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November 3, 2009 - The Hoboken Man - Guest Review

For a mile-square city, Hoboken is packed to the gills with good things, from the delicious pizza (Marisa’s and Grande, I’m looking at you) to a great record store that really sells records (check out the vinyl at Tunes) - And while Hoboken already has its share of salons, barber shops, spas and boutiques, there’s nothing quite like The Hoboken Man, which finally saw it’s grand opening last month.

Located at 1150 Maxwell Lane, and billed as “The Barbershop at Maxwell Place,” The Hoboken Man offers upscale grooming services for men. While they’re adamant that this is a barbershop, not a “man salon,” it certainly isn’t like any barbershop I’ve seen. But semantics aside, the place is absolutely gorgeous. This is not an old school barbershop, and no doubt about it, the services are high-end. But don’t think there’s any Waterfront Condo/Hoboken Yuppie haughtiness about it, because the staff are sweet as can be and the space couldn’t be any more inviting. There’s a beautiful, spacious lounge when you walk in with big comfy easy chairs, and every wall has a flat screen televisions (always tuned to news or sports). One wall has framed old-school playboy covers, and there’s coffee and refreshments as well.

The Hoboken Man offers haircuts and grooming (the standard cut starts at $39), shaving (hot towel, hot lather, straight razor), facials, manicures and more. Between the setting, the amenities and the little extras, the goal seems to be to provide not just a haircut but a full experience. To that end they also have some special deals and “membership” options that offer unlimited cuts throughout the year. Another nice idea is the father/son package that offers a kids cut (under 12) and an adult cut for one price.

Without a doubt, the place is beautiful, but do they deliver? I thought it might be a good idea to see what they could do with a bunch of different guys. So the staff gathered the men in their lives for a before-and-after photo shoot (included at end of gallery above). The idea was not to go for an extreme make-over or the usual photo shoot make-up, but for a more natural, clean, professional look that’s practical for any man. The guys looked great, and the results should speak for themselves. The models in these photos all had haircuts, shaves and various facial treatments.

The real test for me came this week on grand opening night, as they offered complimentary services to all their guests, so I took advantage of a haircut with Donna, one of their stylists. According to their website, all haircuts include a “consultation,” which at first seemed absurd to me, because I couldn’t imagine what we could possibly consult about–all I wanted was a simple cut, not an extreme make-over. But Donna (and I suspect the rest of the staff from what I heard) was thorough beyond thorough, asking what products I use, how often I have my hair cut, even what kind of work I do (to see if I had to be conservative for a corporate job or if I could have a little more freedom with my style). The shampoo included a nice relaxing scalp massage, there was a second rinse-out after the first cut, and the cut itself was great and exactly what I asked for.

I’d love to say The Hoboken Man is for everyone, but the reality is that’s simply not the case; some men will have no use for the high-end haircut, let alone a manicure or facial. But there’s nothing wrong with a little pampering, even for guys, and no doubt The Hoboken Man is the place for it. For more info including their menu of services and a link to their Facebook page, check out