Harrogate meets Saville Row at swanky new men’s salon

Patrick Byrne of Peter Gotthards. (130203AM1)

Patrick Byrne of Peter Gotthards. (130203AM1)

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A SUMPTUOUS new salon is bringing a slice of Savile Row to the “dashing and debonair” men of Harrogate.

Peter Gotthard, on Parliament Street, has launched a £100,000 men-only salon.

There are hidden grooming stations which slide seamlessly from the walls, luxurious leather chairs imported from Japan and even a maitre d’.

The idea is to introduce a new level of style to men’s grooming in Harrogate, in a rising trend not often seen outside of the country’s capital.

“People in Harrogate have very high standards,” said Patrick Byrne, owner of Peter Gotthard Hairdressing which has opened the new men-only salon on its ground floor.

“We had to go a step further - we needed something more. That something was in the level of service.”

Peter Gotthard, claiming to be the longest-standing salon in Harrogate, was founded in 1964. It is now owned and managed by Mr Byrne and his wife Cheryl and employs 23 staff. They see more than 800 clients each week.

There is a ladies’ salon, beauty rooms and Young Guns, a finishing school for apprentices which offers trendier cuts to teenagers at a reduced rate.

Now, after a £100,000 refurbishment, there is also the exclusive men’s salon.

“We realised that the business needed investment,” said Mr Byrne, 49.

“It was very traditional and there are plenty of traditional barber shops. Our clientele was getting older, not younger.”

A trip to London and the sumptuous Savile Row provided the answer - they would set up a hairdressing service bespoke to the men of Harrogate.

There are sinks which slide out of the walls. The luxurious leather barber’s seats, state-of-the-art Takara Belmont hydraulic chairs, are imported from Japan. The walls are completed with a black walnut finish and beauty products, Anthony for Men, are imported from America. There is even a maitre d’ called Kevin Jack, who has come from the fashion industry to work in the Parliament Street salon.

“Outside of London, there’s nothing like it,” said Mr Byrne. “It’s not a barber shop. The difference is in the quality and finish.”

There are further plans afoot to open a first-floor bar and waiting area, working with a local restaurant to serve lunches and snacks.

Since it opened in December, sales at the salon have been booming.

“The male grooming market is growing,” said Mr Byrne.

“We had a lot of clients in over the wedding fair and bridal exhibition, international travellers and people who had come up from London.”

“Nobody has done anything like this in Harrogate,” he added. “There’s plenty of competition out there and we wanted to be at the top end.

“There’s nobody else in the town, or even in the north of England, that has what we have.”