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Sponsored by Monday Properties and written by ARLnow, Startup Monday is a weekly column that profiles Arlington-based startups, founders, and other local technology news. Monday Properties is proudly featuring 1515 Wilson Blvd in Rosslyn.

A Rosslyn-based online interior design startup is celebrating one year and more than 100 projects.

Deazly, launched in July 2021, brings professional design to homeowners in an online design studio. The company matches homeowners looking to renovate their kitchen or bathrooms with professional designers, who work with them to create 3D concepts of the space for a flat fee.

Homeowners can then see how their room will look before committing to a project.

“For most homeowners, hiring an interior designer can feel intimidating,” CEO and Founder Ketan Doiphode, a licensed architect, said in a news release. “It is a difficult process to navigate.”

So, he said he built Deazly to bridge the knowledge gap on the homeowner side and technological gap on the design side. His goal is to provide affordable, hassle-free design services. And for designers, it’s an opportunity to work 100% remotely.

Deazly clients tend to be 30 to 45 years old, tech-savvy and want good design completed at a fast pace, Doiphode said. And 60% of the company’s work comes directly from contractor partners and remodeling companies, the release said.

Contractors have a competitive advantage by having a design partner.

“The Deazly process provides the consultation needed to work through style preferences and functional requirements,” Doiphode said. “Highly realistic 3D designs and a product list ensure the homeowner and contractor can work together to make the design of these high-use spaces a reality.”

Ketan Doiphode, founder of Deazly (courtesy of Deazly)

While there are other e-design businesses, Deazly specializes in kitchens and bathrooms — both generally complex renovation projects that greatly contribute to resale value of homes. When the startup first launched, it offered just bathroom design but in January, the company added kitchen design services, as well.

Deazly’s flat fee structure, listed on its website as a range between $700 to $2,300 based on the extent of services, is something the company says sets it apart from traditional designers’ fees.

The Deazly team has seven U.S.-based interior designers and eight support team members in India, the release said.

“I see Deazly as an example of the modern workforce,” says Doiphode. “Designers often work long hours at firms and the conceptual, more creative part of the design process is led by directors and principals. At Deazly, the designers are involved in the visual and creative aspects. The 100% virtual team structure allows designers to create a flexible schedule. I can match homeowners with the right designer based on the designer’s availability.”

Doiphode was inspired to start the company from his 18 years of architecture and project management experience. He worked for the brand design team at Marriott International, where he worked on lifestyle brands that included Delta Hotels, Sheraton, Marriott Hotels, Aloft, and AC hotels. He has also worked as an interior architect for the firms SOM and Forrest Perkins.

Doiphode hopes to grow the Deazly design team and is working on a new version of the website that will add detailed project milestones and a two-way communication platform for homeowners’ remodeling and renovation process.

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Storm clouds over Ballston on Thursday afternoon (staff photo)

It’s going to be a hot end to the week.

We hope everyone plans to stay hydrated, as the temperatures this weekend are expected to reach the upper 90s. It’s going to be sunny and hot tomorrow (Saturday), with a high near 97 and a heat index value into the triple digits. And Sunday will be mostly sunny with a high near 99.

Now, as you contemplate ways to beat the heat, here are the most-read Arlington articles of the past week.

  1. Alexandria double murder suspect was released from jail in Arlington earlier this year
  2. Possible abduction attempt near Ballston
  3. Retired Marine Corps general facing brandishing charge in Arlington
  4. Ground stop at National Airport after report of drone in the area
  5. Longtime Greek restaurant Athena Pallas is planning to close in Crystal City
  6. The Arlington County Fair is returning next month
  7. Only fireworks found after shots fired call at Washington-Liberty HS leads to lockdown
  8. Arlington’s top prosecutor sticks to reforms despite crime concerns
  9. Officials say new pickleball courts are coming as players rally for more county support
  10. Man arrested after alleged shopping spree with credit cards swiped from building lobby

Feel free to discuss these stories or anything else of local interest in the comments. Enjoy the weekend!

