Best of Best of 2008 Part IV: Shopping and Services (Section 1 of 2)

This is the fourth installment of My Best of the Best Of, where you get the lowdown on both the readers’ and editors’ picks in last week’s SF Weekly. See the introduction here.

And we begin with something I believe I am quite qualified to comment upon:

Shopping & Services

Best Massage: The Barber Lounge
I think this won because it’s “okay” for “men” to “get a massage” at a “place” with the word “barber” in it. Versus of course, the word “exotic” or, say, “spa.” Apologies for the scare quotes. This is indeed a cool place, I did a shoot there once.

I for one get my massages at The Spa, also known as Nob Hill Spa in the Huntington Hotel. But I’m cool with being touched by another person in a sensual, non-sexual way.

Best Manicures/Pedicures: The Barber Lounge
Maybe these men are also getting mani-pedis? That would really be fantastic. I’d probably stop showing my serious disgust upon seeing men in flip-flops.

Best Hair Salon: Dekko
I don’t really know how you can vote for a whole salon, because the cut completely, totally depends on the stylist. Sure, some salons have more good stylists than others, but I know of hole-in-the-wall places with a stylist who’ll give you a cut that will instantly get you a date.

I’m sure Dekko is great, and there are a whole bunch of other salons that are “cool” inside (for the record, I’ll go with the fixie-hipster-riding-favorite Cowboys & Angels, mainly for their choice in art), however, I’m going to vote for the stylist who is truly the best in SF. He’s French, he’s actually the guy that introduced me to Green Apple Books when I was new-ish to the City, he has a degree in fine art (weaving, to be exact), and will give you a cut that looks supaire now and with a nice, long growout period during which it still looks supaire: my dear friend, Monsieur Raphael Herrise. He just recently, finally, opened his new salon.

Best Lingerie Store: Alla Prima / Dark Garden
Like my rule about Italian shoes, I have made a silly rule regarding lingerie. It really must be French. Therefore, Les Cent Culottes is the best. Everything is beautiful. Ask Jack.

Best Men’s Clothing: Macy’s
This is so sad I don’t even know what to say. I mean, Mr. Wilkes Bashford just celebrated a milestone birthday. He is 75! You don’t mess with that. The Wilkes Bashford store is over 40 years old, you don’t mess with that, either. Good God people! Macy’s???

Best Women’s Clothing: Ambiance
I’m not surprised here. I see their shopping bags everywhere. It’s a great boutique. The best? The best is really M A C (Modern Appealing Clothing, banish the thought of that nasty makeup from your head) because Ben and Chris Ospital know style. Period. And they recently started carrying my friend and former client Amy Fink‘s namesake label (pictured, left). Smart.

Best Shoe Store: Shoe Biz
Nope. For sneaker-geeks, the best is HUF (but I wouldn’t go in there if you don’t know what you’re doing). For Italian shoe-fetishists, the best was Dylan (curse you Vintage 415!) and is now Gimme Shoes.


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