Wellington’s award-winning yoga studio closed due to “government restrictions”


Awhi Yoga & Wellbeing co-owners, Justine Hamill and Jase Te Patu, in their studio in Johnston St in 2020 (file photo).

ROSA WOOD

Awhi Yoga & Wellbeing co-owners Justine Hamill and Jase Te Patu at their Johnston St studio in 2020 (file photo).

Wellington yoga and wellness studio closes, citing declining client numbers and the ‘current climate’.

Awhi Yoga and Wellbeing studio will close on December 15 after owners Justine Hamill and Jase Te Patu chose not to renew the lease for their premises in Johnston St.

The announcement on the studio’s Facebook page on Wednesday said that under “current government restrictions” and with the end of the lease, the decision had been made to shut down.

Hamill confirmed that she and some of her staff and teachers were still not vaccinated.

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She said the studio would remain open for a period after the mandatory vaccinations for workers took effect on Dec. 3 to “give our people some time to get their bearings.”

“We have a mix of staff and teachers who are vaccinated and others who are not. Once the mandates have been received in these [who] maybe there will be there, ”Hamill said.

Justine Hamill says the studio has a mix of vaccinated staff and some not.  (File photo)

PROVIDED

Justine Hamill says the studio has a mix of vaccinated staff and some not. (File photo)

Since the pandemic, Hamill said the studio has seen an almost 25% drop in the number of people attending classes. The size of the premises on Johnston Street meant that the lease renewal in December was “just not sustainable.”

Hamill said Te Patu received the blow, but despite the couple’s differing opinions on the vaccine, they were united in their decision.

“We are best friends and we love and honor each other, and honor each other’s decisions. We have already discussed it [the mandate] Entered into force. It was very difficult to make this decision, ”she said.

Awhi Yoga and Wellbeing co-owner Jase Te Patu has worked with contemporary students from the All Blacks, Hurricanes, Pulse and the NZ School of Dance (file photo).

ROBERT CUISINE / STUFF

Awhi Yoga and Wellbeing co-owner Jase Te Patu has worked with contemporary students from the All Blacks, Hurricanes, Pulse and the NZ School of Dance (file photo).

Customers took to the studio’s Facebook page to express their sadness and gratitude following the news of the closure.

Hamill has been a yoga teacher since 2010. In 2020, she received the Exercise Industry NZ Mind Body Instructor of the Year award.

Te Patu is an award-winning animator who has worked with contemporary students from the All Blacks, Hurricanes, Pulse and the NZ School of Dance.

Awhi Yoga and Wellbeing won the Exercise Industry NZ Studio of the Year award in 2017.

Hamill said she still hopes to hold retreats on a small scale and looks for what she can offer on an “one-on-one basis.”


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