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Gold's Gym partners buy shopping center

February 05, 1999|By BRENDAN KIRBY

A real estate partnership that includes the owners of Gold's Gym in Hagerstown last month bought the shopping center where the workout center sits.

Co-owners Kirk and John Galiani and real estate developer Steve Parnell, formed CV Hagerstown LLC, which paid $1.2 million for the 8.89-acre property at Pennsylvania Avenue and Longmeadow Road.

Gold's opened almost a year and a half ago in the building formerly occupied by Rando's Fitness Center.

"They're doing very well down there as a gym and a social place," said Parnell, who owns the Reston, Va.-based Capital Ventures LC and develops shopping centers and office complexes.

CV Hagerstown bought the company on Jan. 7 from MGI Properties in New York.

Parnell said the partners bought the property to support the long-term growth of Gold's. Giant Food, which had a supermarket in the building until it outgrew the space, leased the property from MGI Properties.

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The supermarket chain, which subleases the space to Gold's, will control the lease until it expires in 2004.

Parnell said the Galiani brothers feared a new firm might raise rent once Giant lost the lease.

The dark scenario was to spend years building Gold's into a first-rate business but then have no option to extend the lease, Parnell said.

Once the company gets control of the lease, Parnell said he plans to rehabilitate the property and turn it into an active shopping center. He suggested a bank might be interested in opening a branch there.

Ideally, he said the group would like to attract a chiropractor, sports medicine outfit or other businesses that would complement Gold's.

"If anyone's got any ideas, we're open to it," he said.

Parnell said he would also like to do something with a roughly 2-acre field next to the gym. He suggested that youth soccer fields might be a good investment.

"We'd love to throw some money into that," he said.

The more activity on the property, particularly sporting events, the more the gym benefits, he said.

"We'd like to be as community-oriented as possible," he said.

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