Aug. 4, 2022 By Czarinna Andres
A popular barbershop that was established in Long Island City in 2014 has opened its fourth venue—this one in Williamsburg.
Otis & Finn, a LGBT owned barbershop that has two locations in Long Island City, opened its second Brooklyn location last month at 154 Grand St. in Williamsburg. The other Brooklyn location is in Greenpoint.
The shop is owned by couple Shawn Dixon and Kirk Riley, who opened their first Otis & Finn barbershop at 45-22 Pearson St. in Court Square in November 2014. Two years later, they expanded and opened another shop in Long Island City, at 11-11 44th Road, to serve a growing clientele. Riley remains the head barber of the 44th Road shop.
The duo’s aim from the get-go has been to create an environment that is more than a place for men simply to get a haircut. They seek to create a community hangout where people can relax. Their barbershops, for instance, are known for offering free shots of bourbon.
“Our vision has always been to build unique, whimsical spaces designed to make our clients feel welcome and free to be themselves when they’re here, particularly those folks who may have felt shut out from barbershops because of the perception of the culture,” Dixon said.
Dixon says he promotes the barbershops as being for everyone, whether it be a drag queen to a CEO. He said that he wants everyone to feel welcome and appreciated, and maybe learn something new while sipping on a bourbon, which is offered with every service.
“We are redefining what it means to be a barbershop,” Dixon said, who said that his four shops collectively see over 3,000 clients a month.