Make us your home page

New pharmacy aims for personal touch in Palma Ceia

PALMA CEIA — He has been a pharmacist for 15 years now, but some of Brad Esposito's favorite work-related memories come from his time as a teenage delivery driver and stock boy at a small pharmacy in northwestern Pennsylvania.

Esposito loved it so much that he went to pharmacy school. After graduation, he ended up at a large retail chain where he quickly realized that not every pharmacy was so personable and quaint.

"It was an eye-opener: 'This is completely different from what I'm used to.' It was more impersonal and people hollering at you because they don't know you or understand what you're doing," he said.

Esposito never stopped thinking about re-creating those early experiences. On April 2, he opened his own neighborhood pharmacy, the Palma Ceia Health Mart Pharmacy at 2506 S MacDill Ave.

The 1,400-square-foot shop has a full-service pharmacy, that includes over-the-counter medicines, first aid and convenience items like greeting cards and fresh chocolates from Schakolad Chocolate Factory on Howard Avenue. The pharmacy also has the ability to compound or mix some medications.

"The one thing that people don't realize is that independent pharmacies offer the equivalent if not more of what chain pharmacies are offering," Esposito said.

Esposito calls his new pharmacy "a leap of faith" that came after more than a decade of dreaming (while working mostly for big chains) and a solid year of planning. His goal? To offer the kind of personal touch that small local pharmacies are known for.

"I don't have drive through; I don't have 24-hour service," he said. "You can call me, though. I'll give you my home phone number and if you have an emergency, I can open up my store for you.

"We'll bend over backwards for our customers. I'll do whatever it takes to keep them so I can take care of them and their kids. You build a relationship and you get to see their families grow along with yours. That's my goal. I want to be a neighborhood pharmacy that's here the next 20 years at least."

A grand opening will be Wednesday, when Esposito will offer free diabetes and cholesterol screenings. Hours at Palma Ceia Health Mart are 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 to 2 on Saturday. For more information, call (813) 839-8700.

New source to spruce up old doors, floors

As a builder with an affinity for architectural salvage, Larry Schiller knows the building and remodeling business isn't what it was a few years ago.

But a couple of themes have emerged in a troubled economy, he says: Owners of old homes still are on the hunt for vintage pieces, and the rest of the remodelers are looking for a bargain.

Schiller is hoping his architectural and design salvage shop, Schiller Salvage, will be a good fit.

A longtime collector of interesting vintage and salvaged items, Schiller has put all his stuff (and more) in a 2,400-square-foot warehouse and a 5,000-square-foot outdoor space at 1708 W Cypress St.

Inventory can vary greatly because he likes to price things to sell fast. This week, he said, he had on hand: vintage doors, ironwork, beveled glass, windows, hardware, columns and lighting. Next week, his shop will be salvaging heart pine flooring from a home being torn down.

Schiller also carries higher-end new items like tile, flooring, and carpet pieces that are left over from a job or never installed because of hanged plans.

In a twist to the typical architectural salvage shop, he also is offering what he and wife, Charlie (an interior designer), call "design salvage," which are furniture and accessories from designers that never made it to the home or office they were purchased for.

In Tampa, architectural salvage shops have "come and gone," Schiller said. "We're hoping the mix of the designer stuff and the architectural stuff should help us survive."

Hours at Schiller Salvage are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday (and most Saturdays) and by appointment. The website:

Do you know something that should be everybody's business? Call 226-3394 or e-mail

New pharmacy aims for personal touch in Palma Ceia 04/29/10 [Last modified: Wednesday, April 28, 2010 5:14pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Law firm's Russia ties prove nothing about Trump


    The statement

    "Law firm @POTUS used to show he has no ties to Russia was named Russia Law Firm of the Year for their extensive ties to Russia. Unreal."

    Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., stands during a media availability on Capitol Hill, Monday, June 20, 2016 in Washington. A divided Senate blocked rival election-year plans to curb guns on Monday, eight days after the horror of Orlando's mass shooting intensified pressure on lawmakers to act but knotted them in gridlock anyway — even over restricting firearms for terrorists. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
  2. Pasco county lawyer disbarred for taking woman's money

    Real Estate

    NEW PORT RICHEY — The Florida Supreme Court on Thursday disbarred Pasco County attorney and former congressional candidate Constantine Kalogianis.

    The Florida Supreme Court on Thursday disbarred Pasco County attorney and former congressional candidate Constantine Kalogianis. 
[2016 booking photo via Pasco County Sheriff's Office]
  3. Rick Scott signs package of tax breaks

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Gov. Rick Scott signed a tax cut package Thursday that — while vastly scaled back from what he wanted — eliminates the so-called "tampon tax" and offers tax holidays for back-to-school shoppers and Floridians preparing for hurricane season.

    Florida Governor Rick Scott signed a tax cut package that will cost state coffers $91.6 million during the upcoming year. [Joe Raedle | Getty Images]
  4. FBI probes fraudster's alleged church scam following Tampa Bay Times report

    Real Estate

    PLANT CITY — Once again, the FBI is investigating felon fraudster Victor Thomas Clavizzao.

    The FBI is investigating convicted mortgage fraudster Victor Thomas Clavizzao on new allegations following a Tampa Bay Times report.
[TImes file photo]

  5. Tampa Bay is ground-zero for assignment of benefits cases over broken auto glass


    When Rachel Thorpe tried to renew her auto insurance last year for her Toyta RAV4, she was stunned to see her monthly premium had nearly doubled to $600. The Sarasota driver was baffled since her only recent claim was over a broken windshield.

    Auto glass lawsuits filed by a third party (through what's known as assignment of benefits) are skyrocketing in Tampa Bay.
[Times file photo]