It is with great sadness that we, Maria and Jez, owners of Bikram Yoga Katong (BYK), deliver this announcement: BYK will cease operations on September 14, 2016.
We understand that this may come as a shock, and ask that you bear with us as we wish to give you a full explanation for why this is so, and what is going to happen with your ongoing packages. We will be doing our best to honour your packages, and will be working with each of our active students on a case-by-case basis in order to compensate you.
We wish to explain why this is happening. Our honest answer is that our lease is up on Sept 14. We are not in a position to continue with our current landlord: Why? Because our rent is astronomical. We pay $20,000 a month and this has not been sustainable over the past year.
We have tried our best to negotiate to drop the rent. While the landlord was finally willing to do so, it was under terms that were unacceptable to us.
Thus, it is with a heavy heart that we have to tell you that we must close BYK. We have topped up the rent from our own savings for the past few months, and cannot continue to do so. We have looked at alternative locations to move into, but moving fees, too, would leave us completely financially strapped in the near term.
Over the past month, you will have noticed that we have stopped selling large packages.
We were in negotiations with the landlord at the time. We realised that we were facing a situation where we perhaps would not continue business at this location. We were therefore trying to be careful to limit sales of big packages, in case we could not fulfil them.
We built this studio, the first Bikram studio in the East, in 2013 with dedication and love.
Your support has been invaluable to us, and we cannot say enough that this community is a strong one. We knew it before we opened, and we know it now with even more certainty and clarity after three years of teaching you, loving you with fierceness and committing to you not just as students, but as people.
We want you to know that your listening is unparalleled. Your practice is strong. Your lives are better not because of us, but because of YOU. All we did was give you a home for your yoga. We are so proud to have been that home for three years. We are so honoured that you chose us.
SO, WHAT WILL HAPPEN NOW?
For those with active packages, please try to complete as many classes as you can between now and September 14. Those on Class Card packages will be allowed to share classes with anyone they choose. We encourage you to use this time to spread the yoga to everyone you love.
AFTER SEPTEMBER 14:
We are committed to still honouring your packages. We will work with you individually on a reimbursement scheme. Your remaining packages will be pro-rated. YOU WILL RECEIVE COMPENSATION FROM BYK.
As owners of Bikram Yoga Katong, we will not walk away without honouring you as a client and a student. We as studio owners hold ourselves accountable for what is right and fair.
Please know that we are working on a reimbursement scheme that is fair for both parties.
However, it may take us some time to pay you back. Our financial commitments also include paying out of pocket to break down the studio, to return it to its original state.
We will email and call you individually to let you know about compensation.
WHAT ABOUT OUR TEACHERS?
Maria will continue to teach private classes. She has been making a name for herself teaching celebrities as well as beginner students. Jez, as a new mother, will concentrate on being a dedicated mum to her two beautiful girls. She will also be teaching corporate clients.
Watch out for Jill as she continues her journey as a teacher. It will not stop here. She is also a freelance journalist and editor.
Teresa has been winning awards at her banking job, and will concentrate on her full-time work. Adeline, who has full-time work as well, is also a newlywed, and will finally get time to enjoy a proper honeymoon period. Happy, smiling Julie will concentrate on her family, as she is a mother to two very active young boys.
IN THE MEANTIME…
Please have patience with us. We encourage you to come in to do your yoga until September 14.
Come say goodbye. Maria will teach the last class on September 14 at 8pm. All teachers – Jez, Jill, Teresa, Adeline and Julie – will be teaching classes at various times until September 14.
We want to see you. We want to teach you. We want to know that you will continue with your yoga long after BYK no longer exists.
Signing off with all our love,
Maria & Jez
Directors at Bikram Yoga Katong