Rebecca Erickson is a local beauty legend with 39 years of experience in the salon industry. This might sound like a lofty statement, but after visiting her business, Salon Ultimissimo in Hudson, and speaking with her regular clients, it’s clear that legend isn’t so much of a claim as it is an affirmation. Customers adore her.
The salon has been located on Walnut Street for the past 13 years in Hudson’s oldest building. The stone building dates back to 1857 and is one of the few structures that survived the Hudson fire of 1866. The longest tenant of the building was the Star Observer newspaper (then Star & Times), and the stained glass front windows still tout the newspaper’s recognizable star design.
Inside Salon Ultimissimo, the space is steeped in creative charm. With vibrant mosaic walls, and knickknacks and imagery from Erickson’s extensive travels, there’s something to marvel at throughout the interior. Visitors might easily forget it’s a full-service salon that offers hair, skin, nail and waxing services.
“I wanted that old-world feeling that the building lends itself to,” Erickson says. “I want it to feel like a sanctuary.”
CJ Suchta of Cottage Grove, Minn., has followed Erickson’s career in the Twin Cities metropolitan area for more than 35 years. “[Her skills] are that good,” Suchta says. “She’s worth it.”
When talking with Erickson’s clients and spending time in the salon, it quickly becomes apparent that Salon Ultimissimo’s success isn’t based on services alone—it’s also the exceptional customer service provided by Erickson and her team of six.
“We want everyone to feel they get a lot of personal attention,” longtime employee Megan Heffron says. “We want people to come in, unplug and relax.”
When Erickson is asked about the key to the salon’s success, she goes beyond the beautiful surroundings, the cunning scissors and mastery of the craft. The key element, she says, is to focus on people.
“It’s all about empowering people to find themselves,” Erickson says. “Whether it’s the staff, or the flow of people coming in and out, it’s all about strengthening the connection between yourself and others.”
Salon Ultimissimo Fun Facts
- The building has been visited by multiple mediums, all of whom agree that the 158-year-old building is haunted by spirits.
- The salon hosts the annual Ultimissi-Mutt Charity Dog Wash every June to raise money for local animal shelters.
- Many talented artists have contributed to the walls of Ultimissimo, including St. Paul artist Joy Lieberman, who painted a large mural in the salon.