At only 450 square-feet, The Healing Center San Diego packs a big punch when it comes to patients, profits, and professionalism.
Dispensary ratings don’t get much better than the one WeedMaps gave The Healing Center San Diego: 4.9 stars. Reviewers rave about the eight-month-old business. “Just have to say these guys are the best.”…The gold standard for other dispensaries to follow.” “…Best staff, best meds.” “…The most potent flower in San Diego.”
Earning such glowing praise hasn’t been easy. The city insisted THCSD jump through lots of hoops.
“I think the process was fair but very difficult,” said THCSD President Ray Taylor. “A lot of people started the process; only fourteen got the zoning CUP, and only eight have opened. The law allows for four dispensaries per the city’s nine districts. That’s a total of thirty-six citywide. It isn’t an easy task to open.”
However, the city also has provided help: San Diego is working to shut down illegal shops that have been hurting sales at the legal dispensaries. It cost Taylor nearly $1 million to get the CUP, build out the location, and stock the shelves. Plus, it took two years to get the doors open; he had to pay rent the whole time.
“It’s not a business for everyone,” he said. “There are huge barriers to entry, but once you open there is a large demand for good quality, safe cannabis products. In four months, we have gone from zero sales to over $10,000, and sales are growing exponentially. We hope to be at $20,000 a day by the end of the year.”
“I have friends and family who suffer from afflictions that cannabis really helps,” noted Taylor. “I told my family if I could ever open a medical cannabis dispensary legally, I would do it. I wanted my family and friends to have a safe place to get their medicine. In February 2014, the city of San Diego put forth a legal way to operate a dispensary. My brother-in-law called and said he wanted to join me.”
“We wanted to build the best dispensary we could—like an Apple store for cannabis. The last thing we wanted was something like all the illegal dispensaries. We wanted to be proud of what we built and we are,” said Taylor.
Megan Stone of High Road Design Studio. With the goal of becoming “The Rolls Royce of dispensaries,” Stone developed a color palette of deep purples found in Taylor’s favorite cannabis strain. “The rich royal purple was paired with grays and whites for an elegant, modern look,” Stone said. “Their logo pays homage to the THC molecule with its angular lines and hexagonal shaping while remaining sleek and simple.”
“Our budtenders are the best around,” Taylor noted. “We picked the best ‘cannabis care consultants’ we could find at [illegal] shops and brought them to the right side of the law. We were able to have the best in town join the THCSD team. Our basic requirements include they must be 18 years old, be a medical cannabis patient, and have extensive knowledge of cannabis and its related products. But top of the list is that they are professional, courteous, and care about patients. It’s the best job in the world helping people feel better.”
“Flower is still the biggest seller, followed by concentrates and edibles,” said Taylor. “Branding is becoming a big thing right now; famous people are using their names to brand items. Chong’s Choice Cannabis is popular, and Whoopi Goldberg now has a cannabis tampon that reduces cramps. Of course, Snoop Dogg has his line of products, too.”
“I love the hugs and thank you’s from happy patients,” said Taylor. “Nothing is better than having a part in making someone’s life better—and even saving some lives. It’s just an amazing business to me. A hug and a big ‘thank you’ makes all the investment and time worthwhile. I smile all the time. Of course, that could be the cannabis, too.”
“Our main goal is to provide patients with top-quality, organic, tested medical marijuana, backed by the newest technologies to bring the future of medical marijuana right to your front door with friendly and safe service. With THCSD, you can be guaranteed a selection of high-quality flowers, concentrates, and edibles,” said Taylor.
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