Toronto Yoga Studio, Once Known for Its Beauty, Closes Permanently

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Toronto Yoga Studio, Once Known for Its Beauty, Closes Permanently

After nearly two decades, Toronto yoga hub Yoga Sanctuary has announced that it has closed its last remaining studio for good. The studio was once known as one of the city’s most beautiful yoga spaces.

Founder’s Statement

Founder Cynthia Funk announced to Yoga Sanctuary members that the studio closed permanently on Wednesday. “It’s so sad for me to close what was an incredibly vibrant and close-knit community,” Funk said.

Reasons for Closure

Funk cited several reasons for the closure, including the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting lockdowns. “The students really love to be in the studio, and so a lot of them didn’t really migrate over into the world of Zoom and online classes,” she said. “The cost of running the platforms and paying teachers and low attendance for Yoga Sanctuary is really what closed those doors.”

Future of the Space

The sunny studio space will remain a place for yoga, but not in its pre-pandemic format of drop-in classes. Instead, 95 Danforth will house Funk’s Yoga Sanctuary Academy, a separate business that offers yoga teacher training courses. Funk hopes that the academy model, which commits students to deeper dive courses over periods of up to 10 weeks, will be a more sustainable business model.

History of Yoga Sanctuary

When Funk first launched Yoga Sanctuary with her sister Kimberley Sopinka in 1999, their studio at 2 College St. was one of only a handful of other yoga studios in Toronto. By 2003, Yoga Sanctuary had grown to a second location in the Carrot Common, before moving to 95 Danforth in 2005.

The original College Street location closed in 2016, transferring next door to 1 Wood St. before that, too, closed permanently in April last year.

Community Impact

Yoga Sanctuary has had a significant impact on the Toronto yoga community. “I’ve been sent so many beautiful e-mails from people saying, ‘I’ve created lifelong friends at the yoga classes’ or ‘I met the love of my life at Yoga Sanctuary,'” Funk said. “I’ve had so much support and so many messages.”

Note: This article was originally published on April 01, 2021 by Tanya Mok on blogTO. The text has been rewritten and paraphrased for clarity and conciseness. Credit and rights belong to OMG I Yoga.


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