Business of the Month: Richie's Barber Shop
March business of the Month we are with Richie Ramirez owner of Richie’s Barber Shop on Coast Village Road in Montecito. Richie has made major changes to the definition of what a barber shop should be. He's not only the owner but he is a long time barber himself and the identity of the brand that is Richie's. He is quoted by the Santa Barbara Young Professionals as "someone who is involved in giving back to our community and helping other small local businesses thrive." He was one of many businesses during the recent mudslide that was effected, but had the optimism and strong support from clientele and their following to get through that rough time. Here is our interview with him:
How long have you open?
The shop has been open for 7 1/2 years.
How did Richie’s come to be, what was your initial reason for opening Richie’s Barber Shop?
The whole thing was that I wanted my own business, and where I was cutting at before I felt like it wasn’t….I wanted to do something bigger. I felt like where I was at was kind of stagnant. I felt like the people there were never going to grow. So, in order for me to build Richie’s Barber Shop I had to go off on my own and start it.
There was a level of service you wanted to provide your customers that you felt wasn’t at the previous barber shops you have worked at, which leads me to my next question, what sets Richie’s apart from other barber shops?
Everything. The service, the haircuts, everything we provide is full service. Everything from the music that we play, down to what is on the television is all thought out. I have been doing this for 20 years now and I worked at shops before this and saw what could have been better, and what could be improved on so I took all of that and I built this. ( Richie’s )
That’s great! Have you always been at this location on Coast Village Road?
What do you love most about owning this business?
I like the sense of community. You make so many friends, and coming into work every day it’s not like coming to work. You get to hang out, I am watching sports on the TV, cutting my buddies hair, I have got a great team. I built this for that reason. I can come to work every day and be happy, and the other people enjoy it so it’s very rewarding. Every day it’s like I am hosting a super bowl party.
I know you are really involved in the community, so tell us more about some organizations or things you are involved in that you enjoy giving back to.
We get involved in a little bit of everything. From Toys for Tots to the Teddy Bear Foundation, and we do as much as we can. One of the girls who works from me coordinates that stuff for us.
So I also know you recently received the Young Professional of the Year Award, how was that?
I wasn’t expecting it. There was a lot of stiff competition, I figured there was no way I would win so when I received it I was really excited. I want to use it as a platform for small businesses.
Well it’s well deserved, you are more than barber shop it sounds like.
Richie’s is more than just a barbershop, it’s a brand.
How long have you been involved in young professionals?
What was it like for you as a small business during the recent natural disasters?
It was rough, it was a hard spot. But we did have so many people who came to help us like our clients and we opened a pop-up shop so we were still able to take care of our clients. We have so many faithful and loyal clients that they made that time way easier.
That’s fantastic, where was your pop-up shop?
We did one at Jamie Slone Wines on Anacapa, it was a perfect location, we were there for a week and were able to tend to a lot of our clients.
Visit Richie's Barber Shop next to the new Juice Ranch on Coast Village Road or online at www.richiesbarbershopsb.com / instagram @richiesbarbershop / facebook.com/richiesbarbershop805