Sometimes a solution is so obvious that it makes you wonder how on earth nobody came up with it before. Wasbar, a brand-new launderette/meeting place, is a fine example: while their dirty laundry spins, the people of Ghent can enjoy a drink with friends or get a new hairdo in one of the two hairdresser’s chairs. The all-in-one concept was elaborated by Pinkeye.
The property that Wasbar occupies was formerly a bookshop. Its worn-out parquet floor was given a fresh coat of lacquer, while the ceiling with its decorative mouldings was left intact. The technical aspect presented the biggest challenge. “A launderette primarily requires plenty of brainwork and preparatory work: you need extra power to keep everything running and we wanted to hide the pipes and wiring from view,” Pinkeye’s creative director Ruud Belmans explains. The pipes and wiring are ensconced in the cellar, leaving just the rows of sleek machines in the space above. There’s nothing about a washing machine which says it has to stand in an unpleasant space.