Volonté is a unique wellness concept with an intimate fitness space and nutritionist-approved cafe that places a big emphasis on balance.
The idea was dreamt up by co-founders Vidushi Binani and Haylene Ryan while in lockdown. They wanted to create a space where people could come and nourish their bodies through fitness and nutrition.
“We wanted a very warm, welcoming space where you could come in and have brunch with your friends, you could also come in and work – just a very inclusive space,” Binani says.
Ryan, who has been a strength trainer for 20 years, is the head trainer at Volonté and created the ultimate 360 fitness experience with elements of strength, cardio and recovery.
The idea is to guide individuals to optimal health through restorative workouts that utilise functional equipment.
“We wanted to be able to give people a taste of everything. E ven if you’re not particularly a fan of strength, the class does it in moderation, so you will get the amount you need without starting to hate it,” Binani says.
The modular and functional Energy Studio is decorated with state-of-the-art equipment such as rowing machines, bikes and kettlebells. None of the equipment requires electricity, only energy from the people in the class, with the idea being that nothing will move unless you do.
It’s an intimate space where you get one-on-one time with the trainer to guide you through the movements. Some of the exercises include lateral squats, stiff leg deadlifts and weighted squats, to slower movements designed to condition the body and mind. While it is an intense workout, you will leave feeling refreshed rather than on shaky legs after an hour of overexertion.
The cafe and fitness studio are intrinsically linked, with a focus on fueling your body with nutritionally balanced meals that support a full-body workout.
Binani, a former graduate from Le Cordon Bleu, leads the cafe with her deep knowledge, love and understanding of nutrition and food groups.
The menu ranges from protein-packed smoothies to a whipped egg omelette, balance bowls and baked goods made fresh in-store every day.
“We try to be as local as possible – we don’t have too many fancy ingredients from all over the world, we make pretty much everything ourselves.
We don’t normally keep too many things that we have because as you keep food for long, it loses nutritional value so it’s best to eat it when it’s fresh,” Binani says.
The word ‘Volonté’ also has a special meaning for the co-owners who met 13 years ago when Ryan was training Binani.
“The name [Volonté] means willpower – it means the will to make your own choice so everyone has willpower within them, it’s just about exercising it, it’s about activating it,” says Binani.
On a mission to make smart choices easy, the pair combine their distinct experiences, personal ethnicities and vibrant cultures to create the future-thinking wellbeing designation.
Classes start from £25 with no membership required, with the option to increase to a monthly membership and other special packages available. For more information and for bookings, head to the Volonté website.