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the same – I try to create gyms where people will feel sexy.

How have you funded the new fitness clubs? Through our investors, who have been with us right from the beginning. I don’t want to name them right now.

What are your plans over the next 12 months? I’m looking for locations in Las Vegas, which I think is a great market and a great opportunity. I’m always looking in New York, but the real estate market here is a lot tougher than in LA. We’re also looking in some secondary markets, including Chicago.

How many David Barton clubs would you like to open? I think over the next couple of years we’ll get to 15 and see how it goes.

Would you ever think about opening gyms outside of the US? I get a lot of calls from real estate developers, investors and operators in

other countries. Certainly it’s an exciting consideration and I’m open to it. I think there are a lot of places where the concept could do so well – it’s just about finding the right deal and the right opportunity. I definitely think it’s on the horizon.

How did you celebrate David Barton Gyms’ 20th anniversary? I had a huge workout and then threw a big party in one of my gyms. We’re well known for great parties and this was no exception.

What motivates you? My son is 18. The other night I went to a dinner for parents of kids who were about to graduate. I see this next generation and I feel that what we do is so important. Fitness will hopefully save the ever-declining health of my country. Here, food and inactivity is killing people. I’m really motivated to set the bar high and to make this business about quality and professionalism. It’s not out of reach for anyone to be healthy, to feel good and to have the body they dream of having. Our

trademark tagline is ‘look better naked’, and I’m not ashamed of how shallow that may sound. I really do believe that, when somebody works out in my gym and feels good in their body, they leave here and become a better lawyer or politician or artist or whatever their contribution to the world may be. I’m motivated by trying to make an impact on my little corner of the world.

How would your friends describe you? And your critics? My friends would describe me as someone who loves to have a good time. I love what I do, probably because most of the time I do what I love. My life is filled with things I love; I love my business, I love being in the gym. I live a charmed life. I don’t know what my critics say, because I don’t speak with them.

What do you do for pleasure? I’m a musician – I play the drums. I’ve played in a lot of punk rock bands, and right now I’m in a band called the Liquid Blonde, which plays electronic rock. I think they’re going to do really well. I love hanging out with my son, while he’ll still hang out with me, and I love spending time with my schnauzer, Bippy.

What’s your favourite film and book? I have to read so much about exercise science, just to keep up on it, as I still work a lot with the trainers. I read a lot on biochemistry, movement science, neuroscience and everything that relates to exercise. My all-time favourite book is Crime and Punishment though. I’ve probably read it 20 times. My favourite movie ever is Barry

Lyndon, Stanley Kubrick’s epic period piece. It’s really a film-making masterpiece – he used genuine antique costumes, and filmed the candlelit scenes without using any artificial light. It’s a work of art.

What have been your highest and lowest points?

My highest point was opening my first gym. I fought so hard for it. I started out without two pennies to rub together, and there I was opening this gym, which was my dream. It was the greatest high. As for the lowest point, I can’t think

of one. Since opening my first gym, there have been a lot of struggles, but there’s never been anything I didn’t think I could resolve. I’m a very positive person and I never get that down.

The David Barton Spa at the Perry hotel in Miami features 10 treatment rooms 80 Read Health Club Management online at magali robathan

october 2012 © cybertrek 2012


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