Renaissance Salon To Close After 33 Years

December 9, 2014

After 33 years in business, Renaissance Hair & Beauty Ltd will close as of January 31st 2015.

“The progressive physical disability of owner-manager Ms. Giles-Woodhouse has become ever more challenging and she has been forced to make the heartbreaking choice to retire and close the business,” the company said.

“Renaissance [which we chose because it means “new beginning”] was born in November 1981 in the Williams Building Burnaby Street. We were the first specialist Beauty and Skin Care Spa in Bermuda. Both Jackson School of Dance and Scott Crafts were our wonderful neighbors in the building. Often our afternoon Facial clients were lulled to sleep listening to the piano practice upstairs! We became well established and remained in these premises for ten years.

“It was then time to turn the page, expand and take on new challenges. Windsor Place was then under construction and with the support and assistance of the building owners the purpose-built salon evolved. With three Beauty treatment rooms, the main Hairdressing department with nine stations and a manicure area.

“Over the years we have been pivotal leaders in the changes in the industry; watching and helping so many “small seeds” grow. These people went on to become owners and participants in many of the salons in Bermuda.

“As a Hairdresser, Beauty Therapist and City & Guilds teacher Ms. Woodhouse with other owners , spent many years during the 80’s and 90’s trying to set up the appropriate training environment for Bermudians, so they would not have to seek training overseas. At that time both hairdressing and skin care courses taught in England, Canada and the USA were obviously geared to Caucasian Hair or Skin with almost no time spent on natural or relaxed hair and Ethnic Skin types and the chemicals, treatments and services required. With vigorous support from the Department of Education, National Training Board and Government, these seeds of education began to grow.

“The Personal Care and City and Guilds Hairdressing program at Cedar Bridge Academy and Bermuda College were born. To assure the successful certification from City & Guilds, Ms. Woodhouse spent four years designing, teaching and piloting this program at CedarBridge. These were such wonderful and productive years facilitating the passing of expertise and experience on to young Bermudian women.

“The opportunity to design and implement such a comprehensive programme was only possible with the total support of our diligent, dedicated staff, which over the years has played such vital part of our success. So many have given decades of service to the Renaissance family- going on to open successful businesses of their own both here and overseas.

“To name names would be a detriment to the ones that; because of a senior moment, we may overlook. We are proud to say that for twenty of these years we had an all-Bermudian staff. You know who you are: thank you is just too small a word.

“Renaissance has been blessed with loyal and valued clients, who over the decades have become part of our salon family. We hear and become equal part of the many stories shared during the moments of hairdressing and beauty services! Some having been with Denise for her whole career including the first ever salon client Mrs. Tatem. Sadly with all the births, marriages and happy events we sometimes had to deal with tragic loss. Stylists Jean Ann, Leaha and Assistant Manager Olympia were taken too soon.

“In an ideal world someone would pick up these business reins. The sad part of this is that we are seeing so many wonderful Bermudians who have received the training required leaving this profession unable to sustain a decent living . We are making this choice because of disability, but the economy is a national problem affecting every Bermudian small business…

“There will never to be a good time for this. All the present staff have worked so hard together for so many years will now be seeking further employment. For the clients, staff and friends – we know you understand that as of January 31st it will be time to turn the key and hopefully “still proudly walk out” and start a new chapter. Thank you all.”

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Comments (17)

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  1. nikki says:

    Renaissance it has been a journey. I remember my first appointment with Kate when they where located in Burnaby Street building. Been a loyal customer for over 27 years. I miss the staff and products. Best of luck to all of you in your future endeavours.

    • Caroline says:

      If you’re looking to continue your Dermalogica facial and products try Leanne at She’s an excellent Aesthetician.

      • Gosh says:

        Try to show some compassion and support. You don’t have to jump on the bandwagon to gain new customers like this!

      • Leanne Smith says:

        Thank you so much for thinking of me and recommending me. I love my job and helping my clients and using DERMALOGICA products. In our industry we are here for the clients needs first and not like gosh says to jump on the band wagon.

  2. Julene says:

    Oh no! I will miss buying the Dermalogica Products. Best of luck to you.

    • Leanne Smith says:

      Thank you so much for thinking of me and recommending me. I love my job helping my clients and using Dermalogica the worlds number one product line! I am here if you need me.

  3. Darwin's Child says:

    Always beautifully coiffured by Paul and Freddie there. It will be missed.

  4. Vote for Me says:

    This could be a good news story. Can the existing staff organise to continue what appears to be a good business?

    • Kim Smith says:

      I like your thinking. I am wondering why the business has to close… can it not be sold or leased out? Perhaps they could run it in conjunction with the training at the Bermuda College???

  5. Audrey says:

    Sad to see this but definitely understand! Enjoyed the time at Cedarbridge Academy learning the Personal Hair Care Techniques from Mrs. Woodhouse! She was a great spirit and loved what she did. Hope to still see her in passing. Best wishes in whatever is next for you and may you enjoy every moment.

  6. Northern rose ltd says:

    So sorry to hear your closing. I wish you the very best of luck in the future Denise. You will be a big miss to the industry.

  7. Golden child says:

    I’m truly sad but happy for you Denise I remember the first time you guys were trying to open on burnaby street I was the yong carpenter who hung all the doors in the spa I hasent a clue what a spa was and being a yong black male at 17 yrs old had no idea what a facile was I was having acne prob and you really showed me how to care for my skin I felt kinda embarrassed to tell all my peers of this but I did and soon they too was going today I still carry the knowledge the you installed in me and pass it on to my kids who in turn pass it on
    Thanks so much guys
    Take care Denise
    Love you

  8. Racháel says:

    Denise is a phenomenal women. She gave me a job as a receptionist when I was 14 years old. She trusted me and helped create my worth. We went on to teach at CBA together where she helped shape more lives and inspire so many of our terrific kids. All the best Mrs. Woodhouse !!! You are respected and loved !!!!

  9. Disa says:

    I have many happy memories from there. Carolyn, Paul and had many giggles…. Super job Denise….

  10. bermudaglobetrottersdotcom says:

    All the best, Mrs Woodhouse! Such a wonderful spirit. And big hugs to Susan, the best in the business!

  11. Denise says:

    Thank you all for such inspiring and thoughtful words, I am overwhelmed by the support and kindness. Having brought Dermalogica to Bermuda ( 25 years ago) it shall, remain under our ( Renaissance) direction and care and will ALWAYS be available in Bermuda .

  12. Freddy says:

    Thank you for my great beginning, believing in me when I almost stopped believing in myself, and thought I would never do more than a handful of clients a week.Happy memories, whoopee cushions..Christmas knickers and all..remember all that?? :].lots of laughs..Thank you