At Franklin Auto Spa in Frazer, you'll find all your typical car-wash staples. Hoses, wax, towels, and of course, a customer lounge with sofas, a flat-screen TV, and free coffee and wifi internet. The basics.
And on Saturday, you'll also find Philadelphia Soul cheerleaders and 92.5 WXTU FM. And Ben Franklin posing for photos.
Owner Dominic Paranzino quietly opened the business, located at 535 Lancaster Ave., in March as an upscale car wash, but the grand opening is Saturday. The event will include discounted washes and concert ticket giveaways.
"We're expecting possibly 1,000 cars [Saturday], which would be about two cars a minute," he said. "I hired a valet service, because I can only fit about 15 cars out here. We're doing face-painting, people can get their pictures taken with Ben Franklin, so I think people are going to want to hang out."
Paranzino previously worked at a car wash in Huntingdon Valley and sold chemicals to other washes in the region.
"I visited this car wash [last year, when it was Duke's Firehose], trying to sell them chemicals. I saw how run down it was, so I put together an investment group and bought it," he said. "We put about $1 million into renovating it."
There are about 15 employees now, many of whom are summer workers. Paranzino is looking to hire more long-term employees for the positions of cashiers, towel dryers and service advisors (aka greeters).
"From clunkers to stretch limousines, we can handle anything," Paranzino said. "We just can't wash duallies—pickup trucks with two tires in the back. Our conveyor is setup for oversized tires, though."
The business also features a "suds blaster" soap guns that children can use to squirt cars going through the wash.
Franklin Auto Spa is located at 535 Lancaster Ave. in Frazer, and is open Monday to Saturday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sundays 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Paranzino hopes to expand the hours to 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. eventually.