Established in 1955
‘The practice’ was established by an American dentist, Dr Carl Singer. While serving with the U S Marine Corps during World War II, Dr Singer came to New Zealand on recreational leave, meeting his future wife Kathleen in Masterton. The couple married in 1949 or 1950, in Chicago and returned to New Zealand in 1953.
Dr Singer re-qualified in dentistry at Dunedin’s Dental School in 1954 and moved to Hamilton the following year where he established his practice at the north end of Victoria Street, above what was then a cycle shop. The late 1920s building was once the Hamilton North Post Office and is one of the oldest commercial buildings in that part of the main street. It later became the base for the Lugton family real estate business, now occupying an adjacent site and currently known as Lugton First National. The first floor was continuously occupied by the practice from 1955 until October 1996.
Dr Singer died in 1969. The practice was purchased from his widow Kathleen by Hamilton dentists Dr Jim Ward and Dr Tony Burns and then on-sold to Te Kuiti dentist Dr Norman Harris early in 1970.
Dr Harris moved to Hamilton and owned the practice until 1986, when he sold it to Dr Zaf Khouri.
In 1994 another Hamilton dentist, Dr Graeme Bloxham, asked Dr Khouri to take over the care of his patients when he left Hamilton. Dr Bloxham’s patients were welcomed into the practice and have been an integral part of the practice family ever since.
In October of 1996, Dental Excellence relocated to 1100 Victoria Street, the present premises. The move allowed our patients to be cared for in a custom-designed environment which was bigger, newer, brighter, cleaner and much more accessible.
In 1997 a dental hygienist was incorporated into the team at Dental Excellence and this part of the practice is now firmly established as a vitally important aspect of our patients’ dental care.
In 2000 Dr Alan Miller became an associate of Dr Khouri’s, they formed Khouri Miller & Associates. This associateship was disbanded in 2011.
Two years later, in July 2013 Dr Fiona Bailey purchased Dental Excellence from Dr Khouri and has developed the practice and the team, continuing its strong tradition of quality preventative and restorative dental care.
Our sincere thanks to the following people for their kind assistance in compiling this history: Mr & Mrs Trevor & Joan Baron, Dr Brian Burkhart, Dr Tony Burns, Dr Alan Campbell, Dr Norman Harris, Dr Zaf Khouri, Mr David Lugton, Dr Roger Miller, Dr Ian Scott, Dr Jim Ward.