Business Ins & Outs: Blues Alley, Bogart, Kate Spade Hit by COVID

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Reeling from COVID-19: Blues Alley at 1073 Wisconsin Ave. NW (in the alley, actually). Georgetowner photo.

Blues Alley’s Future Uncertain

Breaking news from Blues Alley management: “After 55 years in business we find ourselves in a situation completely out of our control. Until further notice, Blues Alley will remain open in the virtual realm only with our streaming series, Speakeasy, on Wednesdays and Thursdays. With no definitive process established nor the ability to forecast a plan to reopen, we will cease all other sales. We are keeping place holders with the artists on their dates in hopes of a triumphant return. All pending purchases will be addressed but we ask for your patience while we reconcile what we are able to fulfill and what must be refunded.

“We thank you for your continued support and ABSOLUTELY LOVE YOU ALL!! Stay safe, and we still hope to see you soon!”

Bogart Hair Salon to Close Aug. 1

“After more than 45 years in Georgetown, Bogart hair salon will close for good on Saturday, Aug. 1,” the business told The Georgetowner. Last year, the second-story industrial modern space overlooking the C&O Canal marked its 40th anniversary at 1063 Wisconsin Ave. NW, after moving from M Street in 1979.

Owner Lee Walters, 74, cited rising rent and the devastating COVID-19 pandemic that shuttered Bogart and many other D.C. businesses during most of the spring, then drastically limited the number of patrons and stylists when he reopened in June.

“This was a painful decision because for more than four decades, we’ve been blessed with an incredibly talented staff and several generations of loyal clients,” said Walters, co-owner of the salon with longtime partner Fernando Ferre-Sacaluga, who died in 2011. “Bogart weathered the 2008 recession, but today, like thousands of small businesses around the country, we could not survive this crisis.”

Kate Spade Not Coming Back?

The plywood remains up since early June and the Kate Spade New York signage is off the building at 3034 M St. NW. Founded in 1993 by Kate and Andy Spade, the business expanded past handbags into clothing and other accessories. It is now owned by Tapesty, Inc., formerly known as Coach. Press inquiries made to Kate Spade management about the Georgetown shop had not gotten a response as of press time.

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