How to create an affordable luxury experience without compromising quality of service.
With a salon on one side and a barbershop on the other, in Concrete Barbers owner Chad Stewart has created a uniquely innovative concept, one that continues to provide plenty of room for growth. “We always start out with a hot towel service, which guys seem to really enjoy, and often come in just for it,” he says. With a demographic ranging between 30 and 55 years of age, many young fathers will bring their sons, too, creating an inviting family atmosphere, especially on weekends.
Concrete Barbers takes pride in providing a premium, yet accessible experience. “We take it to the next level, but have barbershop pricing because we compete with a lot of old-school barbershops,” says Stewart. While this may be surprising to many, Concrete Barbers has experienced much success so far, with walk-in traffic keeping a rotation of clients in the barbers’ chairs every day.
All the Feels
When it comes to design, Stewart strongly believes that “textures are key to having a comfortable, higher- end environment.” Along with a crisp, neutral colour palette that includes steel walls offering a reflective quality, ample natural light and clean lines create a cohesive appeal. There’s also a very purposeful minimalistic approach at each workstation. “Barbers can’t have a lot on their counters, so keeping it very clean throughout keeps the space a very relaxed environment for guys to come into.”
Taking It for the Team
As much as design plays a major part in creating this relaxed atmosphere where clients feel comfortable, Stewart also encourages his barbers to craft personalized connections with their clients. “Right from the beginning every barber writes a few notes about each client in their file,” he says, “Whether it’s the fade or the guards they used, there is a rapport right off the bat, and I’ve not really seen this much detail in salons.” For this reason, Stewart believes that male clients naturally are gravitating here and feeling right at home. Not to mention, all staff have been trained on bakery duty, baking fresh muffins daily, a small touch that clients have come to appreciate when walking in for a morning appointment.
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