In a world where successful businesses attract client
communities by marketing experiences, an intimate knowledge of one’s
target audience provides the best build-out blueprint.

Salons of the Year 2009: Judges & Process An Über-posh day resort

offering every service and amenity imaginable. A
Soho-meets-South Beach space to tempt transplanted suburbanites. A
modern-day jewel-box for Sin City sophisticates. A welcoming Cheers-like setting where everyone knows your name. As the winners of
the 2009 Salons of the Year take their design direction from their own
unique target markets, the only distinct trend this year is
diversity—in size, budget, materials, environments, influence and

 Salons of the Year 2009: Judges & Process
2009 Grand Prize Winner
Avanti Day Resort
Manalapan, New Jersey
 Salons of the Year 2009: Judges & Process

1st Runner Up
Intrigue Salon
Marietta, Georgia
 Salons of the Year 2009: Judges & Process

2nd Runner Up
Globe Salon
Las Vegas, Nevada
 Salons of the Year 2009: Judges & Process

3rd Runner Up
St. Paul, Minnesota

Salons of Distinction:

Amore’ Salon and Spa, Aqua at the Georgia Center Salon and Spa, Arrojo, Christopher J. Salon, Complexions Spa for Beauty and Wellness, Five Salon, Mizu (Boston), Mizu (New York), Phillipostyle Hair Studio, Robert Cris Salon, Salon 124, Scott J. Salons and Spas, Splurge Salon, Square One Salon and Spa, Tangles of Evans, The Salon by Lora Brown.


Salons of the Year 2009: Judges & Process
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2009 Panel of Judges

Michele L. Pelafas
Salons of the Year 2009: Judges & Process

more than 16 years of experience, Pelafas has provided design services
for hundreds of clients nationally and internationally. Her
full-service interior design company, based in Oak Brook, Illinois,
( specializes in salon and spa design. Pelafas
graduated with honors from the Illinois Institute of Art in Chicago and
holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Interior Design. An educator and an
expert, she has been frequently featured in salon industry trade
publications and has taught design classes at major trade shows across
the country, including America’s Beauty Show, Premiere Beauty Show,
ISSE and PBA’s Symposium.

David Wagner
Salons of the Year 2009: Judges & ProcessAs the 2008 Salons of the Year grand prize winner, Wagner certainly knows what it
takes to produce winning salon design. A world-renowned hair stylist,
artist, entrepreneur, educator, and author, Wagner is the founder/owner
of JUUT Salonspas, the original Aveda concept salons. With eight
locations in the Midwest and one in San Francisco’s Bay Area, JUUT
Salonspas are continually voted “Best Salon” in their communities.
Wagner is also the best-selling author of Life As A Daymaker: How to
Change the World by Simply Making Someone’s Day and the initiator of
the Daymaker Movement.

Katerina Soukhopalov
Salons of the Year 2009: Judges & ProcessBorn and
raised in Moscow, Russia, Soukhopalov holds degrees in interior design
and architecture from prestigious institutions, such as New York’s
Parsons School of Design, Chelsea School of Architecture and Design and
Westminster University, both in London. Her work experience includes
residential and commercial projects, graphic design and print work,
image branding and advertising campaigns. Soukhopalov recently launched
her own New York-based firm, MSK Design Group, (
taking on as one of her first clients Vasken Demirjian Salon @ Trump.

Kate Gallagher Cicela
Salons of the Year 2009: Judges & ProcessAs
soon as she joined Chicago-based Vi Nelson & Associates, a PR and
marketing consultancy firm, Cicela knew the salon industry was the
right place for her. A graduate of the famed School of the Art
Institute of Chicago, with a major in figure sculpture, she immediately
understood the design aspects that hair stylists and salon owners face
everyday. Eight years later, she’s totally immersed in the industry and
involved in all aspects, from America’s Beauty Show to beauty schools,
service products and science-based salon education.

leaving high school at age 17, dropping her last name and setting up
her own company, Irish-born Clodagh has been a constant force in the
design world. She’s widely recognized as a design leader committed to
the ‘green movement,’ creating stunning properties with materials that
reflect her experiences and spirituality. As she celebrates her 25th
year as a designer in New York, her Manhattan-based studio oversees
three divisions: a product design group, an on-premises showroom and
Clodagh Design (, an architectural and interior design
practice. Some of her well-known salon and spa designs include: Miraval
Resort & Spa, Nemacolin Woodlands, Noelle Day Spa, Sasanqua, Spa de
Serville and White Horses at Doonbeg Golf Resort.

The Judging Process

The cover of June 2009 Salon Today, featuring the results of our prestigious Salons of the Year competition.

of the Year judging took place in three phases. First, SALON TODAY
editors and designers reviewed each of the entries, including essays
and photography. Next, a panel of editors and art directors evaluated
each entry in further detail, selecting a group of finalists. Finally,
the panel of expert judges scrutinized essays and evaluated seven to 10
images from the finalists, scoring them in five different décor
categories. Judges’ scores were combined and used to determine the grand-prize winner, the runners up, and the Salons of Distinction.

  Read about the panel of judges and the judging process.
Salons of the Year 2009: Judges & Process

See the full list of winners. Get results from previous years.
Click here

Trends from 2009 Salons of the Year.
See pictures here