Debenhams and Sweat! work out sites for future in-store gyms


Debenhams and revolutionary fitness chain, Sweat! are to open the first instore gym in their partnership on 10 September 2018 with a 17,575sq ft site in the Debenhams Sutton store.  The facility is to be followed by two further sites in key urban centres and are earmarked to open in 2019.

Manchester and Bristol are the next locations to offer customers the convenience of a work out at a central location, with the added benefit of a shopping and social meeting place all under one roof.

The initiative, which is part of the department store’s strategy to deliver ‘social shopping’ will see a friendly, group-oriented and performance driven gym experience offered in locations within Debenhams stores that are fitted with state of the art exercise and health monitoring equipment. The facilities will offer the latest Technogym apparatus, immersive cinematic exercise activity areas and digital health check points and are set to drive footfall from a predominately 18-33 year old female membership base.

On adding further locations to the partnership, Sergio Bucher, Debenhams CEO says, “I am looking forward to showcasing our latest strategic partnership to customers at our Sutton store followed by taking the concept to Manchester and Bristol.  Adding a highly innovative leisure facility to our stores is an integral part of the Debenhams Redesigned strategy to deliver ‘social shopping’ and I am keen to see customer reactions to the initiative.”

Frank Reed, CEO of Sweat! gyms, says: ”The Sutton gym will be the sixth in Sweat’s! chain and our first located within a shopping environment.  Through partnering with Debenhams we are able to offer members the convenience of having a work out, and shop as well as meet friends in a friendly and welcoming environment.  We are excited to take the initiative to key urban cities, Manchester and Bristol in 2019.”

Debenhams and Sweat’s! partnership will see shopping incentives offered to gym members which build the more that they visit the gym including automatic enrolment into the store’s Beauty Club and preloaded cards to redeem against purchases.

Debenhams’ link up with Sweat! follows partnerships with Blow LTD to provide beauty services as well as Maisons du Monde and Swoon! to retail homewares within Debenhams stores.