UPDATE (2/20/14): It seems Samadhi Yoga was down, but not out. After we reported on the planned closure of the 15-year-old studio, owners tell CHS that new partners and possibly a new tea shop will keep the doors open for the foreseeable future. CHS will update once Samadhi owners finalize their plans. In the meantime, yoga on.
Here’s our original report:
On an eclectic E Pike block that has seen its fair share of change, Samadhi Yoga has been a mainstay. But after 15 years, the 12th and Pike yoga studio announced it will be shedding its unique brick-and-mortar incarnation. In a letter sent out in early November to members, Samadhi co-owner Steve Davis said the business had become unsustainable:
Demand for our offerings has decreased as the competition has increased along with lack of parking … We will be closing our doors in spring at the end of our lease because we are tired and undercompensated. We are happy to move into a new adventure. While we are sad to see the brick-and-mortar manifestation of Samadhi coming to an end, we are looking forward to being free from this burden to pursue other avenues of interest.
Davis, who runs Samadhi with his wife Kathleen Hunt, tells CHS the studio will be open until April 2014. According to Davis, the yoga studio had been on a year-to-year lease since it opened. Back then, yoga was just starting to make big waves and Samadhi was among the first facilities in the neighborhood.
“When we moved into the area 15 years ago, it was almost a ghetto. It was Cafe Paradiso, The Comet, and Ballet … and some strip joint,” he said. “(Now) it is so popular with restaurants and bars, which is good, but it’s a crowd that wants to drink and party.”
The spacious yoga studio at 1205 E Pike features towering 16-foot ceilings and classic finishes. In addition to the studio space, Samadhi also operates a yoga retail shop. Next door, retailer Wall of Sound recently moved in.
“It’s more space than a yoga business can afford to have anymore,” Davis said. “You really need to cut back and just have the space for the studios.”
Parking has also been an increasing problem for Samadhi’s 400 to 600 weekly class participants.
According to Davis, the building’s owner has put the property up for sale. The telephone number listed for the owner’s real estate business is currently disconnected. Davis said he and his wife would like to keep a studio on Capitol Hill, but they have no plans to do so right now. “It’s hard in someways, but there’s always something bittersweet about a business closing,” he said.