Pampering at its finest

Need some pampering? Head down to Spa on the River for five-star treatment.

After working more than 17 years for a glass manufacturing container plant, the company moved and Judith Santimaw was out of a great paying job. So, in 1996 she opened Exclusively Nails, Inc. in the Tri-County Mall. It wasn't long before Santimaw's clientele outgrew the beauty shop.

"I was blessed with so many loyal customers that I "outgrew" the tiny 600 square foot rental space," she said. "Renting was no longer suitable for my plans."

She began looking for a larger place and set her eyes on a 3,400 square foot building between Route 31 and the Seneca River.

"In November of 2000, I purchased the former Baldwinsville Animal Hospital that is highly visual with a steady flow of traffic and a gorgeous setting on the beautiful Seneca River," she said. "After adding all the new services and talented Spa staff, we had to change the name. I like simple and to the point, so I thought Spa...On the River."

Spa on the River has a Roman theme, due to Santimaw's Italian heritage.

"I'm 50 percent Italian and my mother is 100 percent," she said. "My grandparents came to the U.S.A. from Ancona, Italy. I love everything about Italy! I've traveled to Milan and Rome, experiencing spas there."

Santimaw chose to build her business in Baldwinsville because there was so much room for growth.

"The wonderful residents of Baldwinsville deserved a luxurious spa to visit," she said. "I predicted years ago that Baldwinsville would be making headlines in the future. I wanted the residents of Baldwinsville and the surrounding areas to feel as though they could "get away from it all" without having to leave town."

According to Santimaw, the residents have responded with arms wide-open.

"I'm so amazed at how kind, good natured and truly down to earth everyone is. It is honestly a pleasure to have the opportunity to serve them."

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