HAIRDRESSER David Antony proved he is a cut above the rest after his salon won top honours for a second year running at The News’ Hair and Beauty Awards.
More than 200 industry guests packed into the Portsmouth Marriott hotel to see David Antony Hairdressing and Beauty salon – based in Winter Road, Southsea – scoop the best salon prize.
The annual black tie event honours the very best in the area’s hair and beauty industry.
Mr Antony said he was ‘shocked’ and ‘proud’ to scoop the award twice in a row.
He said: ‘We were so pleased to get it last year as we marked our 30th anniversary on the night.
‘Our clients were saying they were going to vote for us this year and I couldn’t see us winning it again, especially after seeing so many more salons entering this year.’
Mr Antony, 50, founded the salon 30 years ago just a few weeks short of his 21st birthday – and the business has been flourishing ever since.
He added: ‘It was just one of my things – I wanted my own salon by the time I was 21 and have been here since.
‘We bought the shop next door seven years ago and knocked the walls through for more space. We’re very much a community salon.
‘We are very approachable with a very easy and relaxed atmosphere, and we are professional. Some of the girls have been here 20 years.
‘They’ve trained as apprentices and gone through the ranks, and we have got a lot of clients who have been coming here for a long time – there’s almost a family feel to the place.
‘It just feels like coming into a friend’s home to have your hair done.
‘Everyone is so welcoming and makes you feel at home.’
He decided his team, including his wife Debbie would travel to the awards in style in a limousine after last year’s success.
‘It makes me very proud to know we have won again’, added Mr Antony.
‘I would like to thank my team and the clients.
‘Without their votes, and without the team putting in a lot of time and work, we wouldn’t have won again.’
Despite a second award, Mr Antony remained coy over hopes for completing a hat-trick next year, adding: ‘Going for it again might bring too much stress!’
There were two more reasons for the salon owner to celebrate on the night. Its beauty technician Sandy Lines was honoured with the beauty therapist of the year award, while receptionist Cherry Scanlan picked up a special achievement award.
Hairdresser Tony Wood also paid a fitting tribute to pioneer Vidal Sassoon, who passed away earlier in May, with a special presentation to start the night.