Well-known local family, the Hatashitas, keep building the business with startup space

News Nov 14, 2017 by Bob Vrbanac Waterloo Chronicle

The walls did talk to Roman Hatashita when he purchased the former 1 King St. N., property from his dad John and decided to turn the former diamond centre into a modern flex workspace.

The building was built by the Bank of Toronto in 1924, and the almost 100-year old building is considered historically significant by the City of Waterloo for its Art Deco exterior design. It stands out as a white marbled beacon on the southwest corner of King and Erb streets.

But it was the potential inside that most intrigued Hatashita working with his son Michi.

It had these huge picture windows that gave people inside looking out some of the best views in the uptown core. The hardwood floors were original and in great shape and would tie in the brick and beam elements of the spaces he found behind the plaster walls of the former Hatashita Diamond Centre.

“It had good bones, and that’s what we’re working with,” said Hatashita. “We still had a quarter-million dollars of showcases and I couldn’t give them away, I had to donate them all and rip them all out.”

The three former bank vaults, you can find on each floor of the three-storey building, also inspired the imagination, and Hatashita thought of them as transformative spaces where a lot of creativity could kick in.

“We changed all the vaults to these private meeting rooms,” he said. “It gives people a chance to get some of their creative work done.”

The work started in June and six months later the project officially named One King Street has had its soft opening a few weeks ago and it’s starting to demonstrate the modern potential of a co-working space.

“I run a martial arts distribution company and a lot of people ask me why I’m doing this,” said Hatashita, who is a former Olympian who competed at the 1992 Olympic Games for Canada’s National Men’s Judo team. “It’s cool that it’s uptown Waterloo, and my dad built businesses in the core since the 1960s.

“But in 2017, since everybody can be on their laptop working, this is a place for entrepreneurs and small businesses. This is a startup, startup place where people can get their start or they already have revenue coming in.”

There’s an espresso bar on the first floor and it’s producing some of the best coffee you can find in the core. If you get one of the memberships that come with the co-working space on the first level, Hatashita said that coffee comes free, but there is a chance for others to come in and grab a cup.

Not satisfied with any old coffee, he brought in beans from Phil and Sebastian, and the expertise to make a constant rotation of single origin drip coffees and a honed espresso. “There’s enough coffee shops in town, so we wanted to raise the bar a little bit,” said Hatashita.

The first floor is the place where satellite business can get their feet on the ground, or new founders can bump into other founders to share ideas.

As you move up the floors at One King North there are offices and picturesque meetings rooms for rent by the hour or by the time you need them to do the work and give a fledgling business a professional address or the proper setting for a pitch.

As those companies mature there is more permanent office space on the third floor and Hatashita already has a number of clients who have let out all the space to help build their companies that are ready to launch and make a bigger impact in the marketplace.

“For me my other company is a mature company and it’s doing fine,” said Hatashita. “But I wanted to do something different and be part of the tech community.

“This space helps build that community.”

 That community concept also applies to the wider community for those looking to hold meetings in One King North’s board room overlooking King Street, to the flex space that allows them to hold events and other attractions on the first floor with a huge pull-down screen and a digital projector from Christie Digital to go with it.

It all has the feel of something you might find in Silicon Valley — so why not Silicon Valley North said Hatashita. “It’s going to be great for the community and it’s going to be great for people doing those different things,” he said.

You never know what inspirations those collisions will provide. Or maybe you might meet that coder that can help you refine your idea.

Hatashita has been in the cave himself with his other business, that didn’t allow for a lot of interaction other then people he supplied with judo equipment. He admits he’s being a little selfish because he wants to be re-engaged with the energy and enthusiasm that is coming from the local startup community.

“This is pushing my buttons too,” said Hatashita. “You get kind of dumb and stale working out of your own house, and you get socially isolated.

“This makes perfect sense to me because you can come here and work among other people, and people need to feed off the energy of other people.

“There are places to collide, and this can be an important networking space.”

One King North will be holding a grand opening in December, and memberships for the space are available now. For more information visit onekingnorth.ca.


