Siracusa has an American-style coin laundry. What a find! We like to travel light, and we don't like to spend days worrying about getting clean laundry. How nice it was to find "lava e asciuga self-service a gettoni." Two carry-on bags of laundry cleaned, dried, and folded in just a little over an hour. And at a price that none of the dry cleaners can come close to.
Mariah Nunn and her partner Davide run Wash and Dry at
Corso Umberto 1, 13
96100 Siracusa (SR)
327 540 6891
Prices as of Sept 2010:
one washload up to 7KG: 3,50 euros
one washload up to 12KG: 6,00 euros
one washload up to 14KG: 7,00 euros
dryers: 1 euro / 6 minutes
Available: detergent, fabric softener, additives, disinfectants, mold remover, color mistake blockers, bags
It is a small place. They are located on Corso Umberto, just before crossing over the water way into Ortigia.
Davide recognized I needed a little help translating my American laundry experience into this Sicilian variation. He spoke English. He got me started by asking my needs and explaining my options. As I was loading my laundry, Davide was called away, and Mariah continued to assist me. What a pleasure. She explained that I had the option of leaving her enough money to cover the dryers; she would transfer the clothes, run the dryers, fold and bag my clothes - for no additional charge. I hesitate to mention it because I don't know if I simply caught them at a good time, but I have reason to believe this is the way they conduct their business. Mariah explained that the coin-operated model is new to Sicilians (to Italians in general?). "Self-service" had been frequently misunderstood. So they extended services in order to ease acceptance. To be able to drop off my clothes, return to sight-seeing, and then return later (at my convenience) - all at a self-service price - was beyond my wildest expectations. Oh, I forgot to mention that Mariah speaks U.S. English. I believe that she was raised in the States; but, as friendly as our conversation was, I don't want to misrepresent what I don't know for sure.
I usually travel for two weeks at at time. I hate the prospect of doing laundry: tracking down a place, figuring out prices, negotiating for a quick turn-around, and generally putting everything on hold until it is done. When in Sicily, it doesn't have to be that way any longer.