The Related Companies, L.P. Acquires Equinox Holdings Inc. Pre-Eminent New York Based Real Estate Development Firm

Plans to Expand Lifestyle Brand With Fitness



    NEW YORK, Dec. 5 /PRNewswire/ -- The Related Companies, L.P. (Related),
 one of the nation's most prestigious real estate development firms, today
 announced the acquisition of Equinox Holdings Inc., in partnership with
 Equinox Company Management. Equinox is the leading operator of upscale fitness
 clubs in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco and South Florida.
 Valued at $505 million, the sale is expected to close in January 2006.
     (Photo:  http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20051205/NYM180 )
     The Related Companies, L.P., founded in 1972 by Chairman and CEO Stephen
 M. Ross, is headquartered in New York City and oversees a real estate
 portfolio valued in excess of $15 billion. A fully integrated privately owned
 firm with divisions in development, acquisitions, financial services, property
 management, marketing and sales, Related is synonymous with architectural and
 service excellence, and has significant developments, partners and affiliates
 in Miami, Chicago, Boston, Los Angeles and San Francisco. Related's historic
 development of the 2.8 million square foot Time Warner Center has transformed
 Columbus Circle into one of New York City's premiere destinations and has
 significantly increased the value of commercial and residential property in
 the surrounding neighborhoods.
     Related and Equinox have historically shared similar visions. Both
 companies are known for their commitment to lifestyle, service, innovation and
 design, and have a passionate following amongst dedicated upscale consumers.
 The companies' respective customers have similar demographic and psychographic
 profiles and both foster fiercely loyal clientele who are passionate about
 their brands.
     Related has redefined the residential marketplace, created the benchmark
 for sophisticated urban living and has been committed to quality fitness
 facilities in its buildings since the mid-eighties. Since its inception 15
 years ago, Equinox has been widely recognized for being an industry innovator
 and for delivering an unparalleled fitness experience.
     Both companies will enjoy a number of key strategic opportunities from the
 partnership.  Related will secure a well known brand as a quality anchor
 tenant for key current and future developments.  This will also help Related
 to enhance the quality of its amenities and facilities available to residents.
 Equinox will leverage Related's real estate expertise and relationships to
 more efficiently secure sites, reducing its site identification and club
 development costs.  Finally, both firms will benefit from current national
 growth plans already underway in key urban centers.
     "Related is proud to be acquiring Equinox, a market leader with a broad
 portfolio of products, a strong customer-focused culture, a long history of
 profitability, clearly identified growth opportunities, and an extraordinary
 management team," stated Ross. In May 2005, Ross was appointed to the Equinox
 Board of Directors and at Time Warner Center, Related serves as landlord to
 the flagship 40,000 square foot club and its innovative "E", a 6,000 square
 foot elite training facility; the brand's sole invitation only private gym.
     Harvey Spevak will continue to lead Equinox as CEO and President and the
 current Equinox management team will remain intact. Since 2000, Equinox has
 opened 21 new clubs in four new markets and more than doubled its membership.
 Revenues have grown from $63 million in 2000 to $168 million for the 12-month
 period ended September of 2005.  The company offers an integrated selection of
 "Equinox-branded" programs, services and products, including strength and
 cardio training, group fitness classes, personal training, spa services and
 products, apparel and food/juice bars. In addition, Related and Equinox
 already have a luxury condominium project in the works together on the Upper
 West Side of Manhattan, where Equinox will operate a new 35,000 square foot
 club.
     "We are looking forward to expanding upon the Equinox vision and growth
 strategy. We see natural synergies as a result of our partnership and are
 looking forward to creating new products to benefit our customers," stated
 Jeff T. Blau, President of The Related Companies, L.P.
     "We're very excited about the future of Equinox with Related as our
 partner," said Harvey Spevak. "Given their expertise in the development and
 management of real estate holdings, and focus on lifestyle, Related will
 provide strategic value and facilitate the continued growth of the company."
     In December of 2000, North Castle Partners (NCP) and J.W. Childs
 Associates partnered with Harvey Spevak and company management to acquire
 Equinox Holdings Inc. At that time, the company was a New York centric
 business. Since its purchase five years ago, Equinox has grown rapidly to
 become a nationally recognized lifestyle brand.
     In this transaction, the buyer, Related, was represented by Merrill Lynch
 and Paul Hastings.
 
     For more information about Equinox Fitness, Please visit
 www.equinoxfitness.com .
 
     For more about The Related Companies, L.P., Please visit www.related.com .
 
 

SOURCE The Related Companies, L.P.

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