Well-known local family, the Hatashitas, keep building the business with startup space

Reimaging One King North

News Nov 14, 2017 by Bob Vrbanac Waterloo Chronicle

The walls did talk to Roman Hatashita when he purchased the former 1 King St. N., property from his dad John and decided to turn the former diamond centre into a modern flex workspace.

The building was built by the Bank of Toronto in 1924, and the almost 100-year old building is considered historically significant by the City of Waterloo for its Art Deco exterior design. It stands out as a white marbled beacon on the southwest corner of King and Erb streets.

But it was the potential inside that most intrigued Hatashita working with his son Michi.

It had these huge picture windows that gave people inside looking out some of the best views in the uptown core. The hardwood floors were original and in great shape and would tie in the brick and beam elements of the spaces he found behind the plaster walls of the former Hatashita Diamond Centre.

“It had good bones, and that’s what we’re working with,” said Hatashita. “We still had a quarter-million dollars of showcases and I couldn’t give them away, I had to donate them all and rip them all out.”

The three former bank vaults, you can find on each floor of the three-storey building, also inspired the imagination, and Hatashita thought of them as transformative spaces where a lot of creativity could kick in.

“We changed all the vaults to these private meeting rooms,” he said. “It gives people a chance to get some of their creative work done.”

The work started in June and six months later the project officially named One King Street has had its soft opening a few weeks ago and it’s starting to demonstrate the modern potential of a co-working space.

“I run a martial arts distribution company and a lot of people ask me why I’m doing this,” said Hatashita, who is a former Olympian who competed at the 1992 Olympic Games for Canada’s National Men’s Judo team. “It’s cool that it’s uptown Waterloo, and my dad built businesses in the core since the 1960s.

“But in 2017, since everybody can be on their laptop working, this is a place for entrepreneurs and small businesses. This is a startup, startup place where people can get their start or they already have revenue coming in.”

There’s an espresso bar on the first floor and it’s producing some of the best coffee you can find in the core. If you get one of the memberships that come with the co-working space on the first level, Hatashita said that coffee comes free, but there is a chance for others to come in and grab a cup.

Not satisfied with any old coffee, he brought in beans from Phil and Sebastian, and the expertise to make a constant rotation of single origin drip coffees and a honed espresso. “There’s enough coffee shops in town, so we wanted to raise the bar a little bit,” said Hatashita.

The first floor is the place where satellite business can get their feet on the ground, or new founders can bump into other founders to share ideas.

As you move up the floors at One King North there are offices and picturesque meetings rooms for rent by the hour or by the time you need them to do the work and give a fledgling business a professional address or the proper setting for a pitch.

As those companies mature there is more permanent office space on the third floor and Hatashita already has a number of clients who have let out all the space to help build their companies that are ready to launch and make a bigger impact in the marketplace.

“For me my other company is a mature company and it’s doing fine,” said Hatashita. “But I wanted to do something different and be part of the tech community.

“This space helps build that community.”

 That community concept also applies to the wider community for those looking to hold meetings in One King North’s board room overlooking King Street, to the flex space that allows them to hold events and other attractions on the first floor with a huge pull-down screen and a digital projector from Christie Digital to go with it.

It all has the feel of something you might find in Silicon Valley — so why not Silicon Valley North said Hatashita. “It’s going to be great for the community and it’s going to be great for people doing those different things,” he said.

You never know what inspirations those collisions will provide. Or maybe you might meet that coder that can help you refine your idea.

Hatashita has been in the cave himself with his other business, that didn’t allow for a lot of interaction other then people he supplied with judo equipment. He admits he’s being a little selfish because he wants to be re-engaged with the energy and enthusiasm that is coming from the local startup community.

“This is pushing my buttons too,” said Hatashita. “You get kind of dumb and stale working out of your own house, and you get socially isolated.

“This makes perfect sense to me because you can come here and work among other people, and people need to feed off the energy of other people.

“There are places to collide, and this can be an important networking space.”

One King North will be holding a grand opening in December, and memberships for the space are available now. For more information visit onekingnorth.ca.


