Sure, CHS gets all hot and bothered when the next Capitol Hill dessert boutique opens. But we have love for Hill businesses of all shapes and sizes. Even re-branded, overhauled neighborhood laundromats. Meet your new Lather Daddy:
There are more improvements to come, but we just completed a remodel. We replaced 4 35lb washers (3 of which were no longer working – they were the original machines from the 80s) with 3 45lb and 1 62lb washers. We also added 2 30lb washers, so there are quite a few more big washers than there used to be. They are all top of the line, too, which means that they use fewer utilities, in case people are concerned about being environmentally friendly. One of the neatest things about these machines is that the spin out the load at a 200 g-force. This means that the clothes are a lot dryer at the end of the cycle and that it takes less time to dry their clothing. We also replaced our 4 big dryers (one of which was dead) with 4 double-stack dryers, which means we have doubled our big dryer capacity. Someone told me that the new machines allowed her to do her wash in half the time that she normally did it in. :)
(Images: Lather Daddy)
Owner Tina McManus tells CHS that the overhaul of the laundromat at 1807 12th Ave is still in progress. A fresh coat of paint is done. Next? Music, cable TV and, hey nerd, wireless Internet.
Once those improvements are in place and the new Lather Daddy logo is ready, McManus says you can expect an “Under New Management” party. We suggest a laundry party but, please, buy some new underwear.
McManus tells CHS she came to the laundry business after eight years running the Centerstage Dance Shop in the University District. Given that, it’s not surprising to learn she is also a dancer — a bellydancer to be exact (“Like everybody else on the planet these days,” she writes). Hey, she also makes hats.
McManus explained that Lather Daddy is the result of a search for the right business to not tie her down — it’s Lather Daddy, remember — and the right place to operate that business:
The laundromat business model came to my attention 5 years ago and seemed like a great way to earn a living and not be completely tied down to the business. I sold Centerstage (for a profit – people always seem to assume that when you sell at business, it’s because it’s not doing well, which was not the case) at the end of 2009, and it took me over a year to find a laundromat that passed my due diligence test. Some of my friends came up with the name Lather Daddy, and I immediately wanted to use it for a business, but it seemed to me like it would only work in the right neighborhood, and I figured that Capitol Hill was that neighborhood. It also has a lot of older apartments, so CH has been on my radar since the beginning of my search. Luckily, it all worked out, and I hope that with my previous business experience, I can grow the business and give my customers a great laundry solution.
You can keep track of Lather Daddy’s doings at http://www.facebook.com/LatherDaddy. We’ll also keep you posted on the party. In the meantime, good luck on those new underwear.