While Gov. Bill Lee has come short of ordering all non-essential businesses to close down like California, New York and Illinois, he has implemented a shut down of dine-in restaurants, bars and gyms through an executive order, and has also encouraged other non-essential businesses to enact policies to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
One Spring Hill business that has met the challenge of adapting during the pandemic is Luis Classic Barbershop, who despite seeing a significant drop in customers, has managed to stay afloat.
Luis Classic Barbershop
Luis Classic Barbershop opened in 2017 and has all the dressings of a classic 1950s era barbershop: black leather barber chairs, a gold-colored regal chandelier and the classic wood cabinets housing mirrors for customers to see their haircut come to life in real time.
The barbershop’s second location in Nashville has recently closed due to Nashville Mayor John Cooper’s “Safer at Home” order, which closed all non-essential businesses — including barbershops — for a period of 14 days. Luis Classic Barbershop also has a third location that was set to open at the Cool Springs Galleria in Franklin in April, however, the opening has been postponed due to the uncertainty brought on by the coronavirus pandemic.
Adapting to a new world
The owner of Luis Classic Barbershop, Luis Molina, said that his business was lucky, as they had prepped far in advance for what they had predicted could be a dire situation. Stocking up on cleaning supplies such as gloves, disinfectant and toilet paper before shortages began, the barbershop was well stocked going into the coronavirus pandemic.
“We were fortunate because we got ahead of the frenzy,” Molina said. “We kind of read into it, and we were able to implement these measures before it was mandatory. That's the reason why we were able to get a sufficient amount of supplies; the gloves, the disinfectant sprays, the toilet paper.”
As far as changes to normal operations, Luis Classic Barbershop has pulled out on all the stops.
Instead of sitting in the waiting room, customers are now required to either sign in online or at the front desk, with those who sign in in person being asked to wait in their vehicles for a text or call before coming back inside. The kiosk customers use to sign up with has also been adorned with a plastic cover, one that is cleaned and changed regularly.
Barber chairs are now disinfected after each customer, with Molina insisting there be at least one empty chair between customers getting their haircuts. Staff has also been reduced by more than 50 percent as to keep in line with the Centers for Disease Control’s recommendations of no more than 10 people gathered together at one given time.
Molina said while his shop has continued to see a steady influx of customers despite the chaos, their revenue has still taken a substantial hit.
“We stay very busy, and we appreciate the support that the community has given us so far,” Molina said. “[Nevertheless], we have taken a hit. We're down to maybe 40 percent of what we do [normally].”
While the future for many local businesses remain uncertain, with at least 14 businesses in The Crossings already closing temporarily due to the coronavirus pandemic, Monila remained confident that his barbershop, along with all of its employees, would make it through these uncertain time — a belief he squared strongly on the support from the Spring Hill community.