Marie Olesen and Austin Schroeder reflect on the journey from an empty space to the grand opening of the new La Jolla Cosmetic Medical Spa in Carlsbad.
Hear what you can expect when you walk through the doors of the new Carlsbad location for the first time, both visually and culturally.
- Book your appointment online at our Carlsbad medical spa
- Follow the artist who beautified our Carlsbad space, Stefanie Bales
Monique Ramsey (00:07):
You are listening to The La Jolla Cosmetic Podcast. So I have two very special people with me right now here at La Jolla Cosmetic in Carlsbad at the Beacon. So I’m here with Austin and Marie. So we have our founder, we have, and president I think, and our CEO. And so welcome.
Thank you. Thank you, . We’re excited.
Monique Ramsey (00:37):
Yeah. Okay. So tell me your first impressions of the space.
Well, it’s hard to have first impressions when we’ve been looking at these plans for literally nine months now. But to see it come to life, I think it’s just, you know, validating of everything that we wanted to see in it. It’s open, it’s warm, it has bright energy, and we wanted a space that felt approachable, but also fun. You don’t wanna be in a, you know, dark place when you’re getting these fun procedures. Do you wanna give yourself energy? So I’m just, I’m so happy. That’s my impression. I’m full of happiness and it just, I think it looks awesome. Marie, what do you think?
I think it looks awesome and people come by and they peek in and then they walk in and everyone who’s coming from the other offices are so excited to see the new space and they have had no idea really of what it was gonna be like. And, um, we have our poster collection and it really shows incredibly well in this very contemporary space and just makes it happy and upbeat.
Monique Ramsey (01:43):
Yeah. So, okay, Austin, so what were your goals for this space?
Our goals was to try to capture, I think, what makes La Jolla Cosmetic special at our, our prior locations. Cuz they’d also have warmth and fun and family, but try to bring it to someplace new, right? This is the first time we’ve had the opportunity to do something from scratch. So it was like, how do we bring something fresh, make it feel like it’s, you know, very in the times, but also have that same special sauce that we’ve had for so many years. And so that was really the goal and I think, I hope people walk in and they’re feeling, again, warmth, like energy, happiness, like those are all the types of things we wanted to bring to the space. And I think we did that.
Yes, incredibly happy. And I was talking to one of the gals that works at the front desk and she said, everyone comes in and they just start smiling and the the, just because it’s bright and happy and to Austin’s point, when you’re doing med spa procedures, you’re trying to do something fun for yourself that you’re gonna enjoy. And so you wanna have fun energy while you’re doing it.
Monique Ramsey (02:59):
Yeah. And I think there’s one part that I think patients are gonna love. There’s a room in this facility that is for prepping. And tell us a little bit about the vision for that room.
Yeah, so I think a lot of what we did was based off our staff’s experience and my experience and how we would wanna be treated when we come into a space. And for a lot of these procedures, you need to be numbing, right? And so we wanted to create a space that was so comfortable that takes time for some, you’re sitting there 30 minutes and so you don’t wanna be locked away in a room. Like, why don’t we have this beautiful room with natural light, with wonderful private chairs where you can have content, charge your phone, do whatever you need to do, and then when it’s ready to go in, you can then go into the treatment room. So I’m really happy with how that, that one turned out.
Monique Ramsey (03:49):
Yeah, it looks really like the perfect, the, these chairs that they have in there are so neat. They’re like little cocoons, so it’s like a little woven basket and it kind of comes around you and envelopes you and I think there’s a TV in there and you can just kind of, like you say, hang out and, and feel like you’re not locked away by yourself in a room. And it’s, it’s nice because then, you know, and if you needed a few minutes afterwards, you could sit down and you can kind of chill and, um, get your bearings before you go on your way. And give us any other along the way things that you thought about, like, wow, this is something we can do here that we haven’t been able to do somewhere else.
