Happy Anniversary Bikram Yoga San Jose! What a week we had and what a party it was this past Saturday. Thanks members for all the crazy delicious homemade food (who made that great bean/beef casserole?), and to Il Fornaio (Claudio, you are the best) for spoiling us with Italian dishes and that addicting house-made bread. And thanks to Chris and the crew the studio was polished up and ready to go for the 8:00 am class on Sunday. We yogis can pull anything off if we put our minds to it.

For those of you who read the January Newsletter intro last month, you might be interested in knowing that the Angel Card I picked for 2011 was “Celebration!” If you didn’t read the last newsletter, I have been selecting an Angel Card (each card has a single word to focus on) each year for the last 10-12 years and each word has been fitting and filled with lessons. Last year, I picked “Patience” and wrote about that powerful word. This year I picked “Celebration,” just before our Anniversary and the announcement to officially start with our plans to expand to our new space! What a word and what a year it will be! (It was also great to see how many of you also picked an Angel Card this year.) Saturday night was truly a celebration, but it wasn’t just because we’ve had eight wonderful years together.

We are expanding! We got the news late Friday that all but a few details are complete and a go ahead from a great landlord to start building our dream studio! It’s been two long years of study and negotiation. I can’t tell you how much I’ve appreciated YOUR patience and your trust in me that this process was necessary to create the best scenario for all of us. Of course as you look back on things you realize it was the way it was always supposed to be – another great reminder that we do what we can with the abilities we have and let go of the rest. Yoga is such a great teacher for that. In fact, doing the yoga alongside this process created in me a new threshold of awareness, patience, tolerance and detachment that I would not have had otherwise. Yoga helped me be clear, helped me along the way in addressing an obstacle or selecting the appropriate next step in this complex project.

The Anniversary party really illustrated the diversity in our community, our devotion to our practice of yoga and the support we give to each other in that journey towards self. I am always so amazed at the initiative each of you take to get to know a new member. The party was always jumping and there were a lot of laughs. In case, you haven’t been to one of the parties, we also have entertainment, yoga demonstrations, and acknowledgements of gratitude to a host of people, including and especially you members. We added a little more this year by bringing in our team of experts who will be responsible for building our new studio.

There are many reasons why this process took awhile to complete. For one, I was pretty set (and somewhat “English Bulldog” determined) to stay where we are. We are all creatures of habit and have our routines set in how we get here to where we park. I didn’t want that to change. Plus, we’ve put a lot of healing work into this soil! I wanted to keep that energy growing right here! It’s not my nature to do something in a mediocre way. If we were going to do something, it had to be big and it had to be right. We have a home here and it’s not my intention to take the “home” out of the studio.

On Saturday night, many of you got to meet our team of experts who will be responsible for creating this vision. I couldn’t be happier with this group. You know it’s right when ideas you’ve accumulated throughout two long years written on napkins, pieces of scratch paper, or collections of brochures can be interpreted into a crystallizing a vision. That’s what Jeff did. It was many hours of combing through files to transform thoughts to a real illustration. It was spot on! It was a treat to finally bring the “them” and “you” together Saturday night.

So, who are they? Jeff Eaton is our architect from JE Architects with his talented assistant, Kathy Aberin. Sean Toomey is our commercial real estate broker from Colliers Parrish and Dave Method is our building contractor from Method Construction. We also have Linda Lenore, our Feng Shui master, in the mix, just as she was eight years ago. Here is what you can expect:

  • 7000 sq ft (close to three times the size we are in now)
  • Two yoga rooms. The largest room at 2 ½ times the size we have right now.
  • State of the art heat/humidity/air system with tight controls, quiet and proper air filtration
  • Flotex floor covering in both yoga rooms developed for the healthcare industry; anti-microbial resistance; waterproof; resistant to allergenic bacterial growth
  • Bigger bathrooms and spacious changing areas with five showers for women; three showers for men
  • Beautiful lobby with several areas throughout to mediate, read, or converse with friends
  • Public Wi-Fi
  • And more!

Not only is everything going to be brand new, the building process will be totally seamless! While you will be encouraged to take hard hat tours, give input, be a part of a committee, your practice will not be interrupted. The new studio is right next door. BYSJ is moving into the three suites adjacent to us now. So we will conveniently shut the lights out on our current space and simply walk over to our new studio with everything ready to go! There will be more to share in the upcoming months. We will be adding a new section to our website and monthly newsletter. In addition, we will be posting updates throughout the lobby area and using Facebook to communicate with you as well. (If you are not a fan on Facebook, go to the homepage of our website and click on the Facebook graphic.)

In the last two years we’ve had an attendance of over 70,000 each year. We’ve done our best to accommodate all of you by adding more classes. We have over 20,000 names in our database. It’s my intention to give back to all of you who keep coming, and to build upon our great community. If we haven’t seen you in awhile, it’s time to come back. If you’ve never tried it before, now is the perfect time. We will also have several promotional specials throughout the coming months, so stay tuned. We are hosting one right now as it ties into our Anniversary. Our plans during this week go on sale for 10% off. However, through Sunday, February 7th, our most popular plan, the Friends and Family plan, drops to 50% off if you buy two years. If you purchase the Friends and Family at full price ($1075), then your second year is half off ($537.50). That means your first year in the new studio is already paid for at a great value. Feel free to talk to BYSJ Manager, Chris, for more information at chris@bikramyogasanjose.com.

This has been a remarkable place to grow. It’s a remarkable place to come to everyday. It was a risk I took eight years ago with the support of family and friends to open BYSJ. It’s so different now. Let’s evolve to a new level but together this time, and “soar like a 747”. Oh yes, let’s celebrate!