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Sugardaddy’s No. 2 salon in Best of Western Wash. poll

Sugardaddy’s Salon on Bay Street placed second in an online poll by KING5 TV’s Evening Magazine to choose the best salon in Western Washington.

“There were 670 salons nominated,” James Harris, one of the salon’s co-owners said, “and for us to get number two, right under Gene Juarez — and there are seven of them — we’re kind of proud of that.”

Sugardaddy’s was named after an Arizona bar, Harris said, and although it’s changed in many ways through the years, it’s always been about art.

“I was down visiting one of my clients who lives in Scottsdale, took me out to a bar called Sugardaddy’s,” Harris said, “It made the House of Blues look tired.”

Harris took the name, and also the idea of including local musicians in the business.

“I really built it on the theme of local music like Hell’s Belles,” he said. “We have quarterly concerts with the local talent.”

Local talent that has performed at Sugardaddy’s includes Jamie Nova, the lead singer for Hell’s Belles, and James Hunnicutt.

Sugardaddy’s also includes handmade jewelry and a revolving selection of art for sale.

The salon doesn’t charge commission on the artwork when it sells.

“We really try to support the local artists,” Harris said. “If it wasn’t for local art, life would suck.”

The arrangement works out for both types of artist.

“It’s tremendous for the art of doing hair and the music scene as well,” Harris said.

Tim Waibel, who runs the salon with Harris and formerly owned Simon August Fine Catering in Bremerton and Augustino’s Restaurant, says that the art aspect of the business drew him to it.

“I came along five years ago, and — having come from restaurants and the service industry — just fell in love with that aspect,” Waibel said. “I love managing those kinds of people and doing that kind of business.”

Waibel and Harris started working together when Sugardaddy’s was at its former location, a two-seat shop at the current location of Essence of Thymes Catering.

Now their business is a 10-station salon across the street, staffed by 13 artists that range in skill level and cost.

Each hair stylists’s skill levels are ranked ranging from 1 to 6, and the price for their services — based on their rank — ranges from $20 to $85.

“We customize it to your pocketbook and your needs,” Harris said.

Harris formerly worked as an instructor at Gene Juarez Salons and Spas, and trains the Sugardaddy’s employees in a one-year program, similar to the program at Gene Juarez.

The program is currently full, he said, and has a waiting list.

“We require that you work here for 10 months after your education, and if you work those 10 months, that’s paid off,” Waibel said.

Sugardaddy’s commissions nine employees, and leases space to four more.

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