SPECIAL TO OCALA STYLE
It’s often said that necessity is the mother of invention. In this particular case, a frustrating situation evolved into a dream come true with far-reaching benefits.
When Shannon Gagnon was searching for a wedding gown during early 2005, she encountered two basic scenarios. Shops either had a large selection, but poor customer service, or good service, but a very small choice of gowns.
After one particularly disappointing gown-shopping venture, Shannon relayed her experiences to her fiancé, David Gagnon.
“We’ll just open our own shop,” David responded.
What began as a thought to solve their dilemma soon blossomed into something much greater. The couple wanted to create a unique bridal shop where brides could not only find the gown of their dreams, but also enjoy all the amenities of a first-class spa and salon.
“We came up with the concept on February 7 and rented the facility in mid-April,” says Shannon. “We did a lot of the physical work ourselves before the contractors came in. Our first store order was 150 gowns, including my own.”
When it comes to understanding the needs and desires of couples preparing for their wedding day, who better than a couple who has recently had that very same experience? David and Shannon enjoyed the wedding of their dreams on November 5, 2005. Now, they are dedicated to helping their customers find the right gown and the perfect “look” for that truly special day.
Because the entire concept of Your Day Bridal & Spa was born out of the desire for exceptional customer service, David and Shannon have spared no effort in making their customers feel comfortable and at ease.
The first hint of this is the chic café at the front of the store where customers find espresso, cappuccino, coffee, tea, wine, and soda. The tempting aroma of freshly baked cookies adds to the friendly setting. All beverages and snacks are complimentary to clients.
True to their commitment, David and Shannon have stocked the bridal section with a stunning array of gowns by the industry’s leading designers. Demetrios, Justin Alexander, Sincerity, Private Label by G, Aurora, Katherine La Croix, Landa, Moonlight, and Mori Lee are all represented. There are over 600 gowns in stock at all times, in all sizes.
In addition to this remarkable inventory by prominent designers, Your Day also offers its own line, Lady Shannon Originals.
“Our seamstress, April, has been in the bridal industry for 15 years and came to us from Atlanta,” remarks Shannon. “She’s incredible. She can take your ideas and make them a reality.”
Hardly limited to bridal gowns, April also makes bridesmaid, prom, and special-occasion dresses. Should an off-the-rack gown require alterations for the perfect fit, April has this covered, too. Grooms and their party can even rent tuxes here, making it a true one-stop bridal attire shopping experience.
Spacious dressing rooms and a large viewing area with floor-to-ceiling mirrors offer an excellent setting for trying on gowns. Comfortable chairs allow friends and family members to settle back and be part of the selection process.
Because David and Shannon are familiar with many of the wedding vendors in the area, they can offer suggestions on finding a photographer, a florist, and a bakery. Although they don’t offer wedding planning services, they are happy to make their conference room available for meetings with vendors to discuss your wedding.
While a substantial portion of the shop is devoted to bridal attire, there is plenty of room dedicated to salon and spa services as well. Twenty staff members are on hand to cater to customers’ needs and you needn’t be a bride, or even a woman, to take advantage of the many treatments offered daily. Men also find an assortment of experiences designed especially for them, from sports massages and haircuts to scalp treatments and grooming pedicures.
Whether you’re looking for a stylish new haircut, a relaxing massage, or soothing spa treatments, you’ll find these and much more at Your Day Bridal & Spa. Recognizing the popularity of spa amenities, David and Shannon have created a number of tempting spa packages. You can always enjoy an individual treatment, but it’s a real treat to indulge in a variety of them in one day. The most luxurious package is the “Queen (or King) for a Day,” which lasts all day and includes eight different spa treatments, brunch, and even pick-up and drop off in a stretch limousine. You’re guaranteed to feel like royalty!
If an all-day indulgence won’t fit your schedule, choose from a delightful array of other spa packages with a variety of treatments lasting from two to six hours, or somewhere in between. Any of these packages make a memorable gift for someone special.
Your Day Bridal & Spa has its own Hydrotone Thermal III spa machine.
“It’s the only one within a 360-mile radius,” notes David. “We can do hydrotherapy, steam therapy, and light therapy. The great thing about the Hydrotone is that you can combine it with other treatments, such as mud and seaweed wraps. It’s great for utter relaxation.”
Speaking of relaxation, three therapists offer an assortment of massage techniques including Swedish, sports, deep tissue, Reiki, reflexology, and hot stone. The sauna and steam bath offer still more ways to unwind and let your stress melt away.
Facials are a fabulous way to free your mind of worries and walk out with a glowing complexion. With a dozen different types of facials from which to choose, you can feel confident in relying on your esthetician to pinpoint what your skin needs. From stress-relieving and anti-aging to the popular new Revitalight facial, all skin conditions can be addressed.
During a recent facial, esthetician Mandi Hale describes each phase of the treatment as she applies various creams, masks, and moisturizers. The subdued lighting, heated reclining chair, and soothing background music make this a relaxing hour indeed.
“Most of the products we use in our facials are available for purchase,” Mandy explains, adding that she uses them herself. “We have more and more men coming in for facials, too.”
Appointments are encouraged if you want to ensure availability of a particular therapist or treatment at a certain time, but impulse walk-ins are always welcome. If you are part of a large group, such as a bridal party, David and Shannon are happy to accommodate any special needs.
“David and Shannon and all the girls did a fantastic job for our daughter Courtney’s wedding to TJ McLaughlin,” says Barbara Driscoll, the bride’s mother. “Everyone felt special and pampered. They were excellent at keeping everyone calm and cool, especially the mother-of-the-bride!”
Your Day Bridal & Spa
2701 S.W. College Road, Suite 303, Ocala
Other times by appointment.