Florida Keys Business
Sunday, September 1, 2013
Fitness center has new owners, equipment

KEY LARGO -- The island will be getting another pair of active snowbirds: Rob and Maura Ghirardi.

The Rhode Island couple recently purchased Tavernier's Froggy's Fitness.

"When it opened up, I jumped on it," Rob Ghirardi said. "It had to be now."

The duo passed on buying Froggy's Fitness when it was on the market three years ago because they wanted to devote time to their teenage daughter, who was just entering high school. Now that she is a senior, they said it was time to act.

"We want to make this our winter home," Maura Ghirardi said. "We're tired of the snow."

Back in Rhode Island, the couple own a fitness center and are bringing their years of experience to Froggy's. Before getting into the fitness business, Rob Ghirardi made and sold ice cream.

"I used to get people fat, and now I'm getting them fit," he said jokingly.

After taking over Froggy's recently, the Ghirardis shut down for a week and sold much of the existing equipment, retiled the floor and brought in new exercise machines. The same staff remains in place.

One thing that impressed Rob was the 800-square foot yoga room, which is designed with mirrors and hardwood flooring. "Look at this," he said. "This is amazing."

The property, which includes the 6,500-square-foot fitness center, was purchased for $1.36 million by the previous owner, according to county records. The recent purchase price was not available.

Membership rates for the remodeled facility have not changed much. Monthly rates vary between $50 and $60.

"We may make an adjustment here or there, but they are basically the same," Rob Ghirardi said.

Memberships are also sold in three-, six- and 12-month increments.

Memberships provide access to a variety of fitness classes, such as spinning, yoga and pilates.

For more information, visit www.froggysfitness.com or call 852-8623.

jgore@keysnews.com

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