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The Clarendon Ballroom, which is set to reopen (staff photo by Jay Westcott)

Happy Friday Arlington!

We hope you find some things to do this weekend, but pack an umbrella as it looks like there’s a chance of thunderstorms each day.

Now, here are the most-read Arlington articles of the past week.

  1. Juan Soto has a new house (somewhere) in Arlington
  2. EXCLUSIVE: The Clarendon Ballroom is back, with a new interior, rooftop deck and a slightly different name
  3. Arlington sets record after again ranking No. 1 on American Fitness Index
  4. Is River Place’s time coming to an end in Rosslyn?
  5. New empanada restaurant coming to Columbia Pike
  6. Three arrested after a spate of men exposing themselves in various parts of Arlington
  7. Arlington’s first medical cannabis dispensary is opening in Clarendon
  8. Police investigating armed mugging in Courthouse
  9. County Board discusses “missing middle” housing proposal amid roiling community debate
  10. Arlington office vacancy rate continues to rise amid work-from-home trends

Feel free to discuss these stories or anything else of local interest in the comments. Enjoy the weekend!

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Sponsored by Monday Properties and written by ARLnow, Startup Monday is a weekly column that profiles Arlington-based startups, founders, and other local technology news. Monday Properties is proudly featuring 1515 Wilson Blvd in Rosslyn. 

During the pandemic, people relied on technology for everything from food delivery to working from home. And now, people want that kind of convenience for fitness, says a Ballston-based startup.

The past couple of years have put a spotlight on what SweatWorks has been working toward, company spokeswoman Claire Evans says.

“It kind of highlighted how much everyone needed to do more outside of the gym, how connected fitness, how that whole ecosystem came together and we’ve been working with brands on that whole omnichannel approach to connected fitness,” she said. “So everything from how do you keep your members engaged when they’re at home but also at the gym, what are those touch points and what does that look like for a business.”

SweatWorks CEO Mohammed Iqbal often says that a workout lasts for an hour a day but there are 23 other hours to consider how to improve fitness and wellness, Evans said.

SweatWorks CEO Mohammed Iqbal (courtesy of SweatWorks)

Working with brands like SoulCycle, Equinox, CityRow and others, SweatWorks tailors tech for fitness companies, providing everything from membership insights to connected fitness software.

“We don’t want to be a one box solution,” Evans said. “We don’t just want to say ‘this is the answer’… That is what really makes us really unique.”

SweatWorks has built everything from software to analyze membership data, like how often someone is using a fitness program and how to improve those numbers, to providing technology that gives users real-time workout data, like heart rate and recovery information. It builds everything from hardware to software, like the tablet on Beachbody bike by Myx, where the device and all its content was created by SweatWorks, Evans said.

“We often say [clients] come to us and they think they know what they want and they’re like ‘we need this,'” Evans said, but they go through a process with the company to figure out their needs. “Then we will deliver on an output and it’s not always what they really think they need and then we can actually pick lots of other elements they might require.”

The completely remote company just celebrated its 10th anniversary, and has grown to 165 employees internationally, working with about 15 clients, Evans said. SweatWorks has seen 3% revenue growth over last year and 60% compounding growth since 2018, she said.

And it was recently named a finalist for DCA Live’s Red Hot Companies 2022, which recognizes the region’s fastest growing companies. (An event recognizing the Red Hot honorees is scheduled for next Wednesday, July 20, in Rosslyn.)

“For us being on the list is awesome, I mean it’s the recognition on a very local level,” Evans said. “It means a lot, Moh lives in Arlington, he loves living there. He’s really passionate about being in that area.”

Iqbal started the company through his passion for health and fitness and is “totally driven by how you can use data to make meaningful change in your health and wellness,” Evans said.

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All About Burger space cleared out at Ballston Quarter (staff photo)

We hope those who had time off enjoyed the holiday-shortened work week.

With any luck, many of you crossed some summer activities off your list, given that we’re nearing the halfway point of the Memorial Day-to-Labor Day season.

Now, here are the most-read Arlington articles of the past week.

