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Chris St-Cyr

How many years have you been in business in the DDBIA?


How many full-time employees (including yourself) work in your business or org?


Are your annual sales [budget] over or under $500K yearly?


What do you believe makes your business or org uniquely successful?

Cowitan's success is anchored in its active engagement in downtown revitalization projects, such as alley restorations and graffiti removal, showcasing a dedication to community improvement. Through exceptional service and inclusivity, Cowitan cultivates a warm and welcoming atmosphere where customers of all backgrounds feel valued. With affordable subscription options and drop-in rates, tanning becomes accessible to everyone, further solidifying Cowitan's position as a community hub. Led by owners Jason and Chris, Cowitan thrives on their Smart Tan Certification and unwavering commitment to customer care. Their adaptability in navigating challenges like extreme weather and the pandemic underscores Cowitan's resilience. Beyond financial metrics, Cowitan measures success through community impact and customer satisfaction, fostering a culture that attracts a diverse clientele, and ensuring its enduring relevance and appeal in downtown Duncan.


Regardless of how you define growth, what are the short- and long-term growth plans for your business?

Over the past three years, Cowitan has solidified its position as the premier tanning destination in Duncan, BC, earning the distinction of being voted the best tanning salon in the Cowichan Valley for two consecutive years. However, Cowitan's growth extends beyond financial success, as it strives to create a positive impact within the community. In line with this vision, the business has diversified its offerings by introducing an infrared sauna last year, catering to a wider range of wellness enthusiasts. Additionally, Cowitan has expanded its retail segment to include a beach-themed store and festival gear section, embracing the town's vibrant culture and enhancing its appeal to customers seeking a holistic experience. Moreover, Cowitan has actively participated in community events and initiatives aimed at fostering collaboration and prosperity in Duncan. This includes donating to local businesses and supporting various community projects, such as creating a beautiful alley adjacent to its premises, which encourages exploration and engagement among residents and visitors alike. Looking ahead, Cowitan envisions itself as a longstanding fixture in Duncan, serving as a beacon of support for neighbouring businesses and contributing to the collective growth and vitality of the town. Through its commitment to customer satisfaction, inclusivity, and community involvement, Cowitan exemplifies a holistic approach to growth that transcends mere financial metrics, embodying the spirit of collaborative progress in Duncan.

What new products or processes or other actions have you taken in the past to address changing market conditions, customer expectations and or growth opportunities?

Thank you for sharing the information about Cowitan's recent developments! Based on this, it's evident that Cowitan has undergone significant evolution to meet changing market demands and customer expectations. Here's a summary of the new products and initiatives introduced:


Cowitan has expanded its offerings beyond tanning services to include Party Beach Retail and festival outfits, catering to a broader range of customer interests and lifestyle preferences. This diversification reflects the business's adaptability and responsiveness to evolving market trends and customer needs. Additionally, Cowitan has recently launched a themed Infrared Sauna Room, further enhancing its wellness offerings and providing customers with alternative relaxation and rejuvenation experiences. To promote these new services effectively, Cowitan has targeted its marketing efforts towards the appropriate age range, ensuring that its message reaches the intended audience and maximizes awareness and engagement.


Overall, Cowitan's expansion into new product lines and the introduction of innovative services demonstrate its commitment to staying relevant and meeting the diverse needs of its customer base—these strategic initiatives position Cowitan for continued growth and success in the competitive market landscape.


How specifically do you operationalize the idea of “Excellence” in your business?

Cowitan embodies excellence through its unwavering commitment to customer satisfaction and kindness. For Cowitan, excellence means ensuring that every customer leaves feeling uplifted, with a better day than when they arrived. This customer-centric approach is ingrained in the business's culture, where employees are encouraged to be friendly, attentive and go above and beyond to meet customer needs. With a focus on creating positive and memorable experiences, Cowitan fosters loyalty among its clientele, evident in its impressive track record of 5-star reviews on Google for three consecutive years. This consistent praise reflects the effectiveness of Cowitan's dedication to providing a welcoming atmosphere where customers feel valued and appreciated.

Furthermore, Cowitan extends its commitment to excellence beyond its premises and into the community. Actively participating in local events, Cowitan aims to bring people together and foster a sense of belonging within the community. Led by owners Chris and Jason, who exemplify the values of kindness and customer service with over a decade of experience, Cowitan emphasizes the importance of small gestures, such as remembering customers' names or acknowledging changes in their appearance. By prioritizing customer satisfaction, kindness, and community engagement, Cowitan operationalizes excellence, resulting in positive outcomes for both its customers and the broader community.

In your submission form, you touched on your work doing graffiti removal. Can you speak more about what that process looks like for you?

Cowitan, under the leadership of owners Jason and Chris, has been actively involved in combating graffiti in the downtown Duncan core. Recognizing the importance of maintaining a clean and vibrant community, Chris and Jason have spearheaded efforts to remove graffiti from several surrounding businesses after a spate of tagging incidents. Cowitan has worked with the DDBIA to explore all options to remove graffiti from the downtown core. Their proactive approach reflects Cowitan's commitment to fostering a positive environment for all residents and visitors. Understanding that community involvement is key to creating a thriving urban landscape, Cowitan has not only assisted in graffiti removal but is also collaborating with nearby businesses to paint storefronts this summer, contributing to the revitalization of Duncan. This hands-on approach exemplifies Cowitan's belief that collective action is essential in making our community the best it can be, showcasing their dedication to improving the aesthetic and overall well-being of downtown Duncan. 

Your collaboration and support of your neighbouring businesses have been an inspiration and a beacon of hope to other businesses in Downtown Duncan. Do you have any future plans to keep the momentum going?

Cowitan has been actively engaged in promoting the downtown core of Duncan through various collaborative efforts. Initiatives such as creating a sandwich board sign highlighting nearby businesses to draw interest to businesses located on less busy streets, participating in graffiti removal projects, and alley restorations including the world's largest Spork art installation showcase Cowitan's commitment to enhancing the area's vibrancy and appeal.

Looking ahead, Cowitan expresses interest in further revitalizing the downtown Duncan core by beautifying another alley with a mural and landscaping, demonstrating a continued dedication to community enrichment. By fostering partnerships and investing in community revitalization projects, Cowitan aims to play a pivotal role in supporting local businesses and creating an inviting environment for residents and visitors alike. With a steadfast commitment to the community's well-being, Cowitan pledges to continue its efforts to ensure that Downtown Duncan thrives as a vibrant and welcoming destination.

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