High-spirited British billionaire businessman Sir Richard Branson visited Soweto to celebrate the success of one of his gyms at Jabulani‚ and shared enthusiastic praise for the neighbourhood.

Within its first three months‚ the Virgin Active RED Jabulani gym “has gained a record-breaking number of members in three months‚ exceeding membership expectations by 100%”‚ making it the most successful club launch to date for Virgin Active South Africa‚ the company said in a statement.

Branson‚ who last visited Soweto four years ago‚ said he was “thrilled to be back and to experience the infectious atmosphere and energy of the club‚ the staff and the members”.

“The gym hits right at the heart of what fitness should be all about – having a great deal of fun while you’re getting fit.”

Jabulani is one of seven RED gyms opened by Virgin Active across the country in the last 18 months. The concept is ‘gym made easy’ in an upbeat environment which includes a substantial Grid area for high intensity training‚ live DJ sessions and a Box studio. The cost ranges from R179 – R249 per month.

Virgin Active SA plans to roll out more RED gyms across South Africa‚ “with an opening pipeline in the medium term in the order of 10 to 15 clubs per year”.

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