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Saturday February 16, 2019
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Ann Arbor Pharmacy

Not your average pharmacy

by Sabine Bickford

From the January, 2019 issue

Ziad Ghamraoui, owner of the new Ann Arbor Pharmacy, says it is "not your average pharmacy." His "boutique and apothecary" is more wholistic, and carries extensive lines of skin-care products.

Ghamraoui, who owns independent pharmacies in Saline and Milan, took over a small corner of what used to be Better Health Market, in the Lamp Post Plaza (Thrive Juicery, above, took over the rest). Originally from Lebanon, he says independent pharmacies and "upscale apothecaries," are more common in other countries. His models include stores in Barcelona, Paris, and his hometown, Beirut.

You certainly won't find many Walgreens with wooden shelves, plants scattered throughout, and artworks on the walls. It's a small space, but relatively open: products line the walls, and a single set of shelves goes down the store's middle.

Ghamraoui talks enthusiastically and knowledgeably about his high-end skin-care lines, including Avene (made with water from a thermal spring), Alaffia (made with African black soap), and Mustela (high quality lotions for infants). He sells regular drugstore products too, including bandages and cough medicine.

Another source of pride for Ghamraoui is the sidewall devoted entirely to supplements. "If somebody comes in and says 'I don't believe in medicine, I just want herbs,' we have an herb for every single thing here."

He says he listens to patients and gets to know them. He offers medication delivery, and he promises to special order whatever his patients need. "Ninety-nine percent of the time, we can get it the next day," he says.

When a young woman comes in and asks about treating a stove burn, he asks to see the damage and then quickly diagnoses it as minor, telling her to use Vaseline. "I was going to tell you about a line [I carry]," he says, "but I don't think it's that bad."

Ann Arbor Pharmacy, 2418 E. Stadium (Lamp Post Plaza). (734) 677-5555. Mon.-Fri. 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Sat. 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Sun. noon-4 p.m.     (end of article)


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