Great Northern Builders Luxury Remodel of The Salon

Great Northern Builders Luxury Remodel of The Salon

Most people have grand visions for the business they would like to one day open, but few take the chance and really go for it. A little over one year ago, Jessica Johnson and her husband, Justin Johnson, decided to bring their dream of opening The Salon, a high end salon in Woodbury, Minnesota a reality. With 15+ years of experience in the industry, Jessica didn’t want to just create another cookie cutter salon in town. So they consulted with Great Northern Builders (GNB) when they decided to make their dream a reality.

“I wanted to create a progressive, upscale, boutique salon located in the heart of Woodbury that creates a unique client experience. An experience that is unforgettable and includes every detail to provide the utmost relaxation, renewal, and restored balance,” says Jessica Johnson, co-founder of The Salon.

1Inspired by Great Northern Builder’s work, Jessica and Justin met with Chris Biljan, founder of Great Northern Builders, last May to review the design and build of the new space that coincided with their vision of highlighting every detail to deliver a memorable customer experience. The space selected for The Salon was originally an orthodontic space, which needed to be gutted and completely redesigned.

“We chose Great Northern Builders to build The Salon after seeing the unique design work they’ve completed. They are very well known for their amazing reputation in craftsmanship. Their Atmosfere project in Minneapolis initially peaked our interest. It exudes a rustic yet chic look, integrates a beautiful usage of reclaimed barn wood and materials, and an elegant display of lighting and attention to detail.
Their team met with us several times prior to starting the project after we bought the space. They were right on point with listening to our ideas, had great suggestions on how to design and implement on our vision. They were able to really articulate our vision and were with us every step of the way in this build or renovation,” said Johnson.

Jessica and Justin knew they wanted their 2,300 square ft. space to have a rustic and modern feel that emanates comfort and luxury. Every detail of The Salon was crafted with this in mind. Great Northern Builders articulated that vision by determining type of reclaimed wood, placement, and made sure everywhere a client looked, there was something new to see.


One of the most unique aspects of The Salon is the re-inspired use of reclaimed wood throughout the salon. Great Northern Builders applied an original artistic display featuring the reclaimed wood in a vertical display versus the more commonly used horizontal display. Multiple depths and widths of the wood had to be milled in order to achieve this layered look. Great Northern Builders started with three different pre-selected widths and 3 varied thicknesses. Each piece was individually ripped, cut, and fitted to get the very unique, detailed, and layered look. The vertical application of the reclaimed wood is a design aspect that Great Northern Builders implemented to allow the customer to flow through the salon without realizing they are doing it, and redirects the eye to details such as ceiling height and ornate light fixtures. The 3-sided fireplace encased in the vertical reclaimed wood adds a warm and cozy touch.


“Working with Great Northern Builders and the finishing touches they implemented really helped us create that warm feeling, the unique experience from start to finish for our clients. The reclaimed wood feel was completely different in a vertical application vs. horizontal. It was such an artistic application, it wasn’t something they just slapped on the wall,” says Johnson.

Windows encompass 75% of the wall area on the south side, allowing natural lighting to cascade across the space, and is balanced by Minardi custom LED lighting that allows energy savings. The eco lighting has a number of benefits for both employees and customers, and provides the natural light balance to see the intricacies of the hair more clearly, while providing a relaxing environment to clients while they are in The Salon. The lighting is tied together by three breathtaking chandeliers to add a touch of luxury to the space.

The Salon includes 14 chairs and a full shampoo wall, relaxed lighting, soothing music, and even luxury faux fur blankets from Restoration Hardware with lumbar pillows to get cozy in as the customer is being shampooed. Clients also see the cozy fireplace while they’re being shampooed.

To the left of the shampoo area holds a treatment room for services such as massages and facials. In line with The Salon founders vision of a spectacular experience for clients, Great Northern Builders applied a carefully constructed sound barrier to this space by adding a special sound board in place of standard drywall or sheet rock. Mineral wool was added between the studs for additional soundproofing.

Between the shampoo space and treatment room lives a 9’ by 4’ wide sliding barn door hand selected by Great Northern Builders and the Johnsons. The door has a steampunk style and is a unique focal point upon entry, while also serving to separate the salon area from employee area. This door blocks the color wall, and can slide back and forth to display or encase this wall. This feature adds an unrivaled level of depth, dimension, and convention to the entire space.

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Finishing touches to The Salon include polished concrete floors, and the plush, comfortable Belvedere furniture that adds the final touch of luxury to the client experience.

6“We really enjoy turning our client’s vision into reality. Creating and renovating these highly unique commercial spaces is truly a blast and a fun challenge,” said Chris Biljan, owner of Great Northern Builders.

The Salon celebrated its grand opening in February, 2016, and have had such an enthusiastic response from the community they plan to submit for the “Salon of the Year” award with Salon Today.

“Providing a unique, unforgettable experience to our clients is at the foremost of our business. It’s incredible to see our dream become a reality, and the space that Great Northern Builders designed completely exceeded our expectations. It’s a dream come true,” said Johnson.

With over 15 years of experience and an impeccable reputation, Great Northern Builders specializes in residential and commercial construction, renovation, remodels, and restoration throughout Minnesota and Wisconsin with expert crews, unrivaled customer service, and quality workmanship.

We turn your vision into a reality. Call us today at 651.455.9371 for a free consultation!