Whether you’re looking for that perfect piece of jewelry or need to repair a watch or family heirloom, there is a little gem of a business on the north side of Waldorf that has served locals for almost 40 years. Golden Renaissance Jewellers is the number one custom design studio and restoration company in the Southern Maryland area, also drawing customers on their commute back and forth to Washington DC and Baltimore.
Golden Renaissance has been owned and operated in Waldorf since 1981. Randall Heim, owner, was stationed in Thailand with the military in the 1970s, where he learned about and found a fascination with gold and gemstones. Curiosity struck, and he wanted to learn more about jewelry making. After coming home and attending school to learn the trade, he eventually opened up the business in 1981.
“It was a totally different world back then, especially in Charles County,” said Heim’s daughter and general manager, Katie Traas. “We had one stop light on the highway, and now it’s like a metropolis in comparison.” Over the years, they’ve moved three times, with their current storefront being the largest showroom to date.
“We’ve seen a lot of growth over the years within the county,” said Traas. “ We have been concentrating on making more connections with the millennial generation and those individuals whom are new to Southern Maryland. Our main focus is building trust with potential new clients.”
Buying a luxury item is not a regular occurrence for most, and the majority of their customers haven’t heard of them until they need something like an engagement ring or jewelry repair. “If people are in conversation with a friend or family member, and they need a watch or jewelry repair, our store is usually one of the first names to come up,” said Traas.
Once a new customer comes into the store, they often realize there’s that homegrown connection. Traas said, “We’re real people too; with your best interests at heart. We care about your needs, we care about what you’re looking for, and getting you a quality piece. Or, refurbishing and making that heirloom piece wearable again.”
Traas credits their growth over the past few years to notoriety and their online presence. Their Facebook marketing is also strong. Though they don’t do online sales, their website allows the customer to immediately chat through the website via text or email. “We try to stay up to date and respond automatically when people have questions; we even respond after business hours to meet a customer’s inquiry. We want people to know that there is a real person on the other side of the screen and to assure them that we will always try to do our best.”
Inside the store, staff spend a lot of time cleaning. Even during normal times, this is typical for jewelry stores, with glass cases that show every fingerprint, and customers trying on pieces. During the COVID pandemic, those practices intensified. They disinfect all surfaces and handles every day, and if jewelry comes out of the case and is touched by hand, they ultrasonic and steam clean it before putting it back in the case.
They do door-to-car deliveries and drop offs and pickups. “Whatever makes the customer most comfortable, that’s what we’ll do,” said Traas. They schedule appointments and make sure there’s a 1-to-1 employee/customer contact at a time, as well as spreading out over the showroom floor.
About their work, Traas said, “It’s our job to make sure those pieces you invest in are quality made for the customer to love it, wear it, and enjoy it for a long time to come.” The quality of their work, integrity, and homegrown connection should keep Golden Renaissance Jewellers going for many more years as well.
To learn more about Golden Renaissance Jewellers, visit their website at www.renaissancejeweler.com. For information on how the Charles County Economic Development Department can help your small business, check our Business Support page.