Published 5 January 2006
Springwise, a Trendwatching.com BV company, has started 2006 noting a couple of property-related business trends â€“ one for laundry and the other for DIY car servicing.
In a piece headed Laundry chic, Springwise says laundrettes & drycleaners are often synonymous with sloppy service & harsh chemical treatments, not to mention quit a bit of hassle: “Giving it a spin are New York-based Slate & LaundrySpa, 2 laundrettes/drycleaners offering new-style luxury cleaning and adding a nice dose of convenience & eco-friendliness, too.Slate is an all-inclusive laundry service for New York City residents available through the web. Customers sign up for a weekly flat fee of $US50-60, receive a Slate hamper then choose a pick-up time. “Slate does the sorting and determines which garment needs to be cleaned by which process (anything from hydro-carbon, wet-cleaning, hand washing, to regular laundering). Cleaned clothes come back wrapped, tagged and good as new. The environment also gets a gentler treatment, as the company uses a combination of bio-degradable & organic agents.”In Slate’s own words: “You are dealing with someone who speaks your language. You bought $US250 jeans and you are taking them to be cleaned where? To the run-of-the mill cleaner in his dreary shop down the block, who doesn’t care as much for the clothes as you do? We speak the same language: fashion. When your clothes come back, they are as new as the day you bought them at Barneys. On the surface we are a clothes cleaner, but underneath we are a fashion label.”
Springwise says The Laundry Spa offers a similar, Manhattan-only 48-hour full-service laundry pickup & delivery business, with an even stronger emphasis on pampering valuable threads: “The Laundry Spa is the first service that treats your clothes with the respect, indulgence & pampering they truly deserve”.
Springwise mentions that these services “would work equally well in Sydney, Sao Paulo or any other city with a sizable, moneyed workforce. It also shows that everything can be reinvented: these companies are turning a typically low-cost, last-resort service into a must-have, premium product.”
O’garage Springwise: “Plenty of consumers around the world enjoy tinkering with their cars, preferably surrounded by professional-looking tools & equipment, in a state-of-the-art garage/auto shop. But few urbanites actually own a garage, and suburbanites who do often don’t invest tens of thousands of dollars in garage equipment like bench lifts, transmission jacks & wheel balancers.”The French O’garage has come to the rescue, offering professionally equipped auto repair shops for rent by the hour, or even half an hour, including a bridge, if needed and starting as low as â‚¬10/hour. O’garage offers courses, sandwiches & shower facilities to clean up after particularly messy jobs.