My original review for Mike’s Hardware back in 2011 was in my “novice Yelp period” as a newbie, therefore I feel it’s necessary to update my review and give them a more appropriate review.
Mike’s Hardware opened for business back in 1981 and was founded by Mike LaFleur. Mike and his family actually lived upstairs from the store for nearly 10 years, so it was only natural that his sons Rob (aka The Colonel) and Lee took an interest in the hardware business. In fact, when most kids were playing on playgrounds, Rob and Lee could be found inside the store playing; but all the while gaining valuable insight on the hardware business. I guess you can say that hardware is truly in their blood.
Fast forward 33 years and you’ll see that Mike’s Hardware continues to flourish and are holding their own in a city with multiple locations of national chain hardware stores. The key to their success is multi-faceted. But most important is the personalized service you receive as soon as you walk in the door, as everyone is enthusiastically greeted and treated as if they are a valued customer; even if it’s their first visit to the store.
Mike’s specializes in hard to find hardware items. Their motto is “If we don’t have it, you don’t need it”. And it’s rare that they don’t have an item you are looking for. But on a serious note, if there is something they don’t have, they will definitely point you in the right direction to assist you in acquiring it. They are all about their customers. After Hurricane Katrina exacted her assault on New Orleans, Mike’s Hardware reopened in just 6 weeks, and they were the first hardware store to reopen, even though the staff all had damaged homes as well. In fact, they were the very first business to reopen in Gentilly.
Mr. Mike officially “semi” retired in 2012, so sons Rob and Lee are now running the day to day operations. But Mr. Mike still stops by frequently to “hold court” over operations; somewhat like a Chairman of the Board. The LaFleur’s have a staff of 5 full time professionals working with them and they are all neatly attired in a Mike’s Hardware uniform shirt.
Mike’s is one of only a handful of Devoe paint dealers in the city and they offer a full line of paint and sundries. I can personally vouch for this paint as I have used it after having purchased it here. The top of the line eggshell enamel provides excellent coverage and good “scrub ability”. Mike’s hardware can match most any color by eye or via computerization using their Datacolor data flash DF-100.
Mike’s is also your go to place for plumbing supplies. They carry a full line of pipe, fittings, valves, and accessories for PEX, PVC, ABS, copper, galvanized, black iron, brass, vent, and more.
Other specialty services include screen repairs and custom screen manufacturing. They are also a large glass dealer and carry Florentine glass; and can even cut specialty patterns. Furthermore, they also repair gas space heaters, which is a good service to have in New Orleans.
Mike’s Hardware has been, is now and forever will be my local hardware store of choice. They have served me and my family well for a long time now and it’s worth the extra five minutes of driving to patronize their store, as even though there are closer places, there are none better.← Mike C.