Hi, our names are Stefan and Marie we’d like to share with you how we decided to sell our 2 fitness studios and thriving personal training business in Bangkok and travel the world on our motorbike.
Let’s start at the beginning…
We both love traveling on motorbikes, possibly because Bangkok traffic is so bad, we couldn’t imagine sitting in a car for hours to get from A to B.
Stefan started off with a little scooter, a Honda Click 125cc to be exact, and he raced around from client to client to offer his much-in-demand personal training.
When I came into the picture, we decided that the little scooter was not quite enough for both of us. We also wanted a bigger bike that could travel around Thailand. We settled on a Honda CBR500X and I surprised Stefan with setting up the down payment for the new bike on his birthday! 😀
We traveled up and down Thailand with that bike and we became even more addicted to motorbike travel. We pretty much never got in a car or cab. We went grocery shopping on our bike, we went to gala balls and costume parties on our bike, it became a lifestyle for us and we loved every minute of it. Yes, we rode on our bike dressed in all those “costumes” below 😛
We’re happy to say that our Honda CBR500X is still within the family as my dad bought it from us and it now looks even better than when we got it new.
During work hours we slowly but surely built our fitness family from 10-20 clients/month to about 200 clients/month but we still found time to travel.
We loved our business and we felt like each and every one of our clients was a friend or part of our family, but we still had that niggling travel bug that wouldn’t go away. When normal people get success in their business—they settle down. They invest in property, buy a car, or expand the business. I guess we were never really “normal”…
We just wanted to travel!!
Every penny and every vacation was spent exploring a new city in Thailand or a new country on a rented bike.
And it was during one of our spur of the moment road trips in Thailand that we joked about how cool it would be to ride around the world on our motorbike…
AND OUR DREAM WAS BORN…
That was in 2014. We put up posters on our wall with the bike we wanted to get (a BMW 1200GS–which we got second hand from a friend) and started planning our route. We initially had planned to travel by motorcycle from Bangkok to Amsterdam but due to us needing a new motorcycle (check out why here) we will purchase our new motorcycle and start our motorcycle journey in Stefan’s home town of Den Haag and explore Europe first.
When we started telling folks that we would stay in business for only a couple more years and then go around the world on our motorbike, I think most of them just thought we were dreaming. Or that we would “wake up and smell the coffee” and decide to settle down.
It was only at the end of 2016 when we sold our first fitness studio that folks realized that we were serious. I suppose it was only then that we also realized that we had jumped off the cliff and that there was no turning back…
Road Trip of a Lifetime…ready or not…here we come!! 😀 😀 😀
Update 2019: We have now ridden through 45 countries so far, and we are currently in the USA (12 states done, and we hope to do several more…)
Click here for the list of countries traveled through by the #hollapinos on #blackbeautybmw
We ended up living and making New York our home. We have an amazing opportunity to work as lead trainers and managers with F45 Great Neck Plaza. F45GNP we love you guys!!!
Update March 2020: Due to our work visa in the US not getting extended, and the Covid-19 crisis, we found ourselves flying back to Europe to escape the Corona madness in New York. To all our New York friends and family at heart…we miss you dearly!
Update June 2020: We have found a home in a little town in France and we’re excited about opening a small fitness holiday camp. Perhaps an obstacle course to challenge and exercise the whole family! Hopefully, Corona restrictions will ease up and travel is back to normal again! If you’re in the area visit us at Village du Soleil!! (also known as Chalets du Soleil)
Update Oct 2020: Marie is a French Resident! She has her French residence card to prove it! Whoooohooo! Stefan is lucky that he is Dutch and an EU citizen so NO sweat and complicated French paperwork needed for him! Thank you Frank and Danielle for being awesome friends and supporting us. You are our much-needed French translators! We are enjoying your beautiful property. Are you really sure you still want to give us free rent???
Update Dec 2020: Covid-19 has become part of our lives. Our business plan in France is sadly not a wise endeavor considering the lockdowns and travel restrictions. But there’s always a light at the end of the tunnel. We’ve returned to the Netherlands to accept a new challenge. We’ve both received a work opportunity to become EMS trainers at Nexxt Gym. This is something completely new for us…so fingers crossed!