  1. Police investigating shooting in Green Valley
  2. Arlington and Alexandria residents asked to be on the lookout for the invasive spotted lanternfly
  3. An Arlington Little League team hits and pitches its way to states and into local history
  4. Chase, carjacking and mass airbag theft reported during weekend of vehicular mayhem in Arlington
  5. Arlington is back to fully celebrating July 4 for the first time since 2019
  6. All About Burger is all but gone in Ballston Quarter
  7. Sense of Place Cafe in Arlington Forest has closed
  8. Amazon Fresh is now open in Crystal City
  9. Two workers seriously injured after electrical incident at condo building
  10. More storms expected today, after weekend storm fells numerous trees in Arlington

Feel free to discuss these stories or anything else of local interest in the comments. Enjoy the weekend — or at least the non-rainy potion of it!

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Tourists visit the US Air Force Memorial at twilight (staff photo by Jay Westcott)

Another three-day weekend awaits.

Arlington is a great place to be if you want to catch the fireworks display in D.C., whether from up close or afar.

This week also marked the end of June, which brought some most-read stories of its own. They included roaming bears, more corporate headquarters relocating here and a man worried about an active shooter who tried to break into a middle school.

It’s been a busy month, and we hope you get a chance to relax and enjoy this Fourth of July.

Now, here are the most-read Arlington articles of the past week.

  1. Another accidental shooting, this time in Clarendon
  2. ACPD: Girl arrested for shoplifting escaped, bit officer after foot chase
  3. Local Oyster in Ballston appears to have closed, after another seafood spot ran aground
  4. Arlington is back to fully celebrating July 4 for the first time since 2019
  5. Woman pleads guilty to opioid conspiracy run out of Arlington doctor’s office
  6. Man rescued after being buried up to shoulders in trench collapse
  7. Loud cars, loud cars, ACPD is coming for you (eventually)
  8. Ultramarathoner Michael Wardian is almost back in Arlington, after journey across America
  9. Tow truck driver helps to talk down man standing on edge of overpass
  10. Fashion store LOFT at The Crossing Clarendon to close next month

Feel free to discuss these stories or anything else of local interest in the comments. Enjoy the weekend, Arlington!

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Voting at Swanson Middle School in Westover in November 2021 (staff photo by Jay Westcott)

(Updated at 4:40 p.m.) The ballot for the general election has been set, with three races to be decided by local voters.

Multiple candidates for Arlington County Board, School Board and the 8th Congressional District have qualified for the ballot. The first day of in-person early voting is Friday, Sept. 23 and the last day to register to vote is Monday, Oct. 17, according to Arlington’s election office.

8th Congressional District

In the 8th Congressional District Democratic primary, incumbent Rep. Don Beyer overcame challenger Victoria Virasingh. Beyer goes on to the general election to face the GOP nominee, Arlington resident Karina A. Lipsman, and independent candidate Teddy Fikre.

The seat for the 8th District, which encompasses Arlington, Alexandria, the City of Falls Church and parts of Fairfax County, has been held by a Democrat for decades. Beyer won a crowded primary for former Congressman Jim Moran’s seat in 2014 and the general election later that year.

Lipsman was nominated “to take on the progressive establishment,” said an email from the Arlington GOP after the nomination.

Lipsman, who is originally from Ukraine, outlines priorities such as supporting law enforcement, opposing tax increases, stopping illegal immigration and her stance against abortion on her website. She says she supports school choice and community colleges, technical schools and vocational training programs.

Among issues Beyer lists on his campaign website are climate change, housing, immigration, gun violence prevention, the federal workforce and others.

Fikre’s website says he is an IT project manager with an MBA from Johns Hopkins University, cares about inclusive justice and “implementing policies that restore fairness in America and enacting laws that are rooted in love.” Among issues he’s focused on are making taxes voluntary for the working, middle and upper-middle-class, as well as forgiving all student loans.

Arlington County Board

Three familiar names are up for consideration for a County Board seat. Incumbent Matt de Ferranti was not challenged for the Democratic nomination.

