As clients’ hair grows in lockdown, so does this shuttered Manhattan salon’s waiting list. But the $1,000 price tag for a cut hasn’t budged, despite the pandemic and the recession. “We have over 1,000 people on a waiting list,” Julien Farel tells Bloomberg News of his tony Julien Farel Restore Salon, Spa & Fitness. Many customers will also be seeking his colour assistance, he says, adding that “85% of blondes have disappeared during the pandemic.” Farel says he isn’t worried that his regulars might have qualms paying his pre-pandemic rate once the salon is able to reopen in Phase 2. The Upper East Side facility, which has been closed since late March, counts such names as Katie Holmes, Cristina Cuomo and Rafael Nadal as customers.
The 10,000-square-foot salon in the Loews Regency New York Hotel plans to bring back 50 of its 150 employees once they are allowed to trim locks again. Julien’s wife and business manager, Suelyn Farel, is leading the charge and laying out their coronavirus-precaution guidelines, including requiring a mask, temperature check, hand-washing and hand-sanitizer application upon entry. All phones and eyeglasses will be wiped down, and handbags must be placed in plastic bags, Bloomberg writes. While the salon usually offers a menu of services including facials, massages, waxing and nail work, for the time being it only plans to offer haircuts. Despite confidently maintaining the sky-high price for a trim, the salon anticipates revenue to fall by about a third this year — although Julien did manage to make some money while in quarantine. The Manhattanite has been staying busy while sheltering in the Hamptons by doing hair-cutting and -styling house calls, charging double his rate.
Photo Credit: Julien Farel Restore Salon, Spa