World Gym closes after opening in 2011

Evicted: Downtown San Luis Obispo loses its muscle

jlynem@thetribunenews.comSeptember 25, 2012 

World Gym in downtown San Luis Obispo has closed.

The gym, located at 1050 Osos St., opened in 2011, offering customers an opportunity to work out on cardio equipment, free weights, in group classes or with personal trainers.

Operations manager Kaperie Anderson said the staff of about 10 people was recently told that the gym was being evicted from the building. Today marks the final day, she said.

Landlord Rob Rossi said the business owners had not paid rent. Rossi declined to provide financial details about how much tenants were required to pay or the lease terms, but said, “We thought we were working something out. At this juncture, whether something can be worked out is unclear, but we will complete the eviction either way.”

Anderson said there are three owners of the business who are based in Seattle. A message sent to the company’s email address went unanswered, and a corporate phone number was not in service.

Rossi said he is unclear who the involved parties are, saying that attorneys working on his behalf have been in discussions with “a variety of people who seem to have some level of involvement.”

“It’s a bit confusing,” he said. “Over the (time) that they’ve been a tenant, it has morphed several times.”

But Rossi does not expect the space to be vacant long.

“We’ve already had two other athletic companies contact us,” he said, noting that it’s too early to say which companies could be tenants. “My guess is that there’s so much interest in having it as a gym, in all likelihood, a new employer will be coming in, either a new one that’s a re-creation of the old group or a new tenant.”

As of Monday morning, Anderson was the lone employee in the facility, answering calls from clients who wanted to know what was happening and if they would receive refunds. Members are being told that refunds cannot be guaranteed, she said.

She did not know the number of gym memberships. The monthly rate was $15 for students and $19 for regular customers.

“Most of the staff has quit,” said Anderson, adding that the gym was closed Saturday and Sunday. “And we don’t know if we are going to be getting paychecks.”

The downtown San Luis Obispo location has been home to several fitness facilities in years past, including Gold’s Gym and Kennedy Club Fitness.

The World Gym brand was established in 1976 by Joe Gold, “one of the original ringleaders of Muscle Beach,” according to the company’s website.

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