With Gwyneth Paltrow’s London transplant The Arts Club on Sunset finally getting approval, the h Club about to open in Hollywood in early 2019, and Soho House expanding even further into the Arts District, we spoke with the Los Angeles Athletic Clubs Marketing & Events Manager, Simone McAlonen, about their original private club concept in LA and it’s new member’s co-working space for women only called the WAVE.
WHL: As the first private club in LA, how have you seen this space change over the years?
LAAC: This is such a huge question! The Club has been a landmark institution in LA since 1880 so I will just focus in on the 6 years that I have worked for the company. The Club’s development has run parallel to the revitalization of downtown, so it has grown tremendously and gotten a lot of updates, both physically with remodels and with the energy that new members have brought. Overall, I think The Club has evolved to become a really exciting hub for people who are smart, creative and ambitiously pushing their respective industries to new heights. Our history and culture attract members that are doing innovative and exciting things and with the way our programming and our physical space has been evolving we are creating a new exciting culture here in DTLA.
Tell us what you are now offering your female members and why did you feel now was the right time for this type of exclusive club?
We are the only private club in the industry that offers a private co-working space for our female members, which is really exciting. And when an LAAC member joins WAVE they get so much more than just a co-working space, they get a really supportive community of women who are doing innovative, interesting work, but still have a lot of drive to continue growing their careers. It’s a small community and all of our programming is specifically tailored to help the individuals in the group meet their specific career goals, so it’s really the place to be if you want to take your career to the next level and meet other people doing exciting things.
How is this unique for the LA audience? And, how do you differ from this new wave of private clubs that are opening and expanding now in LA?
I love that private clubs are becoming so popular because I believe having that third space between home and work is a really healthy way to develop a community and culture. WAVE is so unique because it’s designed with a really specific audience in mind: women-identifying entrepreneurs who are interested in professional and personal growth. WAVE also stands out because it has the rich history of LAAC behind it, but also represents an exciting new chapter promoting outstanding diversity and inclusion. Also, by virtue of WAVE a club within a club, it allows WAVE members to have access to our entire membership, regardless of gender, and our athletic/social facilities of course.
What are you planning for future member engagement in 2019?
We are accepting new applicants for WAVE in January of 2019 so our group is going to grow. We will be doing a group retreat and organizing a few really exciting events that are more outward facing and will be engaging with the LA community at large. I have some bigger events planned that are going to spotlight women who are exceling in positions of power that are traditionally held by men. We will also be continuing our regular monthly programming exploring subjects like personal care, fashion, personal presentation and marketing.