It would be an utterly untruthful to claim that I don't always have some sort of plan in the works, but the desire to try a new spot simply isn't as vivid at the thought of GOT7's impending concert. Tacking onto that would be the currently depressing downtime otherwise known as unemployment.
These were, without a doubt, renowned names to food enthusiasts of the downtown core. Alas, as the fastidious feasting creatures we were, few of the items on offer were deemed all that appealing. We made a beeline for Buster's, avoiding the sugar-laden cheesecakes on a stick and diabetes-inducing french toast creations altogether.
The Yorkdale pop-up had a menu consisting of five (presumably) signature sandwiches, five varieties of soft shell Seafood Tacos, and dessert in the form of homemade Key Lime Pie. We steered clear of the tacos, opting for an Atlantic Lobster Roll and Shrimp & Crab Sando to satisfy our post-Uniqlo appetite.
Investigation results concluded that Hair Bank had operated for slighly over one year, and that all recounts were highly positive.
The second floor salon was a mere two minutes from the cozy gelato/coffee shop hybrid. I pulled open the flimsy wooden door and was greeted warmly by the receptionist upon entry.
Functioning similarly to NC Salon, guests had the option of stashing personal belongings in medium-sized lockers. The key was left with patrons such that their items could be retrieved personally at the end of the session.
The owner and stylist, Jay, was extremely patient in assisting customers with their requests. He worked with extreme precision, clarifying details of the desired cut, even confirming the precise shape of bangs before proceeding. Also provided were recommendations and expertise on how to mediate hair concerns such as thinning and colouring damage.
A triangular foam sponge utilized at the end of the session to brush away fallen bits of hair
The setup was amusing to behold at first: the chairs were padded but not mechanically operated. They bore an appearance similar to a meeting room chairs but retained the hidden ability to tilt back with aid of hydraulics.
Water temperature was on the cooler side, though still comfortable and eventually warmed to an acceptable level. The faucet was closer to the scalp than preferred, and water entered my ears on several ocassions. Substituted in place of the shampoo-rinse-repeat theory was a combo of 1.5 rounds of shampoo and 1 round of conditioner followed by a brief scalp massage. It was interesting to see the stylist take hairwashing into his own hands instead of leaving it with a separate member of staff.
Another factor to note would be the innovative design of the hair-cutting gowns. A transparent pocket could be found in the middle of the gown, where customers' hands generally rest if not engaged in clicking/swiping activities. While I am unsure whether this was to allow easier access to smartphones during services, it was a design element garnering approval. The password-secured Wi-Fi network was also stable and speedy.
Hair Bank is run by a young, friendly husband-wife duo. Though, the staff consisted of one more lady, who assisted with passive tasks such as hair treatments and perms.
Two customers that had arrived for service after me were treated with the same, unchanging patience and respect, which only leads me to instil confidence in the small team even more.
Conveniently located nearby were Hodo Kwaja and P.A.T.; hoddeok and a custard taiyaki from Kevin's Taiyaki were obtained minutes before embarking the thorny return trip through rush hour.