Mr Olympia opens gym in Marbella
Dorian Yates six times world champion



British-born Dorian Yates has won the Mr Olympia title six consecutive times since 1992. He holds the fourth-highest number of Mr Olympia awards of all time ranking behind bodybuilding legends, Ronnie Coleman, Lee Haney and Arnold Schwarzenegger respectively so they don’t get much bigger than him, and he is widely considered one of the top athletes in modern bodybuilding history.
I’m reading up on the formidable Dorian Yates in anticipation of our interview and yet, as his silhouette appears in the doorframe and he approaches, I am humbled by his size and stature. Nicknamed ‘The Shadow’ on
account of his tendency to appear unexpectedly at major bodybuilding contests and win, despite having remained out of the public eye for long periods beforehand, Yates reportedly avoids interviews, television publicity and has even turned down a great deal of supplement endorsement contracts and media opportunities in order to retain his privacy, as he places great value on his personal life, so I am thrilled that he has agreed to take some time to speak with me.
The statuesque physique of a man is accompanied by his stunning wife Gal Ferreira Yates, a formidable figure in her own right, and an outstanding vision of smooth tanned skin, brawn and muscle. The couple has come to meet me in Centro Plaza, where their new gym is under construction (Just below Trustco Estates and Cafe Yanx). Wearing matching royal blue muscle hugging, fitted DY T-shirts; they are the embodiment of fitness.
We order green tea and as we peruse the menu, I can see that this couple is not only passionate about working out, but about healthy eating and healthy living.
“That’s my objective” Dorian tells me, “It’s not just going to be your run of the mill gym, it will be a place where you can change your body, your diet, your regime… and your way of life!”
Dorian and Gal have been back and forward between the UK and Marbella for many years and have always harboured a soft spot for this part of Southern Spain. Dorian has retired from the competition world and Gal recently decided that it was time for her too to call time on her successful bodybuilding career, and so they retired (for a short while!) to sunny Marbella, home of beautiful people and sunny smiles.
It wasn’t long though before Dorian realised that there was something missing in the market – a place for people who care about their fitness, their health and their bodies to come together a gym that offered more than the machines and the overpriced memberships and would deliver more than a twenty-minute workout twice a week. This would be a gym where you could train, build, grow, enjoy, laugh, reinvigorate, workout, play, enjoy, eat, socialise and live. The kind of gym that you go to BECAUSE YOU WANT TO and not because you have to.
Dorian originates from Birmingham, England and Gal is from Brazil, they met during their competing careers and were determined to settle somewhere that met both of their needs. They fell in love with Marbella, as everyone does, for its sunshine, beaches, cosmopolitan community and positive vibe.
“It makes you feel good!” exclaims Dorian “and it makes you want to feel good.” They love the weather and the outdoorsy kind of lifestyle that Marbella affords. “We’ve always trained at Plaza Gym,“ Dorian tells me, “So when it came up for sale, I knew that this was an opportunity I couldn’t miss.
There’s something about Centro Plaza that makes it feel like home. It’s a busy, bustling hive of activity. It’s the centre and meeting point for most Marbella or Puerto Banús-based expats, and whether it’s yummy mummies out to lunch or breakfasting businessmen, you know you’ll always run into someone that you know and there’s a
great energy and liveliness about this commercial centre.
It will be a place where you can change your body, your diet, your regime and your way of life.
DY Gym is going to be at the heart of that bustle and commotion. The original gym has been expanded, stripped out, and is being rebuilt into a super gym. A weightlifting, running, spinning, yogaing, body rocking haven for like-minded, health conscious Marbellís to work out, reenergize, relax and unwind.
Not only will there be the finest equipment available, (Dorian has sourced and handpicked all the freeweights and machines from all over the globe to ensure that he has the best equipment on the market) but there will also be a full cross-fit gym, a studio for classes, a spinning area, therapy and massage rooms, and a restaurant and café serving fresh, healthy and nutritious food, juices, smoothies and shakes.
DY Gym will be quite unlike anywhere else in Marbella. It will offer a complete lifestyle rather than a mere gym. “It’s going to be a place where you go to feel good. There will always be qualified trainers on hand, a wide range of classes ranging from upbeat aerobics to relaxing yoga, the most modern equipment to train with and a great and positive, fun and friendly atmosphere. On Friday nights Beachgrooves Radio will be coming direct from the gym from 7 to 11pm and it’s set to be a funky, fresh and fashionable approach to gyming.”
We take a tour of the vast gymnasium, where giant murals of Dorian have been painted from floor to ceiling and I cannot help but be in awe of the size and striking likeness. The builders are working around the clock to get the gym open over the coming month and Dorian and Gal are excitedly busy with getting this super gym off to a flying start. From kitting out the gym’s new café to employing the most capable and proficient trainers on the coast, they aren’t cutting any corners.
As we meander around the extensive space and Dorian points out the various areas, explaining the design and layout of the new structure, I can envisage the new gymnasium, and despite my aversion to exercise it seems like a place that could whip me into shape and where I might actually enjoy working out.
“Don’t worry about that,” Dorian reassures me, “You’re going to love it. We’ll get you into shape in no time and you’ll be here all the time.”

I don’t know whether it’s his size and imposing demeanor, or his passion and obvious excitement about this project, but I can well believe him and am actually looking forward to getting into the gym and changing my lifestyle. Wonders will never cease!
DY GYM, (Mr Olympia opens gym in Marbella) Centro Plaza, Nueva Andalucía

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