Photo courtesy of Tend.
A dental chain that is sure to appeal to millennials, and perhaps many others who hate going to the dentist, opened its first location in Washington today. Tender, a New York-based startup, has an aesthetic and feel reminiscent of Varnish Lane, WeWork, and other youth and tech-inclined channels.
The look of the Tend “studios” is inspired by restaurants or spas (cool colors, clean lines). Appointments can be made via an app. And when you book, you can indicate your preferences like which toothpaste flavor you want, or whether you prefer a chatty hygienist or not. There’s a custom sink bar nicknamed “The Brushery” where you can cool off before your date, and a streaming TV setup so you can watch Netflix while all the plaque is cleaned from your teeth (you can also put in queue what you want to watch before the appointment).
CEO Doug Hudson, who founded Hearing Planet (which helps people buy hearing aids), says the chain is also trying other ways to alleviate the more nasty parts of going to the dentist – more tools. silent, for example, and fragrance diffusers to minimize inconvenience. sounds and smells. (The custom scent is ‘Bergamist,’ with citrus and woody notes.) “We just want to make it easier for you,” says Hudson.
The first Tend opened on Capitol Hill. Five additional locations will open later this year at Navy Yard, 14th & U, Downtown, Metro Center and Ballston.