During his tenure on the board, de Ferranti says he has focused on Covid response, racial equity and priorities like affordable housing, hunger, climate change and school funding.

Two independent candidates will also be on the ballot — and not for their first time — seeking a seat.

Independent Adam Theo, who is vice president of the Ballston-Virginia Square Civic Association, is running on a platform of expanding government accountability, prioritizing public safety and making housing affordable. Theo describes himself as “a fierce non-partisan free-thinking ‘progressive libertarian.'” He was previously deployed to eastern Afghanistan while serving in the Air Force Reserve as a civil engineer.

This is Theo’s second time running for the County Board in as many years. Last year, he ran in a crowded County Board race for the seat that Democrat Takis Karantonis occupies.

Civic activist Audrey Clement is also running as an independent, seeking to reduce taxes, stop up-zoning, and preserve parks, trees and historic places. She said on her website she’s running “because the Board has pushed harmful policies resulting in: overcrowded schools, gentrification, loss of green space, and a 10 year average annual effective tax rate increase that is twice the rate of inflation.”

The Westover resident has been a perennial candidate over the last decade or so and says she believes once people realize the ‘Missing Middle’ housing push will rezone some neighborhoods, they will support a candidate like her.

Arlington School Board

After some commotion surrounding the Democratic endorsement for the School Board seat up for grabs, only two names will be on the ballot: James Vell Rives and Bethany Sutton.

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Around Rosslyn (staff photo by Jay Westcott)

Grab your rainbow flags, the Arlington Pride Festival is this weekend.

The free event is set to run from noon to 7 p.m. tomorrow (Saturday) at Rosslyn’s Gateway Park at 1300 Langston Blvd. It’s expected to feature games, vendors, live entertainment, DJs and a dog park area and kids play section.

D.C. held its big Capital Pride festival and parade earlier this month for the first time in three years. So, if you missed it, here’s your chance to celebrate locally.

Now, here are the most-read Arlington articles of the past week.

  1. Westover staple The Forest Inn, one of Arlington’s last dive bars, is closing
  2. Arlington man develops app to explore D.C. in clue-solving game
  3. Photos: The newspaper-stealing fox has returned
  4. Police: Thieves stole luxury cars after entering homes, taking keys
  5. Victoria Virasingh: Why You Should Vote for Me
  6. Catalytic converter thefts are on the rise in Arlington
  7. ‘Missing middle’ proposal prompts intense debate, competing signs at County Board meeting
  8. A $10 million revamp of Army Navy Drive is a couple of months away
  9. Black Parents of Arlington raises new concerns over APS performance gaps
  10. County Board approves sidewalk, crosswalk projects in four neighborhoods

Feel free to discuss these stories or anything else of local interest in the comments. Enjoy the weekend, Arlington!

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(Updated at 1:50 p.m.) Today is the last chance Arlingtonians have to vote in the Democratic primary for the U.S. House of Representatives.

In-person voting is underway for the 8th Congressional District Democratic primary, in which incumbent Rep. Don Beyer faces political newcomer and Arlington resident Victoria Virasingh.

As of 9 a.m., Election Day turnout was just 1% so far, according to the Arlington County elections office. By 1:30 p.m. it was up to 3%. With early voting and mail ballots, turnout is around 7% of registered voters total.

Virasingh, a daughter of immigrants, was born and raised in Arlington and is active with the Arlington County Democratic Committee. She was previously part of Communities in Schools at Barcroft Elementary School. Her professional resume includes work for Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), the IRS Criminal Investigations Unit, and tech company Palantir.

Virasingh’s website lists some campaign priorities as housing for all, equity in education, securing a living wage and Medicare for all.

Beyer has held onto the 8th District — which also includes Alexandria, the City of Falls Church and parts of Fairfax County — since he won a crowded primary for former Congressman Jim Moran’s seat in 2014 and the general election later that year.

Among issues Beyer lists on his campaign website are climate change, housing, immigration, gun violence prevention, the federal workforce and others.

The winner will face any non-Democratic candidates in November, including GOP-nominated Arlington resident Karina Lipsman.

