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Bel-Air Barber Shop, 1617 Broad River Road: Early 2012   10 comments

Posted at 12:38 am in Uncategorized

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Commenter ED points out that the Bel-Air Barber Shop, a Boozer Shopping Center institution, has closed after 40 years. The old style places certainly seem to be closing faster than new ones are springing up. And of course it's depressing to note as well that if this place was 40 years old -- it is a lot *newer* than the places I started getting my hair cut..

(Hat tip to commenter ED)

Written by ted on June 20th, 2012

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10 Responses to 'Bel-Air Barber Shop, 1617 Broad River Road: Early 2012'

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  1. It seems like Boozer may be in danger of becoming a ghost mall. Got to give them credit though for being as viable as they were for so long in a declining area.

    Tom

    20 Jun 12 at 9:17 am

  2. This shop underwent a change in ownership in the summer of 2009. Prior to that my dad and I always got our respective haircuts here.

    There were three guys. One retired, the other moved out to Lexington for a couple of years prior to his retirement and the other is now in White Rock. I now go to the guy in White Rock on US 76.

    The White Rock guy told me that the shop sold to a couple of girls and I noticed it had undergone a change and looking at Ted's pics, it doesn't look like the Bel Air Barber Shop my dad and I used to get our haircuts at. The wall paint scheme as well as the flooring are totally different from what I remember.

    Andrew

    20 Jun 12 at 11:29 pm

  3. Talk about a piece of St. Andrews' history! Does anyone know why they closed? I imagine that the guys that ran the place have to be close to retirement age. I remember my Dad taking me there when I was around 10 or so. I went there again for several years in the late 70's - early 80's when I was just looking for a good cheap haircut without all of the foo-foo crap that you had to put up with in a 'styling center'. There was no mousse or gels or any of that crap. There weren't any pictures of super models hanging on the walls or shampoo that is on sale for $25.00 a bottle.

    This was your old fashioned neighborhood barber shop. The classic red, white and blue colors associated with a barber shop (at least in the old days). The large barber chairs with the razor strops hanging from the side. It smelled of bay rum, musk and Sea Breeze with the bottles of Clubman and Lucky Tiger aftershaves lined behind the chairs. Locals would come in just to hang out, drink coffee and shoot the breeze with the barbers as they were working. Always had golf or a game of some kind on the TV. And then there was that big aquarium they had filled with the tropical fish.

    I could keep reminiscing but I think I've covered it!! It's just a shame that so much 'Americana' is vanishing.

    Homer

    21 Jun 12 at 12:01 am

  4. Sounds like Forest Lake Barber Shop where I started getting haircuts around 1962 or so..

    ted

    21 Jun 12 at 12:12 am

  5. Homer, I remember a significant portion of what you talked about in the second paragraph, especially the last two sentences.

    As far as the owners go, I don't know the story after the ownership changed in 2009.

    Andrew

    21 Jun 12 at 2:09 pm

  6. A lady named Kim bought the Shop from the original owners and worked at Belair until she took over another Shop in Lexington called Connell's in the Kmart Shopping Center.
    I have continued to keep Kim as my Barber. The drive is worth it to have a Barber who can do a good flattop!

    Bob

    8 May 13 at 2:08 pm

  7. I used to get my hair cut there in the 70s and early 80s. As a matter of fact, thanks to them providing paperback Discovery bibles on top of their TV for anyone to take, for free, I started reading the Bible and found the Lord.

    tomseay

    14 Jul 13 at 12:43 pm

  8. This was my grandad's barber shop for 48 years. Roger Smith was the original owner, and first barber at Bel Air Barber shop. I remember growing up at that barber shop. Working through school sweeping hair and washing towels. I also fed those fish mentioned in some of the other comments here. I used to love this place.
    He retired and sold the place back in 2009. Roger, my grandad passed away in August of 2012. He lived a great life, raised 2 girls, and six grandchildren with the money he made at the barber shop. It was a great piece of South Carolina history.

    Matthew

    15 Oct 13 at 8:25 pm

  9. My dad and I both used to get our hair cut here...Roger was typically the one to cut it and he used to always ask me to go first and ..I remember him having a pic that I assumed was his family at his station...I've had a gut feeling that he had died and found his obituary.

    Jordan (one of the other Bel-Air guys) now works at a different barber shop on US 76 in White Rock and I still go there...I felt comfortable because he had cut my hair before a couple of times and plus his Bel-Air equipment had made the move out there with him so there was a familiarity that I was comfortable with.

    Andrew

    15 Oct 13 at 10:50 pm

  10. @Matthew - I'm sorry to hear that your Grandfather passed away. Like Andrew, Roger was usually the one that cut my hair. Like I said in my previous post, this was a piece of Americana, the likes of which we'll never see again.

    Homer

    15 Oct 13 at 11:28 pm

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