Welcome to my studio - I am Estelle, the founder of Anhao Wellness, a boutique studio with two floors, each with its unique focus - one on yoga and fitness training, and the other on pilates on reformers.
I was born and raised in Paris. Before I started Anhao Wellness, I used to work for an investment bank in Paris which later relocated me to Hong Kong… and I have stayed in Hong Kong ever since!
During childhood I used to spend a lot of time with my next-door neighbour, who was an Olympic Gymnast. Under her influence, I wanted to take up gymnastics and asked my parents to enroll me into gymnastics classes. Training for gymnastics was rigorous and I had to go straight to training from school everyday. Under such upbringing, it brought me to reach the French National Championships and gymnastics became an integral part of my life.
Upon graduation from business school, I worked at an Investment Bank and joined a gymnastics club to teach kids and share my knowledge. The turning point was when I relocated to Hong Kong for work. Back then Hong Kong did not offer many places for gymnastics but I really wanted to continue practising. Therefore I started teaching colleagues and friends around me on a leisure basis. Through words of mouth, I received a lot of referrals for teaching classes and my small side business grew very quickly within a year’s time. With such encouragement from people around me, I decided to quit my corporate job and created Anhao Wellness where I would teach on a full time basis.
Anhao means health and well-being in Chinese and both of the Chinese characters contain the female character in them. I wanted to create a boutique studio where I could invite women of all ages and levels to join me in conditioning their mind and body.
Currently, I have a team of ten teachers, half for pilates and half for yoga and fitness training. Together with the teachers, I have built a small supportive community around this neighborhood.
What were some challenges you faced, especially as a female entrepreneur, when launching ANHAO?
I have never felt challenged as a female founder of Anhao Wellness because 80% of my students are female. The Anhao Wellness community is very supportive and everybody see each other as equal.
I am a wife, a mommy, a coach and a businesswoman. I don’t compromise on any of my roles - my key to maintaining my balance is to identify and manage my time well and give 100% of my attention to one thing at a time.
Let me walk you through my typical work day - I would teach early morning classes until noon time. During the afternoon I would go back home to spend quality time with my children until about 6PM where I would go back to the studio to teach classes until 10PM.
As a wife and mother of two beautiful children, I always make time for my family no matter how busy I am. As a coach, I always keep a fit body shape to set a good example to my students.
I believe all women can achieve a balance as long as they have the right mindset and willingness to pay effort.
I enjoy doing pilates on machines called reformer. This workout makes you work every part of your body for 55 minutes. Not only do you get to take your mind off for 55 minutes without distractions, such as your phone, but you will also get fit and a toned body.
For women, it is important to have a good and lean body shape. It is not about weight training or crossfit. It is about mind conditioning and slow pace movements under calm music and attentive coaching.
A woman is beautiful when she is independent - a lady who can take care of herself, and laugh no matter what happens. I think being happy is what makes my world beautiful and magical.