Sat. Jan 28th, 2023

Once the weather cools in New York, plenty of locals head down south to Florida for the winter. Now Julien Farel will be one of them—with a new Palm Beach salon as a permanent resident, opening today. “I’ve wanted to expand my business into Florida for quite some time and post-pandemic it was apparent that to best accommodate my clientele—as many now live there during the winter months—it was time for us snowbird as well,” says Farel, Chairman, Julien Farel Group. “Palm Beach has always been my destination of choice—it’s like the American Monte Carlo!”

Farel has always drawn to the legendary locale’s beautiful weather and scenery. “What is not to love?” he says. “I really enjoy the people, though, the most. They are smart, sophisticated and polished. I am very excited to be a part of the community! In addition, I really love the passion and integrity of the salon team and the partnership role with The Breakers. There is a great mix of locals who have lived there for years and are enthusiastic about the history of the area, and there is a new set who enjoy the fashion and the buzz and have relocated to Palm Beach recently. I also love the excitement in the area during high season.”

The Palm Beach location is the third Julien Farel salon. A long time Manhattan fixture, the Julien Farel Restore Salon & Spa spans 10,000 square feet and is tucked inside the Loews Regency Hotel on Park Avenue. He has also served as the official partner of the US Open Tennis Tournament for 14 years with a pop-up salon in Flushing, New York. “I am very proud to partner with the USTA for several reasons,” he says. “This was the first project my wife secured when we started working together and I was at Roland Garros, the French Open, for many years.”

The new Palm Beach location is at Via Flagler by The Breakers, just steps away from The Breakers Palm Beach Hotel. “As a business owner and someone who enjoys traveling, I’ve always admired The Breakers,” Farel says. “They are so well-respected, not only regionally, but internationally. The Royal Poinciana has also grown into a luxury shopping destination, so it was a perfect fit for the Julien Farel brand.”

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The team of beauty experts at the Palm Beach location will be led by Reigan Roan-Zapatier, with the salon serving residents and his New York City clients living in the area seasonally. “We will be continuing the Park Avenue hospitality we are known for in New York City, as well as the level of pampering which is unique to us,” Farel says. “Our top talent and ‘home away from home’ feeling people love us for will also be felt in Palm Beach.”

Though the Palm Beach location will deliver the same services as the New York City salon, Farel admits the vibe might be a little different. “Our main mission is to exceed our clients’ expectations and this mantra will apply to any location,” he says. “I anticipate our Palm Beach location will be more relaxed as the overall Florida mindset lends itself to a slower pace and a more stress-free persona.”

Though he has his hands full at the moment, Farel isn’t ruling out a fourth salon one day. “If I could choose another location, my heart would say Monte Carlo but the rational and practical part of me is taking a closer look at Miami or Dallas,” he says.

During his three decades in the industry, Farel has seen the beauty industry change. “We are constantly evolving and adapting in an ever-changing climate,” he says. “With COVID-19, we rebalanced and focused on our team and clients’ needs. What has changed is the curation—everything that is filtered from media, celebrities and influencers. For us, we are focusing on clinically-proven haircare to nourish the scalp and hair. We have invested in clinical studies for our haircare hero, Restore, which is a shampoo treatment for optimal scalp health and hair growth. We are now looking for haircare distribution partners for the next phase of growth.”

Ultimately, it’s all about serving clients, and putting them first is Farel’s favorite part of the job. “Making my clients look and feel their personal best is the instant gratification that comes with my job,” he says. “But more recently, a deeper and more satisfying role has evolved from managing my team-to-team building. Interacting and inspiring my team to rise to challenges is what I find to be most satisfying now. Witnessing others succeed and flourish is the best part of my job and I always feel at one with my team because I am one of them. I love running a business, but I am always a hairdresser first. That is my foundation and my passion.”

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