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Local Love Friday Feature with Oranj Fitness!

Nov 04, 2016

Where we shop, where we eat and where we have fun – are all an integral part of what makes our community feel like home. Local isn’t just a place on a map, it’s people: your neighbors and their families, their businesses, farms, non-profits, events, and recreational venues.

We want to support the people that make up our community as and such, every Friday we will feature one of our favorite local establishments! Our very FIRST spotlight is on Oranj Fitness! We were able to snag a quick interview with Tina Mandl and Keith Lanouette, the dynamic duo behind this busy, local hot spot that caters to fitness buffs and yogis alike!

1)      Where are you from and how long have you lived in Kelowna? 

T) I grew up in Smithers, B.C. We moved up North when I was 5 and we came back to the beautiful Okanagan when I was 15. I have been back here now for 13 years and am loving every minute of it.

K) I grew up in Crowsnest Pass, Alberta. I’ve been here in the Okanagan for 12 years.

2)      What does your business do? 

T) Oranj Fitness is a community focused group fitness studio that inspires an environment of health, personal greatness, fun and community. By providing cutting-edge exercise classes, we are setting the bar in high-end Bootcamp, Spin, Dance, Barre, Zumba and Yoga classes; we offer 110 classes a week with 23 very qualified instructors to choose from.

Oranj is an all-inclusive fitness facility, everything is included with your drop-in or membership; you will never have to rent sweat towels, mats or locks. We also provide you with professional grade shampoo, conditioner, styling products and tools; and if you are having a forgetful day we have you covered, you can borrow our gym strip or running shoes!

 Our facility is top of the line, including our vegan super food smoothie bar, local retail section, and brand new personal training space.

3)      How long have you been in operation?

T) Oranj has been in Downtown Kelowna for almost 9 years!! I have owned the studio for just over 2 years and Keith jumped in last February, we're coming up on his 1 year anniversary!

K) I have been leading group fitness classes and personal training since 2007. All the while my goal was to own my own business.

4)      Why did you get into/start your business?

T) I grew up as a dancer, and I knew I wanted to do something in that field. When I was younger I thought that would keep me teaching kids, but I learned quickly that I liked teaching adults more than children. I taught at Oranj for 6 years before I bought in as a franchisee. Best decision I have ever made by far!

K) I love to motivate people and I love to see people change and evolve on a weekly basis. There is nothing more rewarding than helping someone change themselves for the better. That - and I like to talk! It's a very social job and I've formed amazing friendship and close connections with our clients. AND I get to sweat and play with people all day!

5)      What’s YOUR favorite local store and restaurant in Kelowna?

T) This one is tough. I was talking about this yesterday, how I love what Kelowna, downtown specifically, has to offer. For shopping Blonde is definitely a favorite, not only is the owner a local girl boss, but the outfits you can create are beautiful. I eat out - a lot..... Depending on what you're looking for I love Fernando's for cheap, delicious eats, and I also enjoy Bouchons for an expertly prepared meal.

K) My favorite local store is The Brown Road Candle Company. My favorite restaurant is definitely Mamma Rosa’s, I’m a SUCKER for homemade pasta!

 6)      Why is it important to shop local?

T) It feels good to know exactly who you are supporting; you have a connection with the store or restaurant owner. When you buy from an independent, locally-owned business rather than a mysterious billionaire across the world, that investment is going right back into creating a more economically stable economy right here at home. Keeping Kelowna alive and thriving is super important to me, not only as a business owner, but as a community member who is here for the long haul. 

K) Once again it’s about forming those connections with people you see on a daily basis. You’re much more likely to get to know a small business owner in your neighborhood, and forming those relationships is what creates a sense of community.

7)      What is so special about the Okanagan/Kelowna?!

T) So many things! The most obvious answer is the weather, which is a no brainer, it's so beautiful all the time. To me, growing up in a small town, Kelowna is a city, it's the perfect balance between big city living, and small town community. I love knowing my neighbors, but also having something to do on the weekend. Kelowna has a plethora of events, shows, live bands and entertainment if you look for it. I'm never leaving, you can't make me :)

K) I love that we get all four seasons! Every day when I drive to work (over the Bennett Bridge), it literally takes my breath away! I came to visit once and never left!

 For More Information on Oranj Fitness go to http://www.oranjfitness.com/ or visit them at 529 Lawrence Ave, Downtown Kelowna.