A Close Shave with Eviction for Wes Anderson’s Favorite Houston Barber Shop

That little 84-year-old barber shop spot at 219 E. 11th St. in the Heights featured in Wes Anderson’s movie Rushmore has survived an eviction scare. Proprietor Doug Dreher tells the Houston Press‘s Dianna Wray that a Saturday-night email from the building’s landlord, J. Conti Interests, assured him that Doug’s Barber Shop wouldn’t be kicked out: “Dreher remembered dropping off the October rent check before going out of town for a few weeks. When he got back to town, just before the end of the month, he was notified that his business, located at 219 East 11th Street, was being evicted in two weeks.


Dreher acknowledged that his employees failed to relay the messages left by representatives from J. Conti Interests LLC, but he was hoping they could still work something out. He was worried a legal issue between one of his employees and the company, over a fall outside the barbershop, might make working things out more difficult, he said, but things were resolved more easily than he’d expected.

Photos: Yelp (interior); Hamilton Shirts (exterior)

10 Comment

  • That place is a trip! Doug is a very nice guy.

  • Favorite movie filmed in Houston by Far!

  • I’m confused. Is Doug a barber or a brain surgeon?

  • If he dropped off the check why was he going to be evicted?

  • Commercial lessees take note: negotiate so that your lease gives you a grace period for rent and/or requires the landlord to give you notice that rent has not arrived. If you’re leasing from Weingarten or another entity with thousands of commercial properties you’re obviously out of luck, but in this situation, it probably saved the barber’s lease and business.

  • Darn… I’m certainly happy they are not closing since I’m there all the time, but the free advertising on Swamplot will probably now extend my wait times for a cut! I’ve been going for years and still find something new on the walls with each visit.

  • How people are still “dropping off rent” in 2013 is beyond me. We still have a few tenants that do that and it drives me nuts. There are so may chances for error (like this), not to mention a tremendous amount of overhead in entering all the various rent payments into some type of system, going to the bank and doing deposits, etc.
    The technology for online payments is readily available to everyone. We’ve done it from day 1 (about 6+ years ago). While it’s a benefit for the tenants, it’s even a greater benefit to the landlord.

  • I have a multi-unit retail business in the greater Houston area, and I can tell you that Regency is (sadly) the only landlord we have with an online pay system.

  • I rent an apartment in the Heights from J. Conti Interests. Anyone ever heard of them? I have to drop off a paper check 3 blocks from my apartment to them every month. They sure do cash them quickly though!

  • What I heard was that one of the barbers tripped on the sidewalk outside the strip center and sued, and Doug didn’t know about this (out of town), hence confusion/ misunderstanding. Suit apparently has been dropped, rent was raised, and all is well.