Unique Deaf Businesses Around the Globe

Oct 1, 2015 | Articles and Publications

This month we wanted to take the time to highlight a few of the many deaf-owned businesses from across the globe that have caught our eye. From small towns in Texas, to fashionistas in Brooklyn, all the way to grand hotels in Rome – these businesses are an inspiration to deaf entrepreneurs everywhere.

Crazy for Crepes

Just up the road from our San Antonio headquarters in a little Texas town called Dripping Springs there is a family-run crepe restaurant. The restaurant owners hail from Ukraine and Russia, and brought over Crepe Crazy’s recipes when they moved to the United States years ago. The restaurant prides itself on using fresh ingredients to create their delectable crepes. Whether you are in the mood for something sweet like the dulce de leche turtle or savory like the prosciutto & apricot jam, Crepe Crazy’s menu is sure to have something for every appetite.

The restaurant now has approximately 20 deaf employees and opened its second location at 3103 A. Lamar Blvd in South Austin last month. Visit www.crepecrazy.com for more information and to check out their menu.

A Passion for Fashion

Deaf fashion designer Mara Ladines-Reyes started her company, By Mara, in 2008 with only two products, and has since grown the business into a well-known brand with a purpose. Mara recently opened her first brick-and-mortar store location in Brooklyn. Her line has been spotted being worn by the cast of the popular television show, “Switched at Birth”.

Mara uses her brand to celebrate Deaf Culture and history while working to increase the public’s awareness about Deaf Culture. The By Mara logo is a subtle twist on the hand sign for “I love you” and was created as part of a class assignment. Now, the well-known logo can be found on all mozz72 of the clothing lines products. To shop By Mara visit: www.bymara.com/.

All Aboard the Pizza Trolley

When visiting San Francisco make sure to stop by Mozzeria for a slice of one-of-a-kind pizza. One of the owners, Melody Stein, studied and perfected the art of pizza-making in Rome, Sorrento and Positano, Italy. Along with her husband and co-owner Russell, Melody made the decision a few years ago to have the San Francisco restaurant be fully staffed by deaf employees.

In traditional San Francisco style, the company built the Mozzeria trolley, a 25-foot mobile pizzeria trolley that resembles an iconic San Francisco cable car. The Steins even installed a built-in wood-burning stove, making it possible to take their pizza on the road. The new addition allows the company to provide on-site catering, attend festivals and food truck events. Visit www.mozzeria.com/ for more information or to make a reservation.

When in Rome

hotelAt the top of the historic Spanish steps you’ll find the Hotel Hassler, a stunning five star hotel that is frequented by big name celebrities like Tom Cruise and Jennifer Lopez. President and managing director, Roberto Wirth, was born profoundly deaf and is the fifth generation of a famous family of Swiss hoteliers.

Prior to taking over the family business, Roberto completed most of his higher education in the U.S. and attended Gallaudet University, RIT and Cornell. After finishing a work-study program at Cornell, Roberto moved to Honolulu and worked as president of Silent Aloha Magazine for the Deaf.

Visit www.hotelhasslerroma.com/ to take a look at the hotel’s dreamy suites and stunning views.

Have a favorite deaf-owned business in your area or that you have discovered on a recent vacation? Comment below with the company name and location, and we’ll add it to our list!

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