There are many, many barber shops on the Upper West Side, and everyone has their favorite. For some, it’s because of the skill of the barber or the barber’s banter. For some, it’s because of the look of the shop or the convenient location or reasonable prices.
My barber shop — the Amsterdam Barber shop — is unique. It has been in business in the same location — the east side of Amsterdam Avenue between 73rd and 74th Streets — for 108 years, since 1914.
It has had five owners, including the current one, Maria Shakhmurov. Maria came here in 1995 from Uzbekistan, as did my barber, Vlad. She worked in the shop from 1996, cutting men’s, women’s and children’s hair, until she bought it in 2004.
It’s my barber shop because of Vlad’s skill — he gives a true European haircut and beard trim, with a razor and hot towel – and his pleasant personality, and because of the look of the shop with its 100-year-old barber chairs.
This is a barber shop that serves the UWS community. It employs 4 barbers and is open 7 days a week and has senior discount prices on Monday and Tuesday. When I get my haircut and beard trim, it is pure Heaven!