TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Customers are concerned after a luxurious Tampa medical spa abruptly closes. 8 On Your Side Investigates has confirmed that Be Bellus Wellness & Aesthetics is permanently shut down.
The spa had been operating out of a building located at 3355 W. Bearss Avenue.
Gina Terlizzi purchased nearly $3,000 worth of services from Be Bellus in September. She was scheduled to receive treatments from the prepaid package this week.
“They sent me a text on Sunday saying that they were permanently closed,” said Terlizzi.
Terlizzi said the closure came without warning. She called 8 On Your Side because she was unable to get in touch with Be Bellus’ owner, Claudia Conde, via emails, calls or texts.
“It’s people’s hard-earned money,” she said. “All of a sudden it’s just gone.”
8 On Your Side Investigative Reporter Mahsa Saeidi spoke with Conde about her salon’s sudden closure.
“I want to start by saying I’m really sorry for everything,” stated Conde. “I will do everything that is in my power to give you the money back.”
Conde admits that she made many financial mistakes including purchasing expensive equipment and taking out high-interest loans. Hundreds of clients are impacted by this closure, according to Conde.
8 On Your Side asked what’s next for the people who feel they’ve been ripped off. Conde stated that she’s working around-the-clock to try and fix this situation.
She said she will continue providing laser hair removal, facials and micro-needling to clients with prepaid packages.
It’s unclear if these services will be provided at the current facility or another location.
“If you paid for services with Cryoskin,” she stated, “I won’t be able to provide that service anymore.”
The Cryoskin machine has been returned.
Conde is working on alternative treatments for those clients. She sent 8 On Your Side the following email stating three potential options:
- I have 2 FDA devices for permanent fat destruction, skin tightening and cellulite treatments and I can treat you with them. The treatments from these devices are much more expensive than what you paid, that was the reason we stop offering them to our patients. The protocol is 3 treatments every other week and you will get 30% fat destruction from the fat layer we treat. Also, Velashape 3 will help with circumference reduction and tightening the skin. I can create a package with any of those devices or combining both using what you paid for Cryoskin.
- If you pay for face treatments, I can offer hydrafacial and microneedling to help with skin tightening and wrinkle reduction.
- I will give you the money back after I sell the devices, furniture, computers and everything that we have. This is going to take some time (3-6 months I hope less than that) because selling a laser is not as easy as it sounds and I need to get as much money possible because like you, I have several patients that bought this treatments in the last 3 months and they didn’t get their treatments.
Conde tells 8 On Your Side Investigates she was renting space from the building located on Bearss Avenue. The other businesses at that location are not involved.
8 On Your Side Investigates will continue to follow this developing story.