They’re throwing in the blanket at The Snuggle House.
The Downtown business, 123 E. Main St., open for just three weeks, announced on its Facebook page Friday night that it has closed.
“The Snuggle House is Officially Closed — for good. For those people who supported us, thank you. Snuggle on!” the post read.
No specific reason was given, but The Snuggle House, whose November opening was delayed for one month because of city concerns, posted this reply to Facebook questions: “The push back and harassment is not worth it, honestly.”
Neither employees of the business nor owner Matthew Hurtado could be reached for comment on Saturday. Phone calls and email messages were not returned.
The closing announcement drew scores of comments on The Snuggle House’s Facebook page, most of them sympathetic. Some said they were sad to see the business close so soon; a few said they had been hoping to try the service.
The Snuggle House offered “therapeutic cuddling” for $60 an hour. The business, which had attracted nationwide attention, opened Nov. 15 after weeks of delays because of a lack of a business plan and inspections by city officials who were concerned the second-floor business could be a front for prostitution.
Ald. Mike Verveer, 4th District, who represents the area, said he received quite a few questions from Downtown residents and businesspeople before The Snuggle House opened. They were worried that the clientele might be detrimental to nearby restaurants and bars, Verveer said.
He said he, too, was “a healthy skeptic of their business model. But I was keeping an open mind.”
Since The Snuggle House opened, Verveer said he has “not received any complaints whatsoever.” He also said he does not know of any new demands by the city, once the business fulfilled all of the initial requirements.
Verveer said he was surprised to hear that The Snuggle House closed so soon and so abruptly. “My guess would probably be that they just didn’t have the business that they anticipated,” he said.
The Facebook page for the business offers The Snuggle House’s furniture to local church organizations “for people who are in need,” and promises refunds for unused gift certificates.