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Gold’s Gym enters region with Reno, Sparks clubs

JUDITH HARLAN

Northern Nevadans will soon have the same opportunities that Arnold Schwarzenegger had to pump iron at Gold’s Gym.

Franchisee Brad Kloss, owner of five locations in Minnesota, and a major owner in Westfit LLC, plans to open two Gold’s Gyms in the area.

The entry into the market is the first expansion for the franchisee, says Jamie Nelson, vice president of development and training for the Minnesota locations, a business held under the name Fitpro LLC.

And it’s just a first step into the greater Reno area market.

The two initial facilities, both about 33,000 square-feet one at the Galleria, Galleria Parkway in Sparks and one at the Longley Town Center at Longley and McCarran in Reno are upscale versions of the gym.

They offer pools, smoothie bars, yoga studios, and all of the usual amenities, including 14,000 square feet of cardio and weight equipment.

They’ll both have lounges and kids’ clubs and indoor playgrounds, says Nelson, and the Sparks facility will have additional amenities, too.

The additionals will be determined by market research still to be done.

The leases, negotiated by Kelly Bland, a Colliers International broker, are build-to-suit properties.

The company, says Nelson, is also studying the Carson City area, and is talking, long-term, of additional northern Nevada Gold’s Gym locations.

“We would not go to Reno if we didn’t feel it could handle more than two Gold’s Gyms in time,” he says.

The first two to open are being positioned to “take a strong foothold in the community.” The first one to go up,Nelson adds,will be the south Reno gym.

Plans are for it to be open for workouts by mid- to late-spring.

Meanwhile, he says, a preview center which is a small, storefront gym at Longley and McCarran, will be open by November.

The Sparks facility will follow about 30 to 100 days behind the Reno one, and it, too, has a preview center in the plans.

The upscale Gold’s Gyms targets 30-plus executives with families, says Nelson, finding a niche especially among female executives in this demographic.

The pricing, though not yet established, will be affordable,Nelson says.

But upscale Gold’s Gyms do not position themselves as low-cost gyms.

The gyms are upscale, and the prices reflect that position.

Interestingly, Nelson adds, the West is known in the gym business for its price-cutting.

Facilities in the Midwest never cut prices; they add amenities.

“We feel we can add amenities” for the region, and also be affordable, he says.

Reno and Sparks attracted the franchisee not just because the cities have a customer base now, but because the company sees the area as a region in a growth phase.”We plan to grow with Reno,” says Nelson.

The club was attracted, too, he adds, by the number of $65,000-plus households in the Sparks area and $35,000 and above in the Reno area, populations that historically support upscale clubs.

Gold’s Gym will be looking to the local population for a staff that will total 70 to 80 people, including 15 to 20 full-time trainers.


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