Kamloops sex doll rental business already blowing up days before launch

House of Dolls has received national attention

Just a couple of days after news broke Kamloops was getting a sex doll rental business — one of the first in Canada — Kristen Dickson says things have gone nuts.

"It's gone absolutely insane," says Dickson, who runs House of Dolls with her husband. "I didn't expect all this publicity."

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Dickson and the seven life-size silicon dolls she'll be renting out for overnight visits have received national attention over the past 48 hours. She's gotten inquiries from media and individuals, with more than seven times the traffic on the company's website.

"I just wrapped up a television interview," she says. "Our website has crashed two times."

That's particularly notable, she explains, because they haven't officially launched the site, and it's not been set up to be searchable. House of Dolls goes live, relatively speaking, Dec. 1; though, with all the attention, Dickson says she might be willing to start a little earlier.

Part of what's surprised her about the attention has been the positivity of it.

"There's a huge group of people defending me and telling me it's great, that it takes a bold person to do this," she tells Kamloops Matters. "I'm getting emails saying, 'Way to go, congratulations.'"

Photo House of Dolls
Photo House of Dolls

While one person decided to go on Facebook and tell Dickson she should have her two children taken away, people leapt to her defence. Others have been inquiring about franchise and investment opportunities.

"So many people that wanted to do it themselves," she says. "There's one in Vancouver and one in Toronto, so there's everything in between."

She and her husband have already discussed potential expansion, with no competition in Vernon, Kelowna or Calgary.

"Fort McMurray would be a great place to expand."

While all the media attention going on is a bit of a distraction (she spent hours responding to emails this morning), she's still setting up the mom-and-pop sex doll brothel, a job she doesn't have much of a history in.

"Before we started this, I was a stay-at-home mom," Dickson says. "Before that, I worked at Walmart for 17 years."

The general notion was set in her mind years ago, when she was talking to a woman she worked with. The discussion turned to how sex work is administered in England, where the woman was from. Dickson says the idea intrigued her then.

Nowadays, the sex doll business seemed viable, so she and her husband moved on the opportunity. The dolls cost the pair between $1,700 and $3,500 each. They'll be renting them out for $350 a night with a $500 damage deposit.

The night of the rental they'll bring them to the chosen location, set them up and leave them for their sleepover. The next morning they'll pick them up. The dolls will then be cleaned with anti-bacterial soap.

"They'll be scrubbed down head to toe," Dickson says. "We have special irrigators to get in every crack and crevice to get everything out."

Specialized cameras will also be used, to check in hard-to-see places, and a black light will be used to check for any leftover organic residue.

Dickson adds they've gone through all the regulatory hoops, including discussing the business with Interior Health.

"We made sure we went to see them first," she says. "If they do come up with regulations, I would be totally happy to have them involved."

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