SAUK RAPIDS – A new business focused on meeting multicultural hair and beauty needs has set up shop in Sauk Rapids.

The Hair Palace and Boutique, located at 730 South Benton Drive, opened on November 15. The business offers hair appointments for women, men and children, massages and facial treatments, along with beauty supplies and clothing. Owner Arlesia Williams says jewelry cleaning, gift-wrapping and custom wig-making for people undergoing chemotherapy treatment are also available.

Williams, a licensed cosmetologist and barber, says business has been strong, with a large number of positive online reviews.

“We’re getting a lot of referrals and business through word-of-mouth,” Williams said. “It’s doing awesome.”

As a fairly new Sauk Rapids resident, Williams says she enjoys owning a business in the community.

“It’s very peaceful here,” Williams said. “Everybody is ‘Minnesota Nice.’ And, I see that there’s a need for African American stylists here – (stylists) that can work on any type of hair. I’ve already had clients of all types and nationalities here.”

“A lot of people say they go all the way to Minneapolis to get their hair and beauty supplies,” she added. “And I’m like, hmm, maybe we can do something about that!”

Hair Palace and Boutique employs three stylists and one master barber, along with contracted massage therapists. Williams, who also runs a nonprofit organization called Black Wall Street MN, says she wants to use the business as a way to reach and help those in need.

“We like to deal with all types of people,” Williams said. “We’ve got a free clothing rack here, and we’re planning on feeding the homeless here about once a month.”

“We have a lot of homeless or less fortunate people coming over here for services, and I get them dolled up and feeling good about their day,” she added.

Hair Palace and Boutique’s normal business hours are Monday-Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., but Williams says customers can request earlier or later appointments by calling the store at 507-551-5488 or by reaching out via their Facebook page.

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