SNOHOMISH, Wash. — The state-of-the-art Snohomish Laundry Co. recently opened in the downtown historic district, garnering high praise from local customers, says equipment distributor Western State Design.
The brand-new Laundromat is actually the reincarnation of a laundry of the same name previously located in Snohomish Square on Avenue D for the past eight years. The popular original store outgrew its space and was relocated to a building offering more than double the space a little over a mile away, allowing for additional amenities to provide an even better customer experience. Plus, there is plenty of on-premise parking.
Centrally located within walking distance to shopping and restaurants, and across from City Hall, Snohomish Laundry has a striking storefront that beckons passersby to stop in and take a closer look.
The equally distinctive interior has clean, contemporary lines and decor, including granite countertops, upholstered chairs, elegant light fixtures, a high open ceiling and warmly burnished floor, as well as neat rows of modern, stainless steel commercial laundry machines.
If the designers wanted customers to feel like they were walking into a chic, local cafe rather than a Laundromat, they succeeded.
IT’S ALL RELATIVE
Snohomish Laundry Co. is one of two Laundromats owned by Jay, Scott and Tod Johnson, along with Bobbi Jo (BJ) Trim—all family members. The other store is Monroe Laundry, 8 miles away; Tod Johnson owns a third distinctive laundry, Tolt Laundry Co., in Carnation, Wash., 18 miles from Monroe.
The original design work at Snohomish was created by distinguished local architect Alan Wittenbaugh and updated most recently by another family member, Dale McLam. His work exemplifies Snohomish Laundry’s mission statement: “Our customers deserve a clean, safe, comfortable environment!”
The family members each bring a different skill set to the table. Jay, who says he’s retired, has a background in operations, marketing and retail. Tod owned a commercial construction company, an industry in which his son, Scott, honed his construction skills as project manager. Tod’s daughter, BJ, has a background in office management and bookkeeping and is the operations manager for both Snohomish Laundry and Monroe Laundry.
“I’m constantly amazed by my business partners,” says Jay Johnson. “I’m incredibly lucky to be able to work with such talented people and that we actually like each other.”
Not only have the owners benefited from collaboration within their talented family, they have also benefited from the expertise of Western State Design. Over the years, starting with Tolt Laundry, the Johnson brothers have worked closely with WSD’s local laundry specialist—currently Rick Hall—to determine the best mix of laundry equipment, among other key considerations.
AMENITIES GALORE AND COINLESS
Clearly, Snohomish Laundry is not a dreary, old-style Laundromat. Not only is it a clean, safe and comfortable environment, the store offers many amenities aimed at making it as conveniently functional as possible for customers.
There is an attendant on duty every day from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. to provide help when needed. The laundry also offers a wash ’n’ fold service, two flatscreen TVs (including free digital service), free Wi-Fi plus an Internet station with USB ports and phone charging. There is also a comfortable play area for children, an ATM, and vending machines offering name-brand laundry products, in addition to food and snacks, including Starbucks packaged drinks.
Snohomish Laundry is completely coinless. All commercial washers and dryers are activated using the original Dexter Easy Card System, which functions similarly to a debit card. Customers purchase an Easy Card by inserting cash ($1-$20 bills) into the dispensing machine. Customers then use their card to activate a washer or dryer, the cost of which is deducted from the card’s remaining balance. When the balance becomes too low to activate a laundry machine, the customer simply returns to the Easy Card Center to reload it.
The Easy Card system has several advantages over cash, the owners say. For starters, coins don’t get stuck in the laundry machines, putting them out of commission temporarily. Customers can benefit from Snohomish Laundry’s “Frequent Dryer Miles” program which allows them to earn credits toward discounts and free services. They can also benefit from seasonal and weekly specials that are automatically programmed into the washers and dryers. Finally, a customer’s Easy Card provides access to the locked in-store restrooms, which helps ensure safety and cleanliness.
In Tuesday’s conclusion: Well-equipped, with an attention to detail