How to vote

Any voter can cast a ballot in the Democratic primary, regardless of party affiliation, because Virginia is an open primary state. The deadline to register to vote, or update an existing registration, was May 31.

Polling locations are open until 7 p.m. Voters must cast their ballots at their assigned location, which can be found on the Virginia elections website.

If mailing a ballot, it must be postmarked no later than today or delivered in person today, according to the Arlington County elections website.

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Sponsored by Monday Properties and written by ARLnow, Startup Monday is a weekly column that profiles Arlington-based startups, founders, and other local technology news. Monday Properties is proudly featuring 1515 Wilson Blvd in Rosslyn.

During the pandemic, Erik Neighbour wanted a fun way to get his friends together where they could stay socially distanced.

So, the Clarendon area resident created a scavenger hunt of sorts, using riddles to explore D.C. monuments. He put the riddles and challenges into an online form so they could use their phones to play.

“They liked it so much that I thought maybe there’s something more here,” he said.

He continued to refine and develop the game into its own app, called  Capital Clues, using coding skills that he first learned creating a financial literacy app. About 100 users downloaded it during a six-month beta testing period and it launched for the public to use two weeks ago, he said.

Users play Capital Clues in D.C. (courtesy Erik Neighbour)

The app provides riddles that guide users from one monument to the next. At each location, there are a series of questions that challenge the user to use observational skills to discover things about the monument. If you don’t get the question, there are hints, but it also can be skipped.

The answer page for each series of questions gives additional insights about what they found. The app has two courses, one from the Lincoln Memorial to the Washington Monument, and another that goes around the Tidal Basin, from the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial to the Thomas Jefferson Memorial.

When he first created the game for his friends, Neighbour used a third party service, but when he started to actually develop an app for the game, functionality around scoring and timing were important to him.

“People are motivated by certain things in games,” he said. “Some people really like the adventure of finding things, other people like myself are really competitive and I’m really motivated by score and want to know how I did on a leaderboard. And so with this app, we’re able to cater to multiple gaming personas and doing so in a branded experience, which has a seamless user experience.”

During the beta period, he said he was also focused on making sure the questions were challenging but still fun. He said he spent almost every other weekend watching people he recruited to play the game, which also led to an adjustment in how users were timed.

And while Neighbour said there are other competitors for scavenger hunt apps, including one called Let’s Roam, Capital Clues has questions that make you think outside of the box, sort of like an escape room experience, which inspired him.

The logo for Capital Clues (courtesy of Erik Neighbour)

Over the next year, he said he’ll evaluate how the app performs and how people react to it. If there is enough interest, he would consider expanding it, he said.

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Bar Ivy in Clarendon, which has started serving as part of its soft opening (courtesy photo)

There are plenty of reasons to celebrate this weekend.

The Columbia Pike Blues Festival is back. For many, it’s a three-day weekend for the Juneteenth federal holiday, and Sunday marks Father’s Day.

When making plans, keep in mind there will be road closures for a few events. The Blues Festival and the Zero Prostate Cancer 5k Run/Walk will shut down several roads in the county on Saturday.

That’s in addition to county facility closures for Juneteenth on Sunday and Monday.

Now, here are the most-read Arlington articles of the past week.

  1. Police searching for suspect after serious stabbing in Crystal City area
  2. ACPD investigating possible abduction attempt at gas station
  3. Merlene drops bid for office after buying house in more affordable part of Arlington
  4. Bar Ivy opens in Clarendon, with grand opening planned later this month
  5. Man charged with trying to break into middle school during lockdown
  6. Camaro driver dies after early morning wreck on I-395
  7. JUST IN: Smoke shop employee found not guilty in shooting case
  8. County Board to consider fee for using county’s electric vehicle charging stations
  9. ‘Like a puzzle piece fit’ — Arlingtonian finds her father through ancestry test
  10. Nats pitcher Sean Doolittle to read to children at Arlington Central Library

Feel free to discuss these stories or anything else of local interest in the comments. Enjoy the weekend, Arlington!

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