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Behind the scenes at Eden One, Dublin’s most exclusive destination spa and gym

Already dubbed “Ireland’s priciest gym” by a daily broadsheet, Dublin’s Eden One is attracting attention from an international audience. Charlie Bourne, Managing Director of Eden day spa, gym, and members’ club, explains the vision behind the exclusive facility. Charlie Bourne has been in the fitness industry for 27 years. In that time, he’s seen the emergence of numerous business models and fitness trends. When he was asked to develop a central-Dublin venue into Ireland’s most prestigious gym, he knew exactly what he wanted to achieve.

At the tail end of 2018, I was standing outside Number One Ballsbridge,” he explains. “The venue was already home to high-end apartments, retail, and businesses. It took me less than 30 seconds to agree to developing a gym here. But I wanted to do something different – a first, not just in Ireland but anywhere.”

Charlie had previously partnered with the same developers on a successful commercial club in West London, which maxed out its membership within four months of opening. Charlie knew it was partly down to the heavily design-led aesthetic and uncompromising focus on a quality customer experience.

We wanted to do something exceptional in Dublin,” he explains. “We had learned a lot from our previous developments in London, but Dublin has different experiences and expectations for luxury leisure.” “The initial aim was the provide the best gym in Dublin,” he says, “then we thought about having the best spa in Dublin. We began looking at the best examples of compact spas, boutique gyms, and member experiences.

Taking inspiration from best-in-class examples around the world, Charlie developed a completely new combination of models in Eden One. “We have built a phenomenal gym, and a luxury spa of a size typically be associated with a hotel, all combined with a members’ club for dining and networking. Crucially, we have done all this without any accommodation.

Eden One gym exclusively chooses Technogym equipment

Eden One offers 7,500 sq. ft of gym space, with 60 pieces of Technogym cardio and resistance kit, including the premium Artis range and Skill Line offering. “The gym is fully equipped so people have a complete choice of workout equipment,” says Charlie, “and the gym floor has been designed so our trainers can host small group classes.

Eden One attracts a well-travelled clientele, familiar with Technogym from the high-level hotels and resorts they stay at. Charlie says the Technogym name is excellent in appealing to this customer base, but it doesn’t stop with the equipment. The complete connectiveness means Eden One can take a member from biometric testing, to programming, and PT without missing a beat.

The mywellness app is another really useful tool for providing a seamless member journey with valuable extras,” he explains. “We can run everything from onboarding to assessment and programming via the app, and we would eventually like 100%-member uptake of mywellness.

Charlie explains this is the first time he has used exclusively Technogym within a gym development project. Eden One’s first wave of members love the space, the high-end look of the gym, and the ease of use offered by the Technogym machines.

There is nothing like Technogym on the market. The entire brand is very design-led, and the aesthetic fits perfectly with our vision. We are delighted to have wall-to-wall Technogym in our gym floor and in all three studios.

Just one week after opening, Eden One already had a packed timetable of 100+ studio classes with members lining up to enjoy the immersive experience led by in-house international level trainers. “We have gathered inspiration from the most dedicated boutique studios around the world to create three distinct studios here, all kitted out with kit from our partner Technogym,” says Charlie.
The stunning Indoor Cycle studio provides a fully-immersive experience with a large LCD wall of screens, and Technogym Group Cycle. The HIIT studio is design-led with a boutique aesthetic (which is still a new concept to the Irish market) and features Skillrun. The Mind/Body studio uses audio-visual design to create an immersive ambience for yoga and wellness classes.

Partnering with Technogym was the obvious choice for Eden One,” says Charlie. “It’s been a really smooth operation from the start. Technogym offered advice on working out what kit we needed, and support on our layout. Installation was immaculate, working around other installs and being there exactly when we needed them. Everything has been backed up with training and ongoing support.” Charlie plans to open more Eden sites in Ireland, plus an Eden Raw in the UK during 2020.

A 360 Approach to Daily Wellness

Eden One (and Eden Elements, the spa) exists to give people one place to come for all their fitness, leisure, and meeting space needs. Charlie says this is an effort to combat the fragmented nature of the leisure industry, which struggles to meet the demands of busy consumers.

We wanted to develop a destination which offers everything,” he explains. “People shouldn’t need several memberships to get what they want from their wellness. Eden One brings it all back under one roof.”

The footprint of Eden One and Eden Elements totals 24,000 sq. ft, with membership capped at 1000. A typical club of this size would have 3,000-4,000 members. Charlie explains why Eden One decided to keep numbers low. “We want the club to retain the benefits of this space,” he says, “and we would like our members to always get the personal attention they need. We want to make sure the spa is perfectly catered for, and the studio classes stay full of energy and vitality.”

The reception area and members’ lounge open into a vibrant and welcoming space, with world-class restaurateur and cocktail bar manager. From here, the member journey splits – gym members scan in, and spa visitors head into private changing and relaxation rooms. Everything has been considered, down to the last detail of each element (from which the Eden Elements spa draws its name) – even the air in the changing rooms is 99.98% pure thanks to a specialised filter system.

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