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Friday, September 19, 2014

Judge upholds eviction of Pro Maxx Fitness from shopping center

Fairfax County Courthouse


The judge hearing the Pro Maxx Fitness eviction case in Fairfax County General District Court Sept. 19 upheld the eviction and ordered the gym’s owners to pay $35,000 in back rent to Carol Zach Reuss, the property manager of Annandale Shopping Center. The gym must vacate by Sept. 30.

Reuss later told the Annandale Blog the gym owes more than $200,000.

The owners of Pro Maxx, Ahmed Ragheb and Susan Hilaski, can appeal the ruling, said the gym’s attorney, Martin J.A. Yeager but there hasn’t been a decision on whether they will. Gym employees and members had undertaken a petition drive and other efforts in support of Pro Maxx Fitness, but in the end none of that made a difference.

During the trail, Reuss’ attorney Thomas McIntosh, claimed that Pro Maxx also owed thousands of dollars in unpaid real estate taxes and common area maintenance fees. Yeager argued that the shopping center, not the tenants, are responsible for those charges. The judge said those charges aren’t relevant to the case.

McIntosh put Greg McGillicuddy, a local real estate broker with Trust Properties on the witness stand to talk about whether the rent charged to Pro Maxx is a reasonable amount based on comparable rents in the area. The judge ruled that isn’t relevant, saying the bottom line is whether the gym owners paid the amount in their contract.

19 comments:

  1. You mean they were evicted because they didn't pay their rent? I thought they said the big bad landlord wouldn't renew their lease? Maybe he wouldn't renew their lease because they hadn't honored the terms of their existing lease. Funny how that works

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    1. Funny how people only hear what they want to hear. The landlord testified in open court that she "believed there there was an executed lease" and only discovered there was not one when "ProMaxx asked for a copy of it" later. So was there a lease, or wasn't there? How convenient for a lease to vanish after the place was renovated and client base was built. Before you keep ranting about what "probably happened", maybe you should probably go by and have a look at the "lease amendment" that practically demanded the owners' first born children in order to continue to do business.

      It's better to just not comment on things you don't understand, Anonomous. I would think twice about renting in Annandale Shopping Center if leases vanish and crazy amendments mysteriously turn up instead. Or maybe that's why businesses don't make it in Annandale.

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  2. What does this now mean for all those who paid $$ in membership fees?

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    1. We just called and they said they are paying refunds AFTER they close. I asked if their phone would still work and they said no, but the owners will contact you.......

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  3. To 4:02 ask for a refund, if they don't comply. Read your terms and conditions of your signed contract. Take them to small claims court.

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  4. I would file very quickly if they don't do a refund because them could either move away or file for bankruptcy. If you paid via a credit card, I would call and ask them to do a chargeback for the unused portion.

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  5. Im sure all those who paid their dues in full won't see their money back ...just saying .... if they can't pay their rent or other taxes or fees than what makes you think they will give your money back ???


    Hopefully the new gym owners if the gym stays will honor the old memberships .

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  6. Another disaster in Mason District. Until the District becomes relevant and start to attract millenniums out of Arlington with good transportation, bike lanes, pedestrian life, good schools and a vision of dynamic living/working environment, Annandale and Baileys will remain junk land USA!

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    1. Hi. Millennial checking in here. I came for the property value bang for the buck first. I had all you mentioned in Arlington, the one thing I didn't have was square footage, which is pretty much the main reason millennials will give up on Arlo.

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  7. Here's a way to participate in Seven Corners/Bailey's Crossroads revitalization: Oct. 8 - Business Breakfast hosted by the Bailey's Crossroads/Seven Corners Revitalization Corporation, featuring Seven Corners Task Force co-chair John Thillman and Barbara Byron, director of the Fairfax County Office of Community Revitalization, Public House #7, 7:30-9 a.m. RSVP: Nancy Vorona, nvorona@hotmail.com.

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    1. at 7:30 AM, right! some of us work to afford to live here. why not 7:30 PM?

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  8. Letter from the owner after requesting a refund: "We are aware of your paid in full memberships. According to our attorney, there is a special process that we must follow and your contact information as well as amounts owed will be turned over to our attorney as well as a representative of the court. All of our paid-in-full members will go through the same process.

    We have to comply with Virginia consumer protection laws and follow the instructions provided by our legal counsel. Refunds will be made after we close and through an independent appointee. This is my understanding so far.

    I'm hoping to touch base with our attorney tomorrow and if I speak with him, I'll be sure to provide you with more information on this matter.

    Thank you,
    Susan
    Owner
    Pro MAXX Fitness"

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    1. Sure Susan! You will repay your members just like you paid the hundreds of thousands of dollars you owed the Landlord! I thought you weren't going down without a fight. I heard you didn't even show up for court. Some fighter you are. Is that because you would have had to tell the truth under oath! I don't think you or your partner know what the truth is anymore. Try telling the truth to you faithful members who carried your carefully crafted BS story to the press and the community about what a great business you were, when in fact you are just rip off artists and scammers. You at least owe them that after they have embarrassed themselves repeating the slop that comes out of your mouth about how you have paid your rent. Those are lies and they have been proven to be lies. Give your members a break and tell them the truth. They are not getting any money back! What will happen is you and your attorney will drag them through a long drawn out process telling them its a process and they will get paid, at the end of the day there will be NOTHING. LOSER!!!

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    2. Thank you SuzieQ! You've done an outstanding job...I heart you! ~ M.

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    3. Carol that is you and your borderline self....take that resperidal daily now!

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  9. Sorry folks, but after the past 20 years of constant news stories about gyms ripping off their patrons, who in their right mind would pay more than one month in advance? Seriously. Especially if it is a small shop, unlike a Golds Gym, e.g.

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  10. Let market forces run their course. The owners will sing a different tune after the property sits vacant for many months and THEY lose even more $$$. Eventually they will have to settle for a more reasonably-priced agreement with a tenant, or they will sell.

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  11. Anonymous, you're full of it...you've lost my trust. I'm only going to listen to anonymous from now on.

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  12. I joined Athens fitness back in the 90's at that location, and have been a member ever since for Almost 20 YEARS!!. I was super excited when it became ProMaxx because they dumped tons of money into the building to upgrade it and make it beautiful like a fancy day spa. Anyway, after seeing what happened to the Bloom, it's obvious this landlord is a scum bag and can't have fair negotiations with the business owners who want to invest in the community and now it's starting to look like rt.1. If the landlord opens another gym in that space using the lovely renovated space ProMaxx worked so hard on, I will boycot using any services offered in the shopping center and spread the word to everyone I see around there. Shame on you greedy, sneaky slumlords. Word will get out, and you will pay the price for your actions. Hope your bank evicts you out your house after you make big renovations, then you can go live in the old ProMaxx location all alone in misery. Pittiful. Karma will get YOU!!!

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