The Equinox Hotel Management, Inc. (“Equinox Hotels”) sued the Manhattan upscale gym giant, Equinox Holdings Inc. (“Equinox Gyms”), asking a federal judge in California to block the gym from expanding into hotels. Equinox Hotels do not want the upscale gym giant to take over the small company’s identity. Equinox Hotels fears that its brand recognition will quickly evaporate as consumers are bombarded with ads for the Equinox Gyms.

By way of background, Equinox Hotels is an independent San Francisco-based hospitality company that revitalizes hotel properties. It was founded in 1994. Equinox Hotels used its mark in connection with various hospitality services, including its hotel management and consulting services. The company portfolio of projects includes: (1) the Crowne Plaza Arlington; in Texas; (2) Jabal Omar Development Company Project in Saudi Arabia; (3) Walnut Creek Marriott & Athletic Club in Walnut Creek, California; (4) Hyatt Regency Sacramento in California; (5) The Davenport Hotel in Spokane, Washington; and (6) Laguna Cliffs Marriott Resort & Spa in Dana Point, California.

Equinox is a “fitness giant” that operates 94 EQUINOX branded luxury health clubs nationwide. Equinox Gyms abound especially in its hometown NYC. I recall my first trip to New York and seeing all of the signs with EQUINOX. I quickly learned that the New Yorkers escape from the hectic city into these upscale gyms.

The Equinox Gyms formulated plans to expand from the fitness industry into hospitality, including hotels. Two years ago, Equinox Gyms initially announced its hotel plans.

In its motion for an injunction, Equinox Hotels described its battle as a little David taking on a Goliath gym giant. The Equinox Gyms giant will soon be answering.

The hearing on the preliminary injunction will be held on January 16, 2018. Stay tuned.