How one West Hartford business is making ‘high-touch’ services personal in a physically-distant world.
By Michelle Bonner
Imagine for a moment launching a new business that becomes so popular in its first year that not only do you have to find a new, larger, space, but you spend nearly a year custom-building the space to accommodate the overwhelming demand, and as soon as the paint on the wall is dry, those who rely on you for relaxation are now stressed out because your doors are closed indefinitely.
That is exactly what happened to The Medspa West Hartford, when their business was forced to close due to COVID-19 in mid-March.
“If I don’t laugh, I’ll cry,” says The Medspa owner Roni Rodman. “We are certainly not alone, but the irony of it all is not lost on me. People rely on us to help them feel their best, and because of this pandemic, we couldn’t be there for them.”
That is all about to change when The Medspa reopens in their brand-new space in Blue Back Square.
First opened in 2017 in the Delamar Hotel, The Medspa quickly outgrew that location before moving to a temporary space on Isham Rd. while renovating the new site at 65 Raymond Rd., right next door to Muse Paint Bar. Its new doors open Monday, June 30.
“It’s not exactly the grand opening we were imagining, but our clients can expect the same extraordinary service and world-class treatments.”
Those treatments include Botox and the wildly popular and revolutionary CoolSculpting, which is a non-surgical fat-freezing technology, hailed as a “game changer.” According to a 2019 report by the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery, the popularity of CoolSculpting rose 43% from 2017 and has quadrupled since 2012. And further proof of the demand for CoolSculpting, according to ASDS, for every one liposuction surgery, there are more than 10 noninvasive body-sculpting treatments.
“It’s scientifically proven to give effective results without surgery, and the demand for that procedure is why we needed a bigger space.”
It may be a “noninvasive” treatment, but it is an intimate procedure which requires human contact, as does all of the services offered by The Medspa, something that forces everyone to address the sterile white elephant in the room.
“A lot certainly has changed,” says Rodman, “but the one thing that hasn’t, is our commitment to the highest quality of care our clients have come to expect from The Medspa. The safety and health of our patients and staff is our top priority.”
The Medspa is now COVID-19 self-certified through the State of Connecticut, and they are implementing the strict health and safety guidelines set forth by the State and the Centers for Disease Control & Protection (CDC).
“One thing that works in our favor, is we are a doctor’s office, so everything is already sterile.”
The Medspa, which has two registered nurses and a physician’s assistant on staff, operates under the direction of Dr. Glen Brooks, a Board-Certified plastic surgeon and Medical Director of the West Hartford office, who has overseen every detail related to the reopening. “No safety precaution has been left to chance,” says Brooks. “Despite the many protocols in place for both the patients and staff, The Medspa experience will still be the quality you can expect.”
“Upon arrival,” says Rodman, “patients will text us and be greeted at the door by a member of The Medspa team. With masks on, and physical distancing in place, the patient will disinfect at the front before being escorted immediately to their treatment room. All paperwork will be done online, and all payments are touchless.”
All providers, who went through countless hours of PPE and Patient Safety Protocol trainings, will be wearing both N95 masks and surgical masks, which will be worn over the N95 mask. Additional protections include wearing either safety goggles or a face shield.
The Medspa even hired a “safety officer,” who will oversee the disinfection process.
“Not to be too dramatic, but this really is about life and death, and no safety measure is too extreme,” adds Rodman.
While personal service businesses were allowed to reopen on June 17, as part of the state’s Phase II reopening, The Medspa chose to delay their opening to ensure all safeguards are in place, and to give their staff additional time to familiarize themselves with those protections, and to feel comfortable returning to work.
“We are anxious to reopen, but we were not going to announce a date until we were certain that our staff was ready to return. We role-played every safety scenario several times, so that we all felt confident and prepared for any challenges we may be faced with.”
Those challenges are not exclusive to their physical workspace. “Separate from being comfortable and feeling safe in their work environment, we also wanted to be sensitive to the childcare needs of our staff. We are so fortunate to be on the backside of this pandemic, but the reality is, it’s still a crisis, and it’s important to me, as a business owner, that our staff’s needs are a top priority. We’re in the business of helping others look and feel their best. If our staff is not feeling relaxed, how can we expect our patients to feel calm?”
If those patients are like the rest of us, they may have gained the quarantine 15, baking their way through the last three months, and/or have simply spent their time on nonstop Zoom calls, which made it easy for people to analyze and scrutinize their looks.
“The two services that booked up immediately are our CoolSculpting and Botox services,” says Rodman. “In the first 24 hours of notifying our clients when we were reopening, we booked those two services through late July.”
In addition to the demand for those treatments, The Medspa received numerous requests to offer “traditional’ spa services like facials and waxing. “Facial services are currently on hold, but when the State of Connecticut gives us the green light, we just hired a wonderful lead esthetician, Saint Baez, who will offer her signature facials, waxing, lash and brow services. Saint also has some add-on services unique to The Medspa, including “Ice Global,” which gives patients a fresh and dewy look without makeup, and “Crystal Pyramid,” which promotes physical, emotional and spiritual healing.”
It may be some time before patients can enjoy champagne and catered meals by Vinted Wine Bar while relaxing in their new spacious waiting room, but The Medspa is ready to give its patients a safe space to come and escape the stress and anxiety that has been a part of their daily lives for the last 3 ½ months. “I think the hardest part will be not being able to hug our loyal clients when they walk through that door. But the smile in our eyes behind the mask will hopefully be the first step to a return on investing in themselves.”
For more information on the services offered by The Medspa West Hartford, www.themedspamd.com. To book one of the services currently offered at The Medspa, call 860-206-8191 or email [email protected].
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