MICHAEL HEATON AND JOSH RICHARDS
A Como barber shop has been allowed to incorporate a barista service in the latest instance of a growing trend around Perth.
Short Black and Sides, located on Labouchere Road, operated as a hair and beauty salon for the previous occupants before the men’s grooming business took over.
The barber shop opened in November as it awaited approval from the City of South Perth to operate also as a cafe.
Part-owner Stephanie Both said plans for the combined barber and barista business had been in the making for some time.
“It was already a salon beforehand so we could trade as a barber but to go ahead with the café licence we had to do it separately,” Ms Both said.
“We probably thought of the idea before it even became a trend and it’s actually come out and become more of a thing now.
“When we get clients in here they say they like the feel and vibe of the shop and that it’s more like a Melbourne feel.”
Both said what she hoped people would come in and relaxed.
“We want them to actually enjoy their time in here and receive good customer service all round,” she said.
Perth CBD-based Uncle Joe’s, and The Milk Barber in Hillarys, have both been running a joint barber and barista service for the past two years.
Uncle Joe’s Manager Cheree Veletta said their city-based location was the driving force behind their barber and barista concept.
“We’re in the CBD and get a lot of workers so people are not on holidays,” Ms Veletta said.
“They are working, so rather than having a beer or a scotch they’re going to have a coffee.
“So for us it’s very much about supplying a good coffee and having a beverage that suits the location and demographic of our customers.”
Part-owner of The Milk Barber, Brian Shields, said the business had been well-received in Hillarys.
“We’ve always had a passion for coffee and barbering and there’s never been anything down at Hillarys Boat Harbour in terms of what we deliver,” Mr Shields said.
“We want to create a kind of community hub and social area for everyone to come down and enjoy themselves.”
Murdoch University Professor of Economics David Butler has noticed the increasing number of barber and barista shops in Perth and says the two services complement each other.
“People who are good at chatting to customers while they are giving them a haircut can also be quite good at chatting to customers when they are making them a coffee so it is an overlapping skill set in a way,” Professor Butler said.
“It’s also a better way to make use of space and provides an alternative for the customer rather just waiting in line.”
Ms Both said she hoped her café would be fully operational once renovations were complete within the next month.