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Equinox Gym to Open in March at Villa Marina Marketplace

The upscale fitness club will have its grand opening later this month and a dine-in theater is slated to open in October at the Villa Marina Marketplace.

The new Equinox Fitness Club will have its grand opening later this month at the Villa Marina Marketplace in Del Rey, officials said Thursday.

The grand opening will take place March 27 at 4 p.m. and charter memberships are still available, said Brian Decato, the club's general manager in an email. Equinox in May 2011 signed a lease for a 30,000-square-foot space in the sprawling entertainment and retail center at Lincoln Boulevard and Maxella Avenue that is undergoing a $25 million redevelopment.

New York-based Equinox will offer a retail store, cafe, children's club, a lounge with wireless Internet access and a spa.

Equinox is one of the major anchor tenants for the redevelopment along with a 34,318-square-foot AMC Dine-In Theatre that will combine restaurant food and cocktails with movie auditoriums that feature reserved seating and seat-side service. AMC Entertainment in August signed a lease for the dine-in theater and the 625-seat theater is scheduled to open in October.

The remodeled center's design will combine a sense of the beach with upscale stores and restaurants, including Gelson's, Sports Chalet and Barnes & Noble.

Mark English on behalf of property owner RREEF told the Del Rey Neighborhood Council in February that construction started in mid-November and the renovation project should be complete by October.

The center was built in 1986 and needs help with its layout to help struggling retailers, English said. The property owner has spent $14 million on the renovation of the exterior, he said.

Escalators will be relocated to improve traffic to the center's upper level and more shade is being added to entice people to stay and shop at the center. The parking garage also will be cleaned and painted and a valet service will be added, English said.

Part of the renovation's objective is to add more restaurants to the area, he said.

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