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New wellness franchise to open in Sundial plaza

Veronica Brezina

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As St. Petersburg-based Paradise Ventures and Ally Capital Group are finalizing the permitting documents to redevelop the Sundial shopping center, the group has attracted a new tenant. 

Serotonin Center, a Central Florida-based wellness and anti-aging franchise established in 2021 by fitness industry entrepreneur Eric Casaburi, will debut in the former Marilyn Monroe Spa space in the 85,357-square-foot shopping center. 

The center will offer hormone restoration therapies, weight control, immunity and recovery treatments. 

“We were looking for a space in downtown St. Petersburg and wanted to be surrounded by a mix of co-tenants,” Serotonin franchisee Trudy Fehlinger said. “We love the beach and urban vibe the city has. This new space is exactly what we were looking for.” 

She and her husband, Charles, said they will complete the construction drawings next week and expect to start renovating the 3,000-square-foot space in September. They are targeting a December opening date. 

A rendering of the new Sundial courtyard. 

The center will offer red light therapy beds, which use light energy to help treat aging skin, and CoolSculpting services, a process that eliminates fat cells by freezing them.  

The Sundial location is the first of 10 planned centers the Fehlingers will open across Southwest Florida. 

The couple, who reside in Windermere, worked with Tampa broker Tyler McRae, who connected with Paradise Ventures CEO Mike Connor and Director of Real Estate Jon Mott. 

“We both have started and run other businesses. This will be the first business we’ve done together starting from the ground up,” Trudy said. The Fehlingers moved to Central Florida from Pennsylvania several years ago. 

“We were already talking about opening wellness centers here. One day we passed Serotonin’s office and looked at their website. We learned about the comprehensive services at the centers and instantly felt a connection with the concept,” Trudy said. 

Each center will have roughly 10 employees. There will be a medical director, who must be a licensed physician, and a health coach, who will manage the medical weight loss program and provide nutrition and exercise counseling. The centers will also have certified nurses. 

The new center is one of several new concepts that will be coming to the Sundial. 

Earlier this week, the owners of Forbici Modern Italian, a South Tampa staple, announced plans to open in the plaza. 

Jeff Gigante, co-founder of Foribic’s parent company Next Level Brands, said the design process is underway for an indoor-outdoor facility that will encompass 10,000 square feet. He expects it to open in Locale Market’s former space by spring 2024.

A rendering of the Sundial’s future corridor and outdoor courtyard. 

Connor’s team is engaging with fitness operators to lease the space previously occupied by the Spice and Tea Exchange. 

He said the group is also talking with coffee shop owners and a high-end furniture retailer about leasing opportunities. 

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1 Comment

1 Comment

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    Jane Sayler

    July 23, 2023at1:33 pm

    How about pursuing an Apple Store for the Sundial space? We really need it in St Pete!

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