Yeah, I think in terms of just other things that we change, part of it was just the room size. I think you wanna make sure when you’re getting in and going for these treatments, you don’t wanna feel like you’re in a box. So we were very intentional making sure this space felt comfortable and big enough and somewhere you could really relax. So room size was something we’ve thought about a lot as well as just flow. So a lot of those small things. I think the one thing that we did new that I personally love, which added a ton to the aesthetic, was what we wanted to do in the lobby with the mural. We had seen so many mockups of, okay, what could this space look like if we had tile back there? Or if we did the abstract art everyone’s doing these these days, or even if we just did a cool wallpaper and each one of those things, it’s incredible how much that back wall when you walk in would change the space. And we ended up really thinking, okay, how do we bring this pop of color, again, the La Jolla cosmetic brand into the space and then not in your face way, but where it’s light and fun. And so the mural is my, I think my favorite part of, of the new space. And I hope for everyone who walks in and, and sees it that they get the same feeling that I get.
I agree completely because the mural is sea elements and our, uh, logo is a starfish, and so we’re anchored to the sea, but it’s fun and you can’t walk in into a space with that mural there and take yourself seriously. Go . These people do not take themselves seriously or they, that they would not have that mural. And so it really, I think it makes a huge statement about you’re going to be happy here.
Monique Ramsey (06:12):
Yeah. Yeah. That it’s not feeling overly judgmental or overly business-like, or overly medical.
Monique Ramsey (06:20):
It’s very easy to have a space like this where you come and it doesn’t have personality. And that was one thing when we were doing the designs where you wanna keep it very light and clean and classy, but then you can air on the side of, okay, I could be anywhere right now, or it just doesn’t feel, I’m not getting a, a strong feeling one way or another. And I do think the mural was the one thing that we did that changed the tone. Yes. And I think to your point, Marie, I I think it brings happiness, which was the goal.
Monique Ramsey (06:48):
Yeah. Yeah. How did you find the artist?
Oh my goodness. Yeah, we went on a goose goose hunt for that one. No, she was incredible. So she lives in San Diego, she is an incredible artist, so she does things beyond just murals. And we had gone on kind of scoured Instagram. There are a lot of very, um, popular people in LA but we’re like, I would love to keep it to a San Diego local if we could. And we met her and she got the vision and she was really someone who was willing to work with us on what we wanted to see. So it was an iterative process. And Stefanie Bales, that’s her name, you should follow her. She did just an incredible job.
Monique Ramsey (07:27):
Yeah. Stefanie Bales Fine Art, I think. And yeah, it was neat because we have on our Instagram, um, the kind of the process and all these little pictures of her doing different elements around the room and it looks, it looks so good.
Yeah. And she’s gonna come to the grand opening event, so
Monique Ramsey (07:44):
Anyone could meet her and chat with her then . Yeah, she’s, she’s really excited to see the whole space come to life. So it’s good to work with someone who wants to see the whole success, you know.
Monique Ramsey (07:55):
So is there anything, can you give us like previews of, now that this is open, what’s the next thing on the horizon?
Well, first and foremost, we just wanna make sure all our patients are super happy in the new location. So making sure that we’ve done everything to provide that experience here is still the number one priority. You know, we’ve been in business for a long time, Marie, you could talk about exact all the things we’ve learned in 34 years, but we haven’t had the challenge of trying to bring what we do to a new space and having the highest standards of patient care is the entire brand. So making sure we have the same systems, protocol, culture, all the stuff we’ve been training on, but really making sure we’re bringing it to the level we wanna bring it is, is really the focus. But then after that we, we have grand plans, , I think there’s more places in San Diego that could use, you know, this happiness, this, this environment that we create. And so there’s a couple other spots that we’re eyeing and, and probably in about a year’s time there’ll be another exciting announcement.
Monique Ramsey (08:58):
Wow. You were talking about the culture and so when you’re looking for a place, but you’re, when you’re also looking to staff that place with the team, what are you looking for as you’re looking for people?
