Mr. Aris Demetriou founder of Lampousa and

barber extraordinaire!!


One of Lampousa's founding fathers, Mr. Aristides (Aris) Demetriou was born on November 8th, 1910 in our beloved Karavas in the island of Cyprus. By the age of 10 he was helping his dad, a barber in the village, giving hair cuts and shaves to his elementary school teachers! By the age of 15 Mr. Aris owned his own shop, given to him by his father, and started a barber career that would take him from Karavas to New York and span over 85 years!


He immigrated to the United States and came to New York through Ellis Island on February 18th, 1930 and set up a shop in Manhattan at the time of the Great Depression. For three years his shop was located on Amsterdam Avenue and 67th street. Right after that he moved to Amsterdam Avenue and 120th street right across from Columbia University on the Upper West side. He remained in that neighborhood for the next seventy three years! During the 1940s he participated in a number of hairdressing contests and exhibitions. In fact, on our recent visit to Aris' shop, he proudly showed us the medals and trophies he won during those times. During his seven decades of service to the Morningside Heights neighborhood, Aris became a constant fixture in the Columbia University's newspaper Spectator and a beloved personality among students and professors.


Mr. Demetriou maintained an extraordinarily active work lifestyle that included reporting to work from his home in New Jersey by 7am, five days-a-week. During one of our visits in February 2006, in a span of one hour,  Mr. Aris personally gave haircuts to four Columbia University students, run outside to feed the meter for his parked car and in-between recounted the great many memories of the neighborhood since the 1930s.


On March 30th, 2006 Mr. Aris Demitriou officially retired and sold his shop to another entrepreneur after a remarkable seventy six-year career in New York. In fact, considering that his career really started way back in the Karavas years when he was 10, Aris Demetriou might as well have been the world's oldest living and longest serving barber (at his retirement), a feat that should land him in the World Guinness Book of Records!!

Aris is one of the founders of The Cyprus Federation of America in 1951 and our church St. John The Theologian Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Tenafly, New Jersey in 1968. 

Aris founded Lampousa in 1937 and since then he has been a constant inspiration for all of us here in the organization. Throughout the years Aris and his wife Maroulla, have been constant participants to all the Lampousa and greater Greek Omogenia events. He has served as president of our organization twice for a total of 16 years. In retirement, Aris had continued to participate very actively to all our events and many  meetings. A big party on November 7th, 2010 celebrated Aris' 100th birthday. He passed away on November  27th, 2010. He will be dearly missed!


At work giving a hair cut to a young customer in early 2006

His shop became an institution in the greater Columbia University community for over seventy years!

Mr. Aris' legendary shop on Amsterdam and 120th street in 2006.

A number of trophies and mementos from a different era adorned the walls of the shop


NY Times article on Aris Demetriou

Oldest Barber in the World

Greek News Article on Aris Demetriou