Does West Hollywood have an unusual number of dry cleaners, gyms, and salons?
Walking around West Hollywood, it would be easy to assume that the city has an unusual number of dry cleaners, gyms and other fitness businesses, and salons. We wondered if it was true.
According to the most recent count by the US Census Bureau in 2012, West Hollywood had:
- 15 dry cleaners and laundries (excluding laundromats)
- 20 fitness and recreational sports centers
- 60 hair, nail, and skin care salons
That works out to one dry cleaner for every 2,300 residents, one gym/fitness center for every 1,700 residents, and one salon for every 600 residents. Put another way, there were four dry cleaners, six gyms/fitness centers, and 17 salons for every 10,000 residents. Of course, not every customer was a resident and not every resident was a customer of one of these businesses.
Nationally, West Hollywood ranked 14th for dry cleaners/laundries per capita, among places with at least 10,000 residents. The 13 communities with more per capita had smaller populations than West Hollywood. Malibu, which had about 13,000 residents, was eighth on the list. Malibu had five dry cleaners per 10,000 residents versus four in West Hollywood.
In California, West Hollywood was second only to Malibu. The other cities in the top five were South Pasadena, Agoura Hills (near Calabasas), and Burlingame (in the Bay Area).
In this area, Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, and Culver City had half as many dry cleaners/laundries per capita as West Hollywood (two per 10,000 residents versus four). Los Angeles had a fifth as many. All of those cities were above the California average of 3/4 per 10,000 residents.
West Hollywood came in 11th place in the US for fitness and recreational sports centers per capita (excluding places with less than 10,000 residents). The city had six for every 10,000 residents.
The number one city in the US and the state was Irvine. It had eight per 10,000 residents. Two other California cities ranked ahead of West Hollywood: Mill Valley in the Bay Area and Solana Beach in San Diego County. West Hollywood was fourth in the state. Hermosa Beach was number five.
Among nearby cities, West Hollywood (six for every 10,000 residents) finished ahead of Malibu (five), Santa Monica (four), Beverly Hills and Culver City (three), and Los Angeles (one). The number in Los Angeles was close to the state average.
Hair, nail, and skin care salons
West Hollywood fell to 26th place nationally in this category, with 17 salons per 10,000 residents. Places with less than 10,000 residents weren’t counted.
Beverly Hills had twice as many salons per 10,000 residents: 37. It ranked second in the US and first in California. West Hollywood came in second in California. The rest of the state’s top five were Burlingame (Bay Area), Capitola (near Monterey), and Los Gatos (Bay Area).
In this area, Santa Monica had half as many salons per capita as West Hollywood. Culver City and Burbank had roughly a third of West Hollywood’s number. Los Angeles and the California average were both below three salons per 10,000 residents.
Communities with more of all three
West Hollywood was one of only four communities with at least 10,000 residents that ranked in the top 30 nationally for dry cleaners AND gyms/fitness centers AND salons. They were:
- Naples, Florida
- Greenwood Village, Colorado
- West Hollywood, California
- Fairfax, Virginia
Historical number of dry cleaners
The number of dry cleaners in West Hollywood dropped by half over 25 years. There were 33 in 1986, according to the Los Angeles Times. At that point, each dry cleaner served about 1,100 residents. The number of establishments fell to 19 by 2002 and to 15 by 2012. We don’t know how the number has changed since then.