Apostolis Bacalis and Despina Manoloudas of Forte Lab in Astoria. (Photo by Anthoula Lelekidis)
ASTORIA – Despina Manoloudas and Apostolis Bacalis have opened the ultimate strength and recovery lab in Astoria, Queens. Forte Lab is located at 38-05 20th Avenue and offers a personalized fitness experience to help clients achieve their goals.
Born and raised in Astoria, Manoloudas is a lawyer and Bacalis, a fitness professional, and his late father were her clients. She helped Bacalis open his business in a small studio in Astoria when he came from Greece 10 years ago.
They developed a friendship and he also trained her and her friends. Manoloudas assisted Bacalis and his family with the purchase of their first home.
When asked how Forte Lab came about, Manoloudas told The National Herald that she was always a fitness enthusiast and was searching for a way to create something unique during the pandemic. Bacalis was also looking to expand from the 400-square foot space he was in.
Together they brainstormed and joined forces to bring something special to their community of Astoria. They named their business Forte which means strength, or what someone excels at, noting that in fitness one size does not fit all.
“You can excel at different things and achieve your health and wellness goals by doing so,” Manoloudas told TNH, adding that their new space is 4,000 square feet.
“Come by Forte and say hello, try a class or a sauna or cold plunge session soon,” Manoloudas said.
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