High-profile location fuels business for new Port salon

Borrowing its name from its location, Le Grand Salon opens in renovated building on Grand Avenue

LE GRAND SALON owner Ashley Fransee (center) stood with hairstylists Kristen Zeck (left) and Dana Maechtle inside their new business, which opened in July. The three women previously worked together at Salons of Conservancy Court in Saukville. Photo by Sam Arendt
By 
JOE POIRIER
Ozaukee Press staff

Le Grand Salon owner Ashley Fransee and her partners wanted a high-profile location for their new salon, and they found it on Grand Avenue in Port Washington.

“It’s been great since we moved in. We’ve been getting a lot of new clients and walk-ins,” she said.

The hair salon, which opened at 477 W. Grand Ave. in July, was once home to a pizzeria, bakery and most recently The Help Key, a computer repair shop.

Fransee’s business partners are Kristen Zeck and Dana Maechtle, who rent chair space from her.

“When you do a chair rental, you basically own your own business and pay for your own supplies,” Zeck said.

Fransee said she is seeking another partner to bring in more fresh faces.

The three women first met while working at Salons of Conservancy Court in Saukville about eight years ago and have been friends ever since.

“We’re glad to be back together. We’re a good group that likes to laugh a lot,” Maechtle said.

Prior to Saukville, Fransee worked in Port Washington at North Shore Hair Design.

The trio said they kept all of their customers since relocating. Their clients span from Sheboygan to Waukesha and even include a few out-of-staters.

“The relationships you develop over the years is really important to us,” Fransee said. “Sometimes they have difficult hair and they’re afraid to try someone else because they had a bad experience.”

Over the years, they’ve seen it all when it comes to styles. Maechtle said she used to clip jersey numbers for players on Grafton High School’s basketball team, and Fransee said she once did a “tri-hawk.”

After taking over the new location in March, Fransee spent two months renovating the space, which included replacing the outside stairs with a ramp to make the entrance more accessible.

“That’s really important for us,” she said. “I just got a new client last week because she could no longer walk up the stairs at her old stylist.”

Fransee said the salon sees about 10 to 20 customers per day, depending on the services being provided.

She said being a first-time business owner is satisfying.

“It’s very empowering and there’s a sense of accomplishment,” she said.

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Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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