How Dublin Guy made his vision of A Muay Thai and Fitness Retreat in Koh Samui a Reality

We all go on holidays and think we never want it to end……

Dream about owning a business and living in the Sun forever.

But that is what Tony Olin did, a top Muay Thai Fighter, he used to go to Thailand every year to train and is now living the dream

How did it all start , Tony?

I got into fitness because of the Muay Thai, I wasn’t making much money from that and I thought if I did a personal trainer course

I could do PT on the side and would be able to train full time.

So I did, but then I had 2 gyms in dublin and to be honest I was working all the hours under the sun, not seeing my family.

Something had to change…..

After my honeymoon in Koh Samoui, myself and my wife decided to take the leap.

I have always love the climate, the lifestyle over here

whats the worst that could happen?

I would return to my job as a carpenter.

So we did it…..


Personal Trainer course

So, Tony explain your business?

okay lads, we have two businesses from the same location here

We have our Muay Thai team which is under the Lionheart Muay Thai brand

so we get fighters and beginners from all over the world traveling to stay at the  camp.


 Then we run Fitkoh with which is the fitness side of things which is basically a weight-loss fitness retreat

so we get people who maybe are struggling to take the time out of their lives at home to

really tackle their fitness goals.

They can come out here some people stay a month, some people stay a week,

some people stay three months this is the only focus and they can really achieve great results.

They’re eating in our restaurant three times a day, they’re training multiple times a day.

its a complete dream as a PT trainer,as we have complete control of everything they do on site.


What challenges have you overcome?

Besides the usual factors of getting the money together, I had other factors to deal with like I am in a foreign country

Therefore there are language barriers, the island is controled by Thai’s so we had to overcome a few obstacles.

Many times I just wanted to throw the towel in but I just kepted focused and kepted going



What’s one of the most important things,do you think, to get right when starting up a business?

Find your niche, there are so many PT’s out there trying to talk to everyone and what happens

you talk to noone

pick who YOU want to train and market to them

go after them but remember the course is only the start, you should be constantly educating yourself.


What 3 bits of advice would give your younger self Tony?

  1. Do something that excites you, if its not keeping you up at night then maybe its not the right thing for you.                                                                                    

    2. Don’t be afraid to take a risk, worst case scenario you can just go back to what you were doing.


    3.Don’t be afraid to hire people to do things you are not good at so for example I hadn’t a clue about uploading pictures onto my website and it could take me weeks where I could just get some guy and pay him to it in a fraction of the time


And you also hire Elite students?

Yes I put an ad in the facebook group and Ian got back to me and is now with us doing a great job


So Ian, you just finished your course in March, how did it all start for you?

I have been a carpenter since I was 16, did I love it?

No, it was just a means to an end.

I got into strength training, did a couple of powerlifting comps but what I loved was when people started asking me for advice.

I got a kick out of it.

I actually did a Personal Trainer course in Australia which it came highly recommended,

cost me a lot of money but I wasn’t happy with it I didn’t really learn that much,

it was very general and I didn’t feel equipped to deliver a good service.

I had seen Elite before so when I got transfered back to Ireland with the company that I was with, I knew this was the time 

that I could do the course.

It was the best thing I ever did, I had the confidence to go out and coach anyone


So, ye are living the life Tony, drinking coconuts and lying on your hammocks all day

Living the life alright but they are long days 12-15 hour days.

Things are definitely getting a bit easier, when I started I was taking every class but now I can begin to take a step back

we have come a long way, I actually refurbished all the bungalows myself when we first opened, we rented them out through

Airbnb and my missus actually cleaned them

I was fighting in the stadium to get money on the table

So it is definitely not all coconuts and hammocks………

But I am very proud of where we have come.


Do you like Tony want to start living your dream, lets start TODAY……..







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