services the salon has to offer while enjoying live music, cake and other refreshments and gifts.
In addition, the salon will also begin hosting special events, including a Botox party, among various others, the third Wednesday of every month.
“Every (client) that walks through the door — they’re definitely going to get a smile from us,” Mark Gutowski said. “(Our employees) they’re all here to please people. We stand behind everything we do here.”
After studying cosmetology under Robert Morgan in Miami in 1997, Shelly Gutowski began working for the Ocean Reef Club in Key Largo where she worked as a hair stylist for some of the most recognizable faces in entertainment, including Kathie Lee Gifford.
The Gutowskis moved to Port Orange, Fla., before moving to the East County more than two years. Shelly Gutowski soon began looking for places to open her own salon before settling on the Lakewood Ranch location.
The Gutowskis spent the past six months preparing to open their new salon, including building everything from the mirrors and shelving to the cabinets and counters in their garage at home.
Now, the Gutowskis are hoping to bring a fresh new look to East County residents.
“I like to make women feel their best,” Shelly Gutowski said. “When you give a woman a hair blow dry or any other type of service it makes them feel better. I love to make people feel better.
“We want this to be calm, relaxing and family-oriented,” she said. “If you want a granola bar from my stash in the back I’m going to give it to you. That’s just how I am.”
Eventually, the Gutowskis said they would like to expand to the storefront next door as their business begins to grow to be able to offer clients even more services.
Contact Jen Blanco at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Boutique Out East Salon & Spa
Owners: Mark and Shelly Gutowski
Address: 2559 Lakewood Ranch Blvd.
Hours: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday; 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Tuesday; 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Wednesday; 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., Thursday; 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday and Saturday
What makes the business unique: “My wife is what makes this place tick,” Mark Gutowski said.