NEW YORK — Wave bye-bye to the lab coats.
Although the name attached to the door — New York Dermatology Group — is sufficiently business-y, the interior of this new perfect-skin emporium on lower Fifth Avenue here is decidedly lush. Eleven thousand square feet of blond wood, massive windows and spacious treatment rooms, it’s the antithesis of the sterile quarters well-heeled New Yorkers typically find themselves in when they’re in need of a little Rogaine or a blast of Botox.
Headed by rising star dermatologist David Colbert, there are several other professionals accounting for this practice’s “group” moniker: dermatologist Neha Parikh, research clinician Jovianna DiCarlo, acupuncturists Mary Joo and Nina Hernandez and cosmetologist Elizabeth Maslowska.
And then there’s Marianne Gillow, a physician who acts as the consortium’s “patient experience coordinator.” Essentially, Gillow samples every New York Dermatology Group treatment before it’s greenlighted for patients. Whether it’s a Parisian Peel Microdermabrasion or a Titan Laser “Face Lift,” if it doesn’t pass muster with Gillow, it just doesn’t happen.
The new space, conceived and executed by architect Roger Fairey, is just a few blocks from Colbert and company’s previous digs. “We were in our other location for five years, but we just outgrew it,” he said. “And we knew we wanted to expand and try to brand ourselves.
“Plus, we needed more doctors,” added Colbert. “I had been interviewing people for years, but it’s hard to find doctors who are good at both cosmetic and medical dermatology.”
A native of Iowa who has received extensive training in both dermatology and internal medicine, Colbert has crisscrossed the globe throughout his career. Fluent in French, he logged a year in Paris, living in the Marais and commuting to the Chanel C.E.R.I.E.S. research labs on the outskirts of the city.
Despite his intentions to continue personally seeing between 30 to 40 patients a day, Colbert’s VIP schedule keeps him on the move. Through his brother-in-law Todd Hallowel, an executive producer of several Ron Howard films, Colbert has consulted on a number of high-profile movies, including “A Beautiful Mind,” “The Missing” and the upcoming “Cinderella Man.” Next year, he’ll pop back over to France to consult on the set of “The Da Vinci Code.”
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While he won’t drop any juicy names, Colbert also claims to minister to a slew of daytime TV and soap stars. “Whenever they’re finished shooting for the day, they pop by for injections or other services,” he said. “We also do a lot of rock stars, although I can’t tell you who. But we have some of the biggest stars in the music industry here.”
Not that Colbert isn’t down with the common folk. “I still see lots of regular, everyday patients,” he said. “Everyone always just wants to read about the celebrities. But most of the people in the world aren’t celebrities. They’re just normal, hardworking people.”
Normal, hardworking people with money to burn on beauty treatments, that is. While every ordinary skin ailment can be dealt with at New York Dermatology Group, the practice offers a comprehensive menu of cutting-edge cosmetic treatments. The $900 Acu-Lume Rejuvenation Facial, for example, is a three-step treatment that starts with a laser tightening of the skin followed by both acupuncture and acupressure. The $300, 45-minute Medi-Cure also deploys a laser to tone and firm the feet, followed by microdermabrasion to remove dead skin and two separate peels. A full range of all the latest fillers is also on offer, including Restylane, Perlane, Sculptra and Fascian.
In addition, Colbert has partnered with La Roche-Posay, the L’Oréal-owned dermatological skin care brand, and is getting the early break on a number of the line’s latest products. One such item is Mela-D Skin Lightening Daily Lotion, a new hyperpigmentation treatment pairing 2 percent hydroquinone with lipohydroxy acid and a proprietary sunscreen complex of octocrylene and Parsol 1789.
Despite the solid buzz building around Colbert and his luxe layout, the doctor insists he’s just part of a new “downtown dermatology” wave.
“There are a lot of us down here now,” he said. “I know of four or five practices around here, although they might not be as big as this one.
“We have a vision,” Colbert added. “We’re not old-fashioned. We’re not like those dull-carpeted, subbasement dermatology offices that everyone thinks they have to go to because they live on the Upper East Side. We’re the downtown dermatologists.”