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Fishtown: Owner Vipul Patel Opened The City’s First Legal Marijuana Dispensary

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Behind tinted storefront glass and an intercom-locked door, lies Vipul Patel’s vision: spotless walls and slick flooring, flanked by flat screen displays and colored bleach-white, with a painstakingly grown ivy backdrop behind the front desk. Restore does its best to subvert the stigma and stereotyping around marijuana culture, at least superficially, a move that Patel made specifically for Philadelphia.

Restore Integrated Wellness Center is one of 27 original licensees for dispensing marijuana in Pennsylvania, and as of now the only such location in Philadelphia. Patel, co-owner and chief operating officer of the facility formed his idea three years ago from following friends in the prolific medical marijuana industry on the West Coast and built the practice with several friends on top of years of retail experience.

“It wasn’t like I just woke up one morning and said, ‘I want to be in the medical marijuana business’,” Patel said. “After I did some research into the medicine, I realized that this could be a win-win for everybody.”

Patel, who is originally from South Carolina, knew that he wanted to start the venture on the East Coast, specifically Pennsylvania, after they announced the original law’s passage in 2016. While Patel recalls

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