Astor Place Hair Stylists, the iconic salon and barbershop that has been an East Village fixture for 73 years, is the latest casualty of the coronavirus pandemic.
Management at the basement barbershop, which counted everyone from actors Robert de Niro and Kevin Bacon to artist Andy Warhol, Mayor de Blasio and disgraced former state assembly speaker Sheldon Silver as loyal customers told staff on Friday they will close just before Thanksgiving.
“We’re down 90 percent of our business,” manager Michael Saviello told The Post, adding many of the offices and shops that surround Astor Place Hair Stylists have shuttered because of the coronavirus pandemic. “We’ve been open every day since reopening in June but we’ve reduced our hours.”
Saviello, who is also known as “Big Mike” — who has worked at Astor Hair for 40 years — said the news was devastating to the 40 hairstylists, some of whom have worked at the shop for more than 40 years. “A lot of people cried when we told them the news. Some of our customers cried.”
The budget-friendly barbershop has been owned by the same family for three generations. Haircuts start at $23, said Saviello.
Known as “the United Nations of hair cutting,” where stylists speak several languages, the sprawling single room salon attracted tourists from around the world. Stylists’ stations are crowded with autographed photos of their celebrity clients, and Saviello has set up an artists’ studio where he paints portraits during his lunch hours. Other stylists set up a karaoke machine at the hair-cutting factory.
“Maybe we’ll come back when the city comes back, but right now it’s not feasible,” said Saviello.