By Srianthi Perera
At Bishops, a haircut is an added bonus to socializing. Or so it seems.
The franchised salon with an edgy identity and spirited brand culture from Portland, Oregon recently opened its second outlet in the southeast Valley, in SanTan Village.
Clients can expect a laid-back atmosphere where early-MTV-style curated music videos play on TV and art adorns the walls. Eight retro-style barber chairs will be at the ready. So will five or six stylists.
“We try to be a little different,” said Scott Goodrich, franchise owner, who lives in the Seville development in Gilbert.
Clients are taken on a walk-in-only basis (no appointments can be made, but online check in is allowed); can choose from an à la carte menu of services that includes style, shampoo, blow dry, a variety of cut and color options or a hot towel shave. These, in addition to unisex pricing, are some features that make Bishops different, Goodrich said.
Some locations serve a can of Montucky Cold Snacks to those over the age of 21 while they’re waiting, but it’s unsure whether the Gilbert salon will receive approval for that.
“In Portland and Seattle, they serve beer for free before you get a cut,” Goodrich said. “We’ve been battling in Arizona whether we can or not. We think we can, because we actually don’t charge and the beer is part of the service. You get your beer while you’re waiting.”
If all else fails, the company might settle for providing a can of cold brewed coffee.
“It’s all about the customer. And the service on being comfortable,” said Daniel Davoodi, marketing manager in Portland.
But the emphasis, of course, is on hair.
The motto is to “be you,” Goodrich said. “We celebrate different. We encourage people to express themselves through their hair.”
“Bishops is different than anything in the area. All of our stylists can perform a color service, style your hair, or work on your fade. We are open late, on weekends, and no appointments are required. We’re a place where everyone is welcome, with no judgments,” said Jenn Goodrich, co-owner.
The Goodriches are opening six Bishops locations in the Valley. The first, just across from the ASU Campus on Rural Road in Tempe, is also open and was the chain’s debut in Arizona. The couple hasn’t finalized the other spots, but is fairly certain one will be in Chandler.
Scott Goodrich feels the salon fits in between a regular hair salon and a high-end one.
Bishops was founded in Portland in 2001 by Leo Rivera and expanded to Seattle, and then to Ohio, Indiana, California and Arizona.
The business is “taking the brand nationwide,” said Scott Goodrich, and the total salon count of 23 will soon increase.
“We’re very busy; it’s exciting,” Davoodi said.
What’s outstanding about the franchise?
“I think it’s the look, the vibe,” he said. “We love our clients. And not only that, we love our employees. They get the proper training and they get the freedom to kind of be themselves. There are no descriptions in terms of their wardrobe. They can choose the music they like. I don’t want to say anti-corporate but in a sense it is.
“You feel like you’re going into your friend’s house to get a haircut.”