Oral Health Group

Office Space: McAllister Dentistry

April 1, 2022
by Darcie Galbraith, BA, Interior Design Coach; Peter Barry, CMC, Practice Success Coach

THE WHY: Owner’s story
McAllister Dentistry is located in the heart of Ottawa and is the brainchild of Dr. Jessie McAllister. She initially had concurrent aspirations of being a medical doctor. Drawing inspiration from her physician grandfather and artistic mother, she ultimately decided to choose dentistry as the exciting path that would allow her to blend artistry with her passion for health sciences. After graduating in 2011 from University of Toronto, she gained valuable experience as an associate while contemplating her professional opportunities ahead. In 2017, with her husband and young toddler at home, they turned their entrepreneurial vision of opening a beautiful practice into reality.


THE HOW: Planning & preparation
Owning a practice was something Dr. McAllister always envisioned in the back of her mind. She had not yet initiated the steps towards pursuing this dream when one day while driving to an “associateship interview” an opportunity for a space unexpectedly revealed itself. She saw a “for lease” sign in the window of a new, open-air shopping centre that inspired her to immediately explore the opportunity further. Upon calling the number and viewing the space, she fell in love with its geographical location, physical layout and visible position within the strip mall. The internal layout posed a few challenges that required some creative re-configuration and strategic design planning. Ultimately, they were able to fit in a fourth operatory by taking advantage of the ultra high lofty ceilings and building an upper-level mezzanine into the plans (thereby adding square footage to the overall practice). After receiving approval from the city, the contractor took approximately four months to transform the design into the beautiful office she practises in today.

THE RESULTS: Technical design features
Dr. McAllister decided to blend her desire for a loft-style, historic look with the contemporary outer architectural design of the modern open-air mall. Using creative décor features and well-planned stylizing, the contrasting atmosphere was artistically blended into the interior of the space. Upon looking around, you’ll notice the modern, subtle details that went into creating an overall bright, airy, loft-like appeal. Light paint on the walls, glass railings throughout, and exposed ceilings that raise the height of the overall space enhance the open-air feeling one would expect in lofty architecture. They also placed wall-mounted custom-made floating cabinetry inside each operatory, adding a stylish and spacious visual appeal (due to the wall behind each cabinet visibly extending all the way down to the floor).

THE IMPACT: Empowered practice outcomes
McAllister Dentistry is well integrated into the local community and excited to be growing steadily. The size of the team has expanded to meet the flow of patients seeking care in their beautiful dental office. Dr. McAllister has also become involved in philanthropy as a way of spreading the important message about good oral health to the public. She is a part of a mom group that supports mothers who are balancing their family lives with professional careers. She has also been featured on local TV stations and loves to share her passion for dental health wherever she can. McAllister Dentistry is passionate about serving great dental healthcare into the hearts and lives of their patients.

Contractor: Westrade Construction
Equipment Supplier: Patterson Dental

About the Authors

Darcie is co-founder of Bella Vita Designs Inc.; an interior design company specializing in creating beautiful functional spaces for start-ups, expanding, relocating or remodeling your dream practice. To have your proud story & unique office design featured we can be reached at darcie@bellavitadesigns.ca / IG @bellavitadesignsinc / 905-716-8528.

Peter Barry is Founder of Practice Mastery Inc., a Team Development Coaching company that empowers the growth & development needs of your practice. He provides customized group & one on-one “Success Training” to dental professionals & industry companies across N. America. IG @peterbarrycoach, peter@practicemastery.com, www.practicemastery.com, or 416.568.5456.

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