Golden Crown Barber Shop
It’s early morning. As stations and razors are groomed by the seasoned hands of barbering veterans, the men of Golden Crown Barber Shop prepare for the work day ahead. Tucked within the corner of Golden Lantern and Crown Valley, a line of eager patrons forms behind closed shop doors.
Cory Danger is the owner and manager of Golden Crown Barber Shop. His love for barbering continues to expand through the opening of Barber Supply, Orange County’s premier barber supply shop. With a wide range of clientele, from business owners to students, Cory has received overwhelming success within the neighborhood.
Cory’s goal is to create a sense of community within Golden Crown Barber Shop, for it to be a place where people can slow down and relax, even as they wait for a cut. We sit down with Cory to explore his inspirations, barbering in Orange County, and life inside the shop.
Please tell us about yourself and what you do at Golden Crown Barber Shop.
My name’s Cory. I own Golden Crown Barber Shop. I’m a barber, owner-operator. What I do is provide our neighborhood with a solid barber shop experience.
What inspired you to found Golden Crown Barber Shop?
Well, I’ve been barbering for almost nine years. Once I got comfortable with my trade and was confident in my ability, I felt, naturally, the next step was to open up my own shop.
Are you an Orange County native?
For the most part. I moved here when I was ten years old. I was born in North Carolina ― I happened to move around a lot as a kid. But once we moved here [Mission Viejo], we never left.
Why open business in this particular location?
This is pretty much where I grew up. I lived in Dana Point throughout high school, and this is kind of, like, the hub. I used to deliver pizzas at the pizza joint across the street. Now I’m grown and I’m married with children of my own. We live right across the street — it was just the best place to open this shop.
How would you explain the perfect Golden Crown Barber Shop experience?
I think our experience is a little unique. We’re very fortunate that we’re a busy shop. As a walk-in only, we get a lot of people coming in here. The experience expands beyond the haircut itself ― it really is a social gathering. Whether we’re watching a movie or listening to the music, everyone that’s waiting gets in on the action.
Are you inspired by the people who come through your shop?
Absolutely! I think we’re fortunate in this area. We have a wide range of clientele; people that are in the music industry, entertainment industry, Fortune 500 companies, small business owners, kids, single moms and dads. The whole gamut of clientele really is awesome.
How has Golden Crown Barber Shop evolved since opening its doors?
Oh man — it’s taken off like a rocket [laughs]. We opened as a one man show. We now have five chairs and we’re running five full time barbers, seven days a week. I really didn’t expect this type of growth in the first three years. But it’s been amazing. The shop has totally evolved beyond what I ever thought it would be.
Could you take us through the first few years of building?
It was a learning experience, to say the least. I had worked in several different barber shops. The one I was in before opening this shop had a little bit of an older clientele; I was definitely the youngest barber by twenty-some years. I hadn’t really experienced the scene of barbering yet. There was a much younger crowd getting into it. Haircuts began evolving through hair salons and I think people have come back to barbers expecting the same quality. When I opened the shop, I was getting all this awesome feedback from people my age and younger; coming in, checking it out, watching it grow.
What’s your most memorable moment at Golden Crown Barber Shop?
That’s a difficult one. Personally, some of my most memorable moments are after hours. Having the opportunity to own my own shop, I can provide services for friends and family and people beyond the hours of operation. I really get some of my proudest moments when it’s after hours, that’s when I get to cut my kids’ hair. I had a family member who went through some health issues and I got to shave his head. That was a private moment. To have it within my shop gave me a sense of pride ― it was something awesome.
What’s a typical day like for you?
[Laughs] I’m a total workaholic. I have the barber shop, I’m in the process of opening a barber supply, and I also co-produce the tattoo and music festival here in orange County. My morning consists of checking emails before I get out of bed, then getting the kids ready for school, checking a few more emails, and hopefully cramming as many errands in before 10:00AM (before I open the shop). The day from there is pretty much cutting hair and checking on all my other operations.
What do you love about your shop and the neighbors you see daily?
I love the support I’ve gained from the neighborhood and I love that people come in and take ownership of it. It’s gotten to the point where if someone comes in and there is a long line I don’t even have to explain to them how long the wait is or that it is worth the wait. The customers chime in and convince new people to sit down — without me having to say anything. It’s a really cool thing.
What do you hope people take away from a visit to Golden Crown Barber Shop?
I hope they take away a sense of community. I hope they maybe slow down their day a little bit — I know I’m guilty of it in this day and age. We are all running around so fast and we are all looking for instant gratification, you know? We have the internet and everything at the palm of our hands. I hope that the traditional and old school feel of the barber shop kind of just slows people down.
Looking forward, what’s in the works for Golden Crown Barber Shop?
Like I mentioned, I’m in the process of opening a men’s grooming and barber supply about five doors down from the barber shop. That’s really what my focus is on. I think there is a need for it and a want for it — I’m really excited to get the doors open and see how people like it.
Are you inspired by Orange County?
Absolutely. I think Orange County is a great place to live. It’s a running joke in the shop, every day I say, “look at beautiful Laguna Niguel, it’s sunny, it’s great and we live where people vacation.” It’s important to take advantage of that. I think its an amazing place.
28971 Golden Lantern Ste A-105, Laguna Niguel, CA 92677