Despite the stereotypes associated with this industry, Susan Hwang is proving that “cannabis can be glamorous.” Her new luxury retail concept elevates the medical cannabis shopping experience by focusing on quality products and memorable service from highly-trained staff.
Appropriately named BEST Dispensary, Hwang’s brand has been called “the Louis Vuitton of cannabis,” she says. “We’re going to define what is the best by creating a standard beyond expectations.”
The flagship location, scheduled to open later this year in Mesa, Ariz., is a vertically integrated 30,000-square foot facility that emphasizes transparency—literally. “In the lobby, you can see through the glass walls into the showroom,” she explains. “On the other side, we have a conference room with a huge glass window, which looks into the cultivation and manufacturing facility.”
The multilevel interior, accented by customized display cases and vibrant orange chairs, might remind visitors of a high-end jewelry store. Beyond the visual impact of the sleek design, the layout emphasizes interaction between customers and consultants.
Courtesy of Susan Hwang
That’s why Hwang strategically decided against TV menus. “Rather than consumers looking at the menu and picking out what’s the cheapest or best value, I want our clients to interact with our employees so we can provide education and guidance after consulting with them,” she says.
Hwang’s expectations for quality extend to the products, which undergo an additional layer of third-party testing. “Our customers can count on us doing our due diligence to validate the testing provided by manufacturers and ensure products are handled and packaged with compliance, health, and safety,” she says.
However, she emphasizes that luxury doesn’t mean expensive. “When we talk about luxury, we’re talking about quality products and memorable experiences,” she says. “We’re not talking about excluding people with overpriced products.”
Although products are important,