When it comes to acting and designing Susan Bott, knows exactly how it works.
Bott studied at the University of Miami graduating with a bachelor’s in Fine Arts, focusing on everything to do with theater. After graduating, Bott was designing and constructing theatrical sets during the day and performing at night.
Working in New York City as a Working actor for 25 years, Bott would take on side clients for design while she was busy acting. Taking on more jobs over the years and staging properties for a friend who was on bed rest for pregnancy and told Bott to get her real estate license to sell her apartments, Bott said “these need some love” and staged the apartments that sold in a day.
Bott was featured in the New York Times when she sold her own apartment.
“The New York Times photographer asked, ‘Who designed this bathroom?’ and I said I did. She said I should be doing this. She was the real estate photographer for 30 years and she said, ‘I have never seen such a beautiful, pre-war bathroom, it’s done exactly the way it should be,'” said Bott.
Then I started my staging, and “bott 2 sell” then it turned into Room Tonic, because not only was she doing staging but design for the clients who bought the new apartment.
Bott is a certified elemental space-clearing practitioner, who uses sage, crystals, prayers, and other elements to change the energy in a room. Bott was changing the energy in the rooms often to help clients sell their properties in Manhattan turning her business into what’s now, Room Tonic.
During her stay in New York, Bott was offered to be the design coordinator for Ty Pennington’s, for The Food Network’s, American Diner Revival. Touring the country, ripping out diners, and redoing them in less than 48 hours.
After being approached a few times to run her own show, Bott’s experience after being a screen actor for 25 years in the union, Screen Actors Guild and American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA), Bott’s experience working for non union shows like HGTV was all about staying busy.
“You know, there was one day where we did not eat 24 hours we did not eat because we were in like Norman, Oklahoma. And we had to finish something and then production went to find us food, but everything was closed,” said Bott.
After returning home from Manhattan, Bott naturally fell into opening her store in Marblehead five months before COVID-19 hit. Finding out she would have a waiting list of clients, “Now I have a waiting list for design clients just because I think everybody has reached the point of like, we were stuck in our house for two, two plus years and we’re like, I hate this room,” she said.
Moving from Manhattan to Marblehead didn’t scare Bott’s decision to open a business with her vibrant and colorful high-end furnishing and home décor Offering custom-made Chinese Chippendale faux bamboo furniture to Asian inspires lamps.
“Chinoiserie is an Asian import back in the day, and it’s quintessentially Marblehead in reality because all of the sea captains who were out to see the way that they would show their prominence and their success is they would bring back Asian imports and most of them were chinoiserie in Asian imports. So if you go into a lot of these really older houses in Marblehead, you will see a lot of Asian import stuff, which is very coastal it’s very, very Marblehead, very New England,” said Bott.