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Behind the Scenes: Belle & Cosy Redesigned SW14 Women Fitness

Categories: East Sheen,East Sheen News,News

Local fitness centre SW14 Women Fitness on Sheen Lane, formally part of the Curves fitness franchise network became an independent fitness centre a few months ago. While the centre had decorated its windows outside with a new logo, the gym still lacked personality, warmth and uniqueness to compete with surrounding gyms and attract customers. Local interior designer firm Belle & Cosy was tasked with the redesigning of the gym with the brief to give it a soul and its own identity, in just a weekend!

The concept of this fitness centre is that it is exclusively open to women, of all ages, and offers a 30 minutes workout on a circuit which combines strength work on machines and cardio. It is a very friendly and inclusive gym, where numerous friendships are made. Members feel like part of a family and very much at home when they come to the gym.

“The gym looked a bit out of date, the circulation into the workout space and the changing rooms was not easy, and its uniqueness and family spirit did not at all come across,” explains Alexandra the interior designer. “After a session to identify what made this gym unique and different, I pulled together a proposal, suggesting to bring warmth, femininity and a homely feel in order to reflect its positioning. The idea was to turn the gym into a boutique gym.”

To achieve that look, a superb deep and rich blue colour was added to some of the walls, to signpost the circulation from the front door to the changing rooms. “Painting the bottom half of the walls also allowed to protect them from marks and visually extend the main workout space.” A really fun feature wall was designed at the back with unevenly shaped polka-dots, and spaces to sit and chat were created with plenty of seats and chairs. Some of the existing furniture was combined with newly purchased Scandinavian pieces, soft furnishings (that you wouldn’t expect to find in a fitness centre) and plants, resulting in a more modern, cosy and fresh look.

“I was worried about what my members would say on the day of re-opening because the change was drastic, but it was a true hit! I have never seen so much enthusiasm and energy in their feedback”, said Lesley Cairns, owner of the gym.

Alexandra explained it was a real satisfaction to see members blown away as they walked back into the gym. “Hearing them express what they felt in the following words – warm, edgy, feminine, boutique-style or homely – just confirmed that we had perfectly brought to life the concept.

But Belle & Cosy’s help did not only focus on the redesign. “I also needed support on all the marketing strategy and tools (leaflets, eNewsletter, social media, referencing) to help raise awareness of the gym. Alexandra’s years of experience in this field was a great addition to the designing of the place. We are currently reviewing it all and she will be giving me some training on how to better engage with my members and use social media to build awareness.”

Lesley says that every morning as she opens the door of the gym, she feels energised and confident in the future. In fact, she is starting to see some results with new members signing up and existing ones visiting more frequently.

If you want to see the transformation, simply pop in or check-out the before and after pictures on Belle & Cosy’s website. To celebrate the make-over, SW14 Women Fitness will be doing a special offer until the 31st of July – 6 weeks for £49 (the normal membership is £45/month), and hosting a re-launch event on Wednesday June 13th. Do come along to support our local businesses.

Author: Bori Kiss

Bori has been a member of the ESV team since 2012. She loves long walks in Richmond Park and coffee that's not too hot to drink.