At L’Usine Club, Design and Customer Service Go Hand-in-Hand
The European club chain's sleek facilities, designed by a team of architects, have attracted the likes of Kim Kardashian and Kanye West.
L’Usine Club isn’t your average health club chain.
The company, which has two facilities in Paris, one in Brussels, and one in Geneva, prides itself on providing exceptional and meticulous customer service. Its highly trained staff (outfitted by Armani), premium sound system (installed by Devialet), and sleek facilities (designed by a team of architects) have attracted several global celebrities to stop in for a workout.
“L’Usine Sports Club is a high-end premium club; the place, the architecture and the decoration, the equipment, the name, the staff competencies, and its educational approach is what makes the club a cut above the rest,” says L’Usine Club Founder Patrick Joly. “Our customers are active business men and women, mostly above 35 years old, and we pride ourselves on having had guests such as the likes of Clint Eastwood, Lenny Kravitz, Kim Kardashian, Kanye West, Hillary Swank, and Scarlett Johansson.”
Crafting Outstanding Club Design
Joly and co-owner Patrick Rizzo are preparing to open a third Paris club—a process that involves a team of architects, designers, and light engineers.
“In each of our clubs, you will find our DNA,” Joly says, “the quest for quality, high-end architectural design associated with daily operational functionality. To make a long story short: it is a club where we like to train.”
“It starts with a very rigorous recruitment strategy, providing on-going behavioural training for all our staff, and a very active and close onsite management of our customers identical to what is provided in the luxury business.”
Patrick Joly, co-owner
L’Usine Club, Paris, France
Providing Exceptional Customer Service
While most club owners set out to create a business where they would like to train, many tend to fall short of implementing that vision—especially when it comes to customer service. Joly says club operators often run in to two main obstacles:
“First, the number of members with respect to the size of the club. Too many members can lead to a longer waiting time, overcrowding, and dissatisfaction.”
“The second thing is the staff qualification and training and its approach. This can be related to their competencies in sports, sales, management, and technical knowledge.”
L’Usine has several processes in place to overcome these challenges.
“It starts with a very rigorous recruitment strategy, providing on-going behavioural training for all our staff, and a very active and close onsite management of our customers identical to what is provided in the luxury business,” he says.
Patrick Joly solves the problem of overcrowding by setting a fix number of members of each club, depending on the size of the facility, the number of machines, and the size of the group exercise rooms.
What Lies Ahead
The L’Usine team is following these strategies as they continue developing their network of Parisian clubs.
“L’Usine is a unique location and we want to ensure that our customers feel that they enter a luxury boutique club in each of our new locations,” Joly says. “In the near future, our network will grow in Paris, many European capitals, and, hopefully, even beyond.”
The next club, L’Usine Saint Lazare, will open in Paris in 2018.
Marianne Aiello is the Senior Digital Content Manager for IHRSA. While her average day includes writing articles, monitoring social media, and crafting IHRSA’s digital strategy, the best part of her job is covering IHRSA events across the globe. When she’s not at work, you’ll find Marianne at an indoor cycling class or, more likely, binging on Netflix.