Biz-Community (Cape Town)

4 March 2013

South Africa: Branson Invests R150 Million in Sandton Club

Virgin Active is investing R150m in its health club in Sandton, making it the 108th club in SA

The new site, which is under construction, is scheduled to open in August.

Speaking at the launch last week Sir Richard Branson said that he is investing in the health club business in honour of South Africa's former president, Nelson Mandela.

"Nelson Mandela called years ago asking me to save SA health clubs and you know when Madiba calls you jump onto the next plane," says the British businessman.

The club is designed for a discerning market and occupies a prime location in Alice Lane.

The Virgin Group founder Richard Branson , Virgin Active South Africa managing director Ross Faragher-Thomas and SA star swimmer Chad le Clos were there to see how this multi-million project was progressing.

"The R150m project will set a new standard in health clubs in South Africa," claims Faragher-Thomas.

"The gym will include a wellness suite with doctors, dieticians and physiotherapists, a state-of-the-art café and a spa. It will also provide transportation around Sandton", says Faragher-Thomas.

Faragher-Thomas stresses that "the focus is on the life of executives, which means the club is designed to offer a space away from work but with networking facilities, conference areas and breakaway rooms.

It has a rooftop training area for members providing a safe outdoor space to train. Membership will be capped at 4,000.

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