In June 2015, Laura Rodriguez opened Key Largo Salon & Day Spa to provide quality beauty and day spa services to the Upper Keys. Brittany Richards was there from the get-go, and bought out the salon’s other owner in May 2019. The dynamic duo have been running the show since, through the pandemic and all.
“The quality I wanted to put into a salon made it worth it to do in Key Largo,” Rodriguez said. “Our clients here appreciate the quality. We’re not getting cheap stuff, and our clients appreciate that.”
The salon offers lash extension (natural, hybrid and volume), hair (color, cut, extensions), nails, waxing, microblading and makeup services. Richards emphasized how clients really “get what they’re paying for” in terms of top-notch services that will last and look just as good two weeks after as when they leave the salon.
Beyond high quality products and services, Key Largo Salon also offers a different kind of atmosphere. Rodriguez loves the Keys and the people the islands attract. Richards has been in the Keys her entire life and relishes her relationships with the salon’s clients. Both owners love meeting new people around town and sharing what the spa has to offer.
The clients are a healthy mix of locals, snowbirds who come down during the busy season, and some out-of-towners and tourists. Richards noted that they know their snowbirds very well and look forward to their return every year.
“It’s family here,” Rodriguez emphasized. “When people come in here we know everything about them ‒ about their family and their pets. And they know about us.”
The salon itself is bright and welcoming, with personal touches that Richards and Rodriguez execute themselves.
The pandemic has been the “most challenging” event of their entire business career.
“It’s the only thing that’s been challenging, actually,” said Rodriguez. “Reception has been good since the beginning and steadily grown, COVID aside.”
With a 2.5-month forced shutdown, the owners said the hardest part was not being able to support their clients. They “heard from clients nonstop” and “the phone was ringing 20 to 30 times a day,” said Richards.
“People were going crazy and really needed something to make them feel good,” she continued. “When we finally reopened, the phones blew up. We went down the list for everyone who got canceled in March and April and just started trying to help people.”
Clients were coming in thankful to take care of pandemic-created roots, grown-out manicures, and everything in between.
“They didn’t even care if I was able to do highlights,” said Richards. “‘Just do something. Please just do something to make us feel better,’ they’d tell me. A lot were going back to work and asking us to please make them look okay.”
For the hardworking stylists, happy clients have always been and remain their goal and their motivation. Rodriguez reminisced about when clients have received blow-drys or gotten their nails done, and then their husbands have taken them out to eat because they feel special that day. Richards said that when people leave the salon feeling and looking beautiful, it makes the long hours totally worth it.
“I’ve had people cry (after receiving their services),” she added. “No words can describe that feeling. That puts me on cloud nine for two months and it makes me so happy to know they’re happy when they leave here.”
Key Largo Salon & Day Spa is open weekdays and on Saturday by appointment only. Call 305-451-4343 to book a service.