The entrance is out of the way. The sign outside is small.
But Bluepoint Wellness will have a big impact.
Area residents suffering from cancer, Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis and other debilitating diseases — and who qualify under strict conditions — no longer have to travel to Bethel or Milford for medical marijuana.
Westport’s dispensary fills a need in lower Fairfield County. Despite fears of a few people during the long application and permit process, it will not attract hordes of stoners, turn children into addicts, or change the town irrevocably.
In fact — unless you need relief from chronic pain — you won’t even know it’s here.
And you sure can’t get inside.
Earlier this week, I got a look. I was lucky: Once it opens, only people with state-issued medical marijuana registration (and their caregivers, also certified by the state) will be allowed in.
The soft opening is today. The official opening is Monday.
Bluepoint Wellness occupies 4,200 square feet in what was most recently Coco Spa. That’s on the side of the shopping plaza, behind the former Pier 1.
I was met by David Lipton — a longtime Westporter, co-founder of Bluepoint Wellness, and CEO of Advanced Grow Labs, one of Connecticut’s 4 licensed medical marijuana producers.
We were joined by Nick Tamborrino. Co-owner and manager of Bluepoint, he has both a pharmacology degree and MBA.
The partners searched all over town for the best location. They like this spot. It’s on the Post Road, but relatively private. There’s nearby parking — important for medical patients. They added a handicap ramp for ease of access.
Bluepoint applied for a permit in April 2018. They got their license 8 months later. Construction began June 1.
“We wanted to create a welcoming, professional, safe environment,” Tamborrino says. “The aesthetics are reflective of Westport — beach-y.”
The interior is open and inviting. There’s a large reception room with comfortable furniture; private rooms for pharmacy consultations, and a customer service desk. Products are stored in a secure vault.
On an initial visit, a patient meets with one of Bluepoint’s 5 pharmacists. They go over medical records and medication history, and establish treatment goals. For example, a side effect of cancer treatment can be loss of appetite. So in addition to lessening pain, the right product would stimulate appetite.
Bluepoint offers inhalation and oil products, capsules, tablets, sublingual sprays, tinctures, topicals, lotions, bath balms, salts, teas, and edibles like cookies, brownies, granola and honeys. State law prohibits the sale of gummies, chocolates and candies.
All products are safety-sealed, and child-resistant.
Each one is tested by a 3rd-party lab too, for impurities and microbials.
Connecticut’s program is highly regulated. It’s one of the few states where medical marijuana is dispensed by certified pharmacists.
Of the 38,000 Connecticut residents certified for medical marijuana, 8,360 are in Fairfield County. For many, Bethel and Milford were long, painful treks.
Bluepoint Wellness of Westport will be a welcome relief.