Estimated reading time: 5 minutes
Bright, bold and vibrant, Precision Dental was designed to attract young professionals—and it’s worked beautifully. By Kerryn Ramsey
When Dr Billy Choi was setting up Precision Dental in Brisbane’s inner-city suburb of Fortitude Valley, he had chosen a decisive colour palette. The business was branded with dark and light blues on the business logo, website and stationery. When his wife suggested the waiting area and furniture should feature bright orange for vibrancy, he initially had some serious doubts.
“I’m not sure how she came up with the idea,” says Dr Choi, “but from the moment I saw it, I loved it. Everyone comments on it—patients, reps, delivery people—and the feedback is always positive. Most people say it makes them feel calm and happy, something they didn’t expect in a dental practice.”
Just 1.5 kilometres from Brisbane’s CBD, Fortitude Valley is a growing suburb with a lively entertainment area, extensive office buildings and a young professional population. Dr Choi wanted to attract this demographic to his practice. His plan was to offer high-quality dentistry utilising digital technology while going an extra mile in regard to patient comfort. As it turns out, the orange waiting area has paid dividends too. “Everyone who visits talks about the decor and how much they like the feel of our practice,” says Dr Choi. “You often see these types of comments on our Google reviews.”
When Dr Choi was searching for a site for his new practice, he wanted easy access, plenty of passing trade, ample parking and a central location. He found it in a multi-storey office building in the centre of Fortitude Valley. The ground floor had an array of food shops and an escalator up to the first floor where an eligible shop space was vacant. The first floor was also the ground floor for an intersecting street.
“The building was about four years old and the premises had never been rented,” says Dr Choi. “It was an empty shell with high ceilings and it looked out onto the building’s car park. It offered great exposure and the escalator made access simple. There was also space for substantial signage. I knew this site had the potential to be transformed into my dental practice.”
Dr Choi engaged Elite Fitout Solutions to design and lay out his practice. The 136-square-metre space has three surgeries, a consult/X-ray room, a dental lab, a steri room, separate reception and waiting areas, and staff and office amenities. All the treatment rooms face the outside of the building allowing plenty of natural light while maintaining lines of privacy.
“Elite was fantastic,” says Dr Choi. “They provide easy communication and I was kept well informed with the progress of the build. I was very impressed in how they utilised every square metre of space and kept a natural flow throughout the practice.”
Dr Choi was determined not to make his business look like a dental surgery. The high ceilings, orange colour and comfy furniture in the reception/waiting area feel relaxed and boutique-like. A large television shows soothing images of scenery, animations and music—but nothing dental related.
“I want my clients to forget about dentistry, relax and just do their thing,” says Dr Choi.
His dedication to providing patient comfort has seen Precision Dental adopt a range of measures. The practice uses the latest generation of quiet instruments and equipment and is an odour-free environment. The ergonomic dental chairs have memory foam upholstery, and the surgeries have ceiling mounted televisions with wireless headphones. Patients can also be provided with soft pillows and blankets, a service much appreciated by those who are anxious or have a dental phobia.
To ensure there’s no stress related to the cost of treatment, Dr Choi has a complete list of prices and fees on the practice website. He believes that being completely transparent about price attracts more patients and gets them to engage. His experience is that once a patient visits the practice and sees what’s on offer, they don’t go anywhere else.
“It’s the little things that make the difference,” says Dr Choi. “These days, dentistry is a very competitive business. When I graduated in 2003, there were 50 graduates in the entire state. Now, 300 to 400 graduates in Queensland enter the industry every year. We had to do something to stand out. We had to make our business different from all the others.”
An extensive car park offering free two-hour parking right beside the practice has worked to Dr Choi’s advantage. Clients can easily shop, eat and visit the dentist. Escalators carry them to the front door of the practice and wheelchair-friendly elevators are plentiful.
“My practice was constructed with wheelchair users in mind,” says Dr Choi. “Electric or manual chairs can be operated without issues from the front door to the surgeries and back. Elite Fitout designed the space with adequate dimensions to make the business fully accessible for everyone.”
Precision Dental opened its doors in 2014 and after nine years in operation, it looks as fresh and new as day one. Dr Choi once again credits Elite Fitout with providing quality work throughout the build, particularly with final touches in corners, painting and floor coverings.
“I’m dedicated to ensuring that everything is really clean,” says Dr Choi. “All the walls are unscratched and unmarked. The orange feature colour is as bright and vibrant as when we opened. The furniture is unstained with no wear or tear. Our waiting area is a visual point of difference and a reflection of the care and quality of the work we provide.”