Well-known local family, the Hatashitas, keep building the business with startup space

Reimaging One King North

News Nov 14, 2017 by Bob Vrbanac Waterloo Chronicle

The walls did talk to Roman Hatashita when he purchased the former 1 King St. N., property from his dad John and decided to turn the former diamond centre into a modern flex workspace.

The building was built by the Bank of Toronto in 1924, and the almost 100-year old building is considered historically significant by the City of Waterloo for its Art Deco exterior design. It stands out as a white marbled beacon on the southwest corner of King and Erb streets.

But it was the potential inside that most intrigued Hatashita working with his son Michi.

It had these huge picture windows that gave people inside looking out some of the best views in the uptown core. The hardwood floors were original and in great shape and would tie in the brick and beam elements of the spaces he found behind the plaster walls of the former Hatashita Diamond Centre.

“It had good bones, and that’s what we’re working with,” said Hatashita. “We still had a quarter-million dollars of showcases and I couldn’t give them away, I had to donate them all and rip them all out.”

The three former bank vaults, you can find on each floor of the three-storey building, also inspired the imagination, and Hatashita thought of them as transformative spaces where a lot of creativity could kick in.

“We changed all the vaults to these private meeting rooms,” he said. “It gives people a chance to get some of their creative work done.”

The work started in June and six months later the project officially named One King Street has had its soft opening a few weeks ago and it’s starting to demonstrate the modern potential of a co-working space.

“I run a martial arts distribution company and a lot of people ask me why I’m doing this,” said Hatashita, who is a former Olympian who competed at the 1992 Olympic Games for Canada’s National Men’s Judo team. “It’s cool that it’s uptown Waterloo, and my dad built businesses in the core since the 1960s.

“But in 2017, since everybody can be on their laptop working, this is a place for entrepreneurs and small businesses. This is a startup, startup place where people can get their start or they already have revenue coming in.”

There’s an espresso bar on the first floor and it’s producing some of the best coffee you can find in the core. If you get one of the memberships that come with the co-working space on the first level, Hatashita said that coffee comes free, but there is a chance for others to come in and grab a cup.

Not satisfied with any old coffee, he brought in beans from Phil and Sebastian, and the expertise to make a constant rotation of single origin drip coffees and a honed espresso. “There’s enough coffee shops in town, so we wanted to raise the bar a little bit,” said Hatashita.

The first floor is the place where satellite business can get their feet on the ground, or new founders can bump into other founders to share ideas.

As you move up the floors at One King North there are offices and picturesque meetings rooms for rent by the hour or by the time you need them to do the work and give a fledgling business a professional address or the proper setting for a pitch.

As those companies mature there is more permanent office space on the third floor and Hatashita already has a number of clients who have let out all the space to help build their companies that are ready to launch and make a bigger impact in the marketplace.

“For me my other company is a mature company and it’s doing fine,” said Hatashita. “But I wanted to do something different and be part of the tech community.

“This space helps build that community.”

 That community concept also applies to the wider community for those looking to hold meetings in One King North’s board room overlooking King Street, to the flex space that allows them to hold events and other attractions on the first floor with a huge pull-down screen and a digital projector from Christie Digital to go with it.

It all has the feel of something you might find in Silicon Valley — so why not Silicon Valley North said Hatashita. “It’s going to be great for the community and it’s going to be great for people doing those different things,” he said.

You never know what inspirations those collisions will provide. Or maybe you might meet that coder that can help you refine your idea.

Hatashita has been in the cave himself with his other business, that didn’t allow for a lot of interaction other then people he supplied with judo equipment. He admits he’s being a little selfish because he wants to be re-engaged with the energy and enthusiasm that is coming from the local startup community.

“This is pushing my buttons too,” said Hatashita. “You get kind of dumb and stale working out of your own house, and you get socially isolated.

“This makes perfect sense to me because you can come here and work among other people, and people need to feed off the energy of other people.

“There are places to collide, and this can be an important networking space.”

One King North will be holding a grand opening in December, and memberships for the space are available now. For more information visit onekingnorth.ca.