Students left fuming after Victoria hot yoga studio closes doors suddenly
CTV Vancouver Island
Published Tuesday, December 5, 2017 7:02PM PST
Some hot yoga students are feeling left out in the cold and wondering where their money is after a downtown Victoria studio closed its doors unexpectedly.
As students and instructors of Hudson Yoga arrived for class on Nov. 23, they were greeted with a notice taped on the front door informing them the studio's lease agreement had been terminated due to unpaid rent.
"They said that the locks had been changed on the door and that they were locked out, and there wouldn't be any yoga until further notice," said Shane Pask, a Hudson Yoga customer who has been attending for the past five years. "You're investing almost $1,000 a person for a year membership and that is at risk of being lost."
The studio posted its own notice on its website, saying classes had been cancelled until further notice. A post on its now-defunct Facebook page offered more details on why it was forced to close the doors, blaming it on challenges with the facility's landlord, Townline.
"Our biggest challenge is the landlord, Townline, who takes unreasonable action without warning and is currently making it very difficult for anyone else to take an actionable step," the post read. "We had been planning a rebranding and studio upgrades, however, we have also recently learned within the last 24 hours that the rent is going up significantly in 2018 without exception."
When contacted by CTV News, Townline said that it was not raising rent, and that it terminated the lease because of an unspecified amount of unpaid rent.
The owner of Hudson Yoga isn't commenting, and members say they haven't heard from management either.
"There can't be enough of us to not warrant at least some type of communication. That would be a great start," said Pask.
Ken Mayes, the founder of Hudson Yoga who sold the business in 2015, said he's already contacted Townline and isn't ruling out opening a new yoga studio in the space.
"I have a sense that both Townline and the community understand the situation and are really cooperative, and really hope that something positive comes out of this," said Mayes.
Some members have reached out to their credit card companies in attempts to get at least a partial refund, while the Better Business Bureau confirms it's aware and looking into the situation.
"My staff are actually looking into a complaint that we received about the studio, and of course the complaint is that somebody has paid for classes and now they're going 'Oh no, the doors are closed,'" said Rosalind Scott, President and CEO of BBB Vancouver Island.
Pask said he just wants to see the studio do the right thing.
"What's right is getting the clients, meeting their expectations as to what they paid for. That's the right thing to do," he said.
A number of Hudson Yoga customers formed a Facebook group in the face of the closure and held a meeting this week to discuss their next steps.
With a report from CTV Vancouver Island's Amber Schinkel