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Spa Snapshot: Piel Medical Aesthetics

Cathy Christensen April 2011 issue of Skin Inc. magazine
Piel Medical Aesthetics

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The small, waterfront city of Benicia, California, located near San Francisco, has been called home by sculptors, painters and many other artists, making it the perfect setting for Piel Medical Aesthetics. With the intention of bringing another form of art—cosmetic art—to the area, the medical spa was founded in 2004 by Rita Wergowske and her husband Gilbert Wergowske, MD. Although the location is medically directed by Dr. Wergowske, a board-certified physician in internal and geriatric medicine, Piel is Rita’s labor of love. As a registered nurse and board-certified wound-specialist, Rita became certified to do injections in 2003, but couldn’t find any office building that would lease space to her. “They were afraid of me,” laughs Rita, amazed at how far medical esthetics has come. “I have a background in neonatal intensive care, so I am a specialist at making tiny injections.” She opened Piel Medical Aesthetics’ doors in 2004 after much research and due diligence.

One of the most important business lessons Rita learned early on was the value of creating her business from scratch. “You can do a lot of the work and research on your own when opening a business, but be sure to have your work double-checked by an attorney,” she emphasizes.

With Dr. Wergowske’s practice five minutes from the medical spa, he works very closely with the facility, reviewing all decisions before they are made. Safety is the No. 1 concern at Piel Medical Aesthetics, according to Rita. “We have comprehensive standards of practice and a complete orientation for the nurses and doctors who we hire. Dr. Wergowske reviews their credentials and does a background check, and we monitor them during a grace period after the hire to see how they are going to work with our clients. You just have to take a close look and see where their skills are.”

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Retail Area

The retail area of Piel Medical Aesthetics includes skin care products, as well as vitamins and supplements to be sold to clients and consumers.

Refreshment Area

Refreshments are offered to Piel clients to provide a homey and healthy ambiance.

Reception Area

The reception area of Piel features clean, classic decor.

Details: Piel Medical Aesthetics


1440 E. 2nd St., Suite C

Benecia, CA 94510


Established: 2004

Owners: Rita and Gilbert Wergowske, MD

Staff: One nurse injectioner, one freelance nurse, one physician, two estheticians, one massage therapist and one office manager

Hours: Monday–Friday, 10:30 am–5:30 pm

Product lines: Amazon Herb Products, DermaQuest Skin Therapy, Jan Marini Skin Research, Lluvia, M’lis, Obagi Medical Products and Standard Enzyme Company

Facility philosophy: Honesty, education and considering the clients’ needs

Most popular treatment: Botox

Most unique spa feature: Combining esthetics, medical esthetics and the Center for Intelligent Health

Business collaborations: The facility has a referral situation with several area hair salons and estheticians, as well as a plastic surgeon

Inspiration: Beauty from the inside out

Future plans: Official launch of the Center for Intelligent Health

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