My­chel ‘Snoop’ Dil­lard lives up to her rep­u­ta­tion as a se­rial en­tre­pre­neur

GA Voice - - Out In The Wind -

“I never really had a lot of fear. I was al­ways a risk-taker. One of things I tell peo­ple is that if you don’t take that risk you’ll never have the op­por­tu­nity to see if you can do it.”

—My­chel “Snoop” Dil­lard

By DAR­IAN AARON daaron@the­gavoice.com

It’s hard to imag­ine that My­chel “Snoop” Dil­lard is ca­pa­ble of get­ting the rec­om­mended eight hours of nightly sleep with her sched­ule. The busy At­lanta les­bian en­tre­pre­neur is the brain be­hind two suc­cess­ful busi­nesses: The Hookah Hide­away, a pop­u­lar down­town hookah bar, and Party Bus Kings. And as if those weren’t enough to keep her busy, Dil­lard is weeks away from open­ing Posh Ul­tra Lounge, a new up­scale lounge in Macon, and Girl Talk, a dat­ing app de­signed specif­i­cally for women who love women.

Ge­or­gia Voice man­aged to catch up with the Van­der­bilt Univer­sity alumna in be­tween making fi­nal prepa­ra­tions for the grand open­ing of Posh Ul­tra Lounge and on­go­ing talks for Es­co­bar, a joint night­club ven­ture with At­lanta rap­per 2 Chainz that is sure to make waves in 2016.

Ge­or­gia Voice: How did the col­lab­o­ra­tion with 2 Chainz come about?

My­chel “Snoop” Dil­lard:

I was look­ing to ex­pand and I al­ways wanted to be on Peters Street. The cur­rent venue I have is called the Hookah Hide­away (at 43 Jesse Hill Jr. Drive NE). It’s a very in­ti­mate spot. I wanted to ex­pand be­cause we’ve really out­grown it due to its pop­u­lar­ity. My real­tor ini­tially in­tro­duced us and then 2 Chainz and I got to­gether to see if we would be a good fit and we found that we were and formed a re­la­tion­ship. The rest is history.

Have you faced any re­sis­tance as a les­bian woman in a heav­ily male-dom­i­nated in­dus­try?

Sur­pris­ingly, I haven’t faced any re­sis­tance at all. I get a lot of re­spect in our com­mu­nity and the straight com­mu­nity as well. I think peo­ple just look at me as a busi­ness­woman who hap­pens to be gay. I think be­ing in a city like At­lanta definitely helps.

Where did the idea for the party bus come from?

When I was try­ing dif­fer­ent hus­tles to fig­ure out what I was go­ing to do next, one of the ideas was to pro­mote par­ties for party buses. I was go­ing to rent the party bus from some­one else who had one and the woman I was see­ing at the time sug­gested I take it a step fur­ther and get my own bus. Party Bus Kings has been in busi­ness since 2012.

What type of cus­tomer usu­ally rents a party bus?

Any and ev­ery­body. We do tail­gates, we do kids birth­days, sweet 16s, re­tire­ment par­ties. We’ve had ba­bies on the bus who were just picked up from the hos­pi­tal. It’s a wide va­ri­ety. Peo­ple use them a lot for hol­i­days. Even if you have friends com­ing into town and you don’t want to drive.

Tell us about your new app Girl Talk.

I have a lot of friends that are gay males who use Grindr and I thought it was so messed up that I didn’t have an app to get on to find me some­body (laugh­ing). Even though I’m in the nightlife in­dus­try, I don’t really enjoy go­ing to clubs and par­ties. I al­ways thought it would be cool to come up with an app for women to con­nect with women all over the world. It will em­body In­sta­gram, Snapchat, (678) 561-7813 www.par­ty­busk­ings.com and Face­book all in one. There will be a sec­tion to chat, send mes­sages, and cre­ate pro­files. You’ll be able to up­load videos and cre­ate fo­rums. It’ll also have a GPS fea­ture. I think it’s go­ing to be phe­nom­e­nal! It’ll start out as a free app when it launches in late Novem­ber and will most likely be $1.99 to down­load by the end of Jan­uary.

There’s a quote on your web­site that says, “Over­com­ing ob­sta­cles is the best tool for suc­cess.” There are a lot of peo­ple who’d like to start a busi­ness but they’re gripped by fear. How did you over­come your fears?

I never really had a lot of fear. I was al­ways a risk-taker. One of the things I tell peo­ple is that if you don’t take that risk you’ll never have the op­por­tu­nity to see if you can do it. And a part of suc­cess is fail­ure. We learn a lot from our fail­ures. When you do over­come those fail­ures it makes you a much bet­ter leader and busi­nessper­son be­cause you re­al­ize that you can get through dif­fi­cult things.

Novem­ber 13, 2015

My­chel ‘Snoop’ Dil­lard is launch­ing a new lounge and dat­ing app in ad­di­tion to op­er­at­ing two suc­cess­ful At­lanta busi­nesses. (Photo by Ash­ley Woods)

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