Well, one of the questions that I ask is, why did you decide to come to medicine? In other words, is this a calling for you, a personal mission? In which case we need people who like us, want to take really good care of patients. We want to be kind to each other and we don’t wanna spend a lot of energy on negative, negative things within a team, that that really becomes a work family. And so finding people of like minds and then saying, here you will be able to, uh, express your values in as part of a team taking care of patients. And I actually just had this conversation with a new staff member assigned to this and she said she just loves being part of our organization because we’re so committed to quality, patient experiences. We’re so nice to each other. And she said, it’s fun to come to work. And she said, I really like that
That was beautifully put. I think the one thing that I’d add, which has been really fun to see in this process is we’ve hired a good number of new people over the past 12 months now. And we’re incredibly intentional in that recruiting. We know the values that we’re looking for and what we stand for and we make it very clear throughout the process. So when someone does join the team, it feels like they’ve been with us forever, right? They have the same excitement, energy, passion, you know, teamwork, growth mindset that we have as an organization have. And it’s just honestly probably the most fulfilling part of the expansion that we’re doing is bringing these awesome members onto our team.
Monique Ramsey (10:59):
Okay. And the last thing is, so I’ve been working on, I do a lot of design and so I’ve been working on new brochures for the med spa and I had this section that used to have something else in it that we didn’t need to talk about. And I thought, you know, let’s talk about our core values because I think that’s really important for an organization to not only let each other know what, why are we here, but then to our patient base. So I wanted maybe if each of you will speak to what these values are.
Of course. So the first one is that we’re patient obsessed. And to me and Marie, I think this is everything, right? Like we’re in the business of making people feel good. It’s a feeling that you’re coming in for. And so it goes way beyond the results that you get. It’s how you’re treated when you walk through the door. It’s, you know, feeling like you can ask whatever question that you’re educated throughout the journey. Transparent pricing, you get the follow up. Having a partner in that process, that’s everything in the patient experience. And so we wanna bring people on who share that mindset and that service orientation that providing great results is not enough. Right. And then the second one, which I’ll let you take Marie, because you’ve lived this.
The second one is we do the right thing. And this is unbelievably important because if you think about if all you have is a hammer, then the whole world’s a nail. And so we offer the full continuum of med spa services, but we’re part of a surgical practice. So the patient sometimes doesn’t quite know what they need or are they in the right part of the practice and they need trustworthy people who will say, yes, I could do that and it will get you this far or really where you’re better served by going to our med spa or you’re better served by going to our surgical practice. But the honesty and one of the, one of the new providers was telling me that today, how much it means to her to know that she has the backup of the surgical practice in case that’s what’s best for the patient.
I love that. The next one, um, is really that we work as a team and I love this value. I think it’s essential to this type of business. I think patients may not recognize when they come in and see a provider how much goes on behind the scenes. They have a medical assistant by their side, the front desk is doing everything they can to make sure things are checked out in the same way we have patient coordinators trying to have people find the best outcome for their journey. And then even behind the scenes we have you, Monique, doing incredible jobs, spreading awareness about what we’re doing, the rest of management bookkeeping, it’s so many people Yeah. Play into providing that excellent patient care. So to have people who realize, hey, I’m, I’m ready, I’m down to hop into whatever we need in order to provide the best patient care we can is so important. This is not a me sport at all.
Monique Ramsey (14:08):
. Yeah. There’s no, uh, it’s not my job, you know?
Monique Ramsey (14:12):
It’s, we all jump in and I think that’s a, that’s a really good point.
Yeah. We’ve often talked about how important trust is. So the other side of trust is being trustworthy and being dependable and action oriented. So that, and someone came in from Lofty Coffee next door and said, I’ve been wanting to do something, but I haven’t known what to do and I haven’t known who to do it with and this is clearly my place.
Monique Ramsey (14:46):
Oh my gosh. Today?
Yeah. Well within the last couple days,
Monique Ramsey (14:50):
Oh my goodness.
But that says something about the spirit and the, the whole environment that’s being created that it just seems safe to walk in. I don’t, and I’m not gonna be intimidated by a bunch of false looking people. They all look normal. They look good. Maybe they look too good, but they don’t look done.
Monique Ramsey (15:12):
A hundred percent. And then the last one is just that we spread joy. And this just goes back to we want people to come in and feel good about themselves. And you can do that in other ways and the results. And I think my favorite, uh, example of this was the video of our FedEx delivery guy who, who wanted to be filmed telling us, Hey, I deliver a lot of packages all over this community, but when I come into your suites at all the locations, you have the happiest, nicest, most smiling people, and it’s a pleasure delivering packages to you. And it, honestly, I wanna cry every time I watch it, but that, that’s what we should be doing. It doesn’t matter who you are, why you come in, this is a, a safe space and a fun space to come in. And we’re gonna, we’re gonna give you a little pep to your day, so.
Monique Ramsey (16:02):
Oh, that’s nice.
That’s the last one. Monique, I have a question for you before you wrap it up. Yeah. We’re, we’re switching the tables.
Monique Ramsey (16:08):
Monique Ramsey (16:09):
This never happens.
I know, I know. But it’s, you know, we’re celebrating the new opening and so I wanna know from you, what is your favorite spot or, or thing about the new site?
Monique Ramsey (16:21):
Wow. I, I lo I have to say I love that little prep room cuz I think it is the one thing that, you know, has been sort of missing. And we had talked about it back when we had dermatology way, way back when we were talking about converting a shared doctor’s office into the very idea that you guys have actually done here. And so I, I love everything about it. I love how open it is and how friendly and accessible it feels and the mural darling. But that, that room I think will add to the positive experience of so many patients just because that is a big factor when, you know, we do a lot of laser treatments and, um, so I I love that little, that little spot. It’s really pretty in there.
Good. I love to hear that.
I don’t know how you describe the chairs that are in that room, but they have a, a hood or a dome over them, so it’s like you’re sitting inside and protected and we have those chairs in the surgical practice. We have one in, in the La Jolla Med Spa and people just go to those chairs and there’s something about the safety of it and that’s somehow being held within the chair or something. I was so happy to see those chairs when I saw that room cuz I thought you won’t feel vulnerable.
Monique Ramsey (17:49):
While you’re sitting there with strangers.
We’re calling it the client lounge right now.
Monique Ramsey (17:54):
The client lounge.
Instead of the prep room. But you know. Oh, it’s a working title. The prep room sounds a little scary. , but if it’s a lounge.
Monique Ramsey (18:01):
Oh, a lounge.
Monique Ramsey (18:02):
Everybody likes a lounge.
Monique Ramsey (18:03):
Yeah. Oh, I love that. The client lounge. Yeah. Very good. Well thanks ladies. Anything else you wanna share that we didn’t cover?
I think you did a very thorough job, , but it was fun to sit here with Marie. We don’t get to do that.
Monique Ramsey (18:16):
Yeah. This was really fun. I know, I, I lied when I said poor, uh, Austin was about to have lunch and I’m like, no, no, no. Five minutes. Five minutes, .
This is so much better than eating.
Monique Ramsey (18:27):
It was more like 15 minutes. All right, well thanks ladies.
Speaker 4 (18:32):
Take a screenshot of this podcast episode with your phone and show it at your consultation or appointment or mention the promo code PODCAST to receive $25 off any service or product of $50 or more at La Jolla Cosmetic. La Jolla Cosmetic is located just off the I-5 San Diego Freeway in the XiMed Building on the Scripps Memorial Hospital campus. To learn more, go to ljcsc.com or follow the team on Instagram @ljcsc. The La Jolla Cosmetic Podcast is a production of The Axis.