I made it a point to never live in an apartment that didn’t have a washer and dryer in the building when, but I might have been a little more lenient in my requirements had something like Wasbar, the Belgian laundromat and cafe, existed around here when I was still renting. Think about it: all those hours spent doing laundry, waiting for each load to finish and fighting for the good machines, could have passed much more enjoyably if you’d had a beer in your hand. Owners Dries Henau and Yuri Vandenbogaerde went to great lengths to make Wasbar not only new and different, but also inviting, instead of sterile and cold like most laundromats, by using up-cycled materials and hiding all the plumbing and piping in the basement. The result is a long row of sleek washing machines, all bearing women’s names (Mona, Jacqueline, Lisette) while the dryers have men’s (Jacob, Albert, Jules). Wasbar’s logo? A clothespin crossed with a bottle opener. What’s Flemish for “charming”?
Next time I’m in Belgium, I’m going.