Aspire Rx relocates to Locust, across the street from, um, CVS?

March 4, 2013


Some of you may have noticed a new pharmacy next to recently opened Café Renata and just across the street from CVS near 43rd and Locust. So here’s the scoop – Aspire Rx, a smal independent pharmacy, has relocated to Locust from 45th Street.

OK, at first this seems like a really bad idea – small, independent pharmacy moves across the street from giant pharmacy/store. Folks on some local West Philly list-servs thought the idea seemed so bad that it must be some kind of front for something else.

It’s not. Aspire’s owner, Hetal Chudasama, said Aspire offers things that CVS doesn’t, such as compounding services, lower prices and serious customer care. They also offer free delivery, pet medications and some adult vaccines. She moved Aspire from 45th Street to Locust to the former location of a small Asian grocery to take advantage of the ample foot traffic.

By the way, Chudasama, a resident of West Philadelphia for eight years, knows what she’s talking about when it comes to her big box neighbor. After graduating from the University of the Science’s Philadelphia College of Pharmacy, she worked at – where else – CVS.

Aspire is open Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday 9-3 and Saturday 10-3. It’s closed Sundays.

12 Comments For This Post

  1. thos Says:

    What a depressing photo.

  2. Jay Says:


  3. Wild Turkey Says:

    I work in the Pharma industry. There are a lot of different kinds of pharmacies out there that serve patient populations in different ways (see Chudasama’s comment about “compounding services” — important!). Welcome to the ‘hood.

  4. Jerm Says:

    There are a number of these weird independent pharmacies popping up all over 40th and Market all of a sudden. I do not get it and the explanations above would make more sense if any of them actually advertised compounding services or perhaps had signage in a foreign language.

    In light of the pharmaceutical drug abuse epidemic (Unintentional overdose deaths involving prescription opioids have quadrupled since 1999 and now outnumber those from heroin and cocaine combined), I would like to know more about what sets these new pharmacies apart.

  5. lauren Says:

    I live across the street from this, and just a thought… it might help Aspire to seem a little less sketchy if they maybe ordered a sign that covers the whole PP Grocery logo. I get the whole compounding idea, but when I first saw that it was a pharmacy, across from CVS, with that sign, my mind was a little blown.

  6. Wild Turkey Says:

    Feel free to walk in there and talk to the owner if you want to learn more.

  7. Lydie Says:

    Stopped by here the other day, they were super friendly and helpful! Even offered to order things if they didn’t carry what I was looking for. I’ll definitely be going here before supporting the giant across the street.

  8. Christina Says:

    It can be particularly difficult to find a compounding pharmacy in some areas (though for WPhil, I think the Critical Care facility on Walnut has one now), so that’s a plus.

  9. Timothy Says:

    It doesn’t hurt for the CVS to have a little competition. Small businesses are great for all concerned. Still, I’m fond of that CVS and will continue to shop there.

  10. Anonymous Says:

    I admit I was also surprised to see this business pop up across the street from CVS, but am more than willing to give it a try given the comments people have been making and opportunity to support a small local business. I am also thrilled that they removed the metal grating from the windows (I am sure they have more sophisticated security measures in place) and hope that other businesses on that strip will follow suit (Clave/Renata has not had them for quite some time to no apparent detriment). It really improves the streetscape and improves visibility into the store, making it more welcoming. That being said, one thing I would recommend to the owner would be to move the pregnancy tests and other feminine hygiene products from next to the front window to a more private location in the store- if I were in the market, I would not want to be in the window deciding which option to choose for all my neighbors to see 🙂

  11. King Cheetah Says:

    Where did Aspire Rx move from?

    And I noticed this pharmacy the other day at night. It has such bright neon signs in the window. It’s more visible when it’s closed than when it’s open!

  12. JJ Says:

    Im glad something opened in that location but this place is an eyesore at night. It glows neon blue and looks like a tacky electronics store.

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