The Boutique is re-opening under new owners on Saturday

The Boutique will reopen under new management this weekend in downtown Great Falls.

Alexis Haffner and her husband, Dustin, are the new owners.

It started as a joke between the two when Alexis, a regular shopper at The Boutique, heard the shop was closing.

“I loved shopping here,” she said Tuesday evening while the Haffner family was rearranging and restocking in preparation for the grand re-opening on Saturday.

After hearing the store was closing, she went home and told Dustin who said, “Well, do you want to buy it?”

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The couple had started Big Sky Cleaners a few years ago and Dustin said the success of that business put them in a position for Alexis to take over The Boutique and he’d continue managing the cleaning business.

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The Haffners bought the shop from Debbie and Melissa Lins who had been looking for a buyer with limited success and closed the shop in June.

The Lins’ had purchased the business in 2015.

Alexis said they’re sticking with the same vendors so many things will remain the same, but they’re adding some new options like a loyalty card.

“We wanted to stick with the concept,” Alexis said. “We’re getting great feedback already.”

Since the closing sale had cleared out most of the inventory, the Haffners have been busy restocking, with the help of their three kids.

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The Great Falls natives were middle school sweethearts and Alexis said “this is definitely a dream job. I never thought I’d be able to do something like this.”

For now, Alexis will be running the shop but she’ll likely hire some help once things are up and running.

Since it’s an existing business, the Haffners said they just needed to update information with the Secretary of State’s office and get a new safety inspection certificate through Great Falls Fire Rescue. Those inspections are required annually and when there’s a change in occupancy.

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Dustin said since they have business experience it hasn’t been as hard taking over The Boutique, versus starting from scratch.

But the retail industry is different than the service sector and the Haffners said they were looking forward to re-opening and growing the shop’s customer base.

“We just want to keep it going,” Alexis said.

The grand re-opening is July 14 at 9:30 a.m. at The Boutique, 